The televised ADISQ Gala was presented on Sunday, Nov. 5, 2023, and the host, Louis-José Houde, announced that he was retiring, after his 18th consecutive year at the helm of the event. Daniel Bélanger won two more trophies during the evening, making him the overall “winningest” artist this year, with a total of five Félix Awards. Winning Male Artist of the Year and the prestigious Songwriter of the Year trophy at this 45th edition placed him at the top of the podium. Alongside him were Alexandra Stréliski – who won both Female Artist and Artist of the Year, and Artist of the Year – International Outreach – and Kanen, who won Indigenous Artist of the Year and Revelation of the Year, becoming the first-ever Indigenous artist to win in the latter category.

SOCAN, Interview, Salebarbes, ADISQ Gala, 2023

Select the image to play the SOCAN YouTube interview video with Salebarbes

In the Song of the Year category, decided by a mixed vote from industry representatives and the general public, fans of the supergroup Salebarbes certainly played a role in selecting “Gin à l’eau salée” as the winning song. Visibly delighted by this accolade, the artists spoke with Paroles & Musique for a few minutes in the press room to share their pride.

The Félix for Show of the Year went to the tireless and perennially relevant Michel Rivard, for his show “Le tour du bloc,” celebrating the 50th Anniversary of his career. While receiving his honour, Rivard invited 11 musicians to accompany him onstage.

Ginette Reno, who was part of a surprising opening number that found her singing with the rapper FouKi, among others, unsurprisingly walked away with the Félix for Album of the Year – Popular Success. Undoubtedly one of Québec’s favourite bands, Les Cowboys Fringants, won for Group of the Year. Louis-José Houde dedicated the gala to the band’s singer, Karl Tremblay, currently battling cancer. The rest of the band members, in attendance on Sunday evening, said they were touched by all the affection they’ve received throughout the past year from their fellow members of the Québec music industry, but above all, by their army of fans. “We’ve always said there are 20 Cowboys when you include our musicians and crew. This year, we found out there are eight million Cowboys,” said bassist Jérôme Dupras.

Gala ADISQ 2023, Loud, Raccoon, MuzionThe gala also featured several outstanding performances from SOCAN members Patrick Norman and Martine St-Clair, as well as Revelation of the Year nominees Bibi Club, Calamine, Francis Degrandpré, Kanen, and Jeanick Fournier, as well as Alexandra Stréliski and Daniel Bélanger, Clay and Friends, and Pierre Kwenders, Maten and Black Bear, and Salebarbes. The evening concluded with a nod to the 50th anniversary of hip-hop, featuring Loud and Raccoon, who were joined by very special guests Muzion, to deliver their 1999 unifying anthem “La vi ti nèg.”

Eric Parazelli and Marie-Michèle Bouchard of SOCAN’s Communications & Marketing team were on the red carpet and in the press room to gather impressions from the nominees and winners, while CEO Jennifer Brown, Chairman of the Board Marc Ouellet, Chief Membership Officer Jean-Christian Céré, Chief Legal Officer Andrea Kokonis, Executive Director of Québec Affairs Alexandre Alonso and Creative & Partnership Executive Sara Dendane also attended the gala, demonstrating their unwavering support for members of the SOCAN family.

For a complete list of winners, visit the ADISQ website. Stay tuned for our backstage interviews from the Premier Gala and the ADISQ Gala.


Four hit songs from the 1980s and 1990s were inducted to the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame (CSHF) on Nov. 1, 2023, in a celebratory show at the CBC’s Glenn Gould Studio in downtown Toronto, as part of the Legends Series, supported by the RBC Foundation through RBC Emerging Artists.

The four honoured songs are generational, culture-defining, internationally influential hits co-written by Canadians, and recorded by Canadians:

  • “Informer,” the biggest selling reggae-rap recording in the ‘90s, recorded by Snow (Darrin O’Brien), and co-written by Snow with American rapper/producer MC Shan (Shawn Moltke), Terri Moltke, and Edmond Leary;
  • “Drinking in L.A.,” a global club anthem recorded by alt-rock/hip-hop/folk collective Bran Van 3000, co-written by James Di Salvio, Haig Vartzbedian and U.S.-based Duane Larson;
  • “My Definition of a Boombastic Jazz Style,” a Canadian hip-hop trailblazer, recorded by duo Dream Warriors, and written by one of its two members, King Lou (Louie Robinson), along with Richard Rodwell; and
  • “Echo Beach,” the enduring new-wave classic written by Mark Gane, co-founder of the Toronto band Martha and the Muffins.

At the show, onstage interviews with Snow; King Lou and Richard Rodwell; James DiSalvio and Haig Vartzbedian; and Mark Gane – along with new honourees Marc Jordan and John Capek, who were inducted for their entire catalogues, including co-writing Rod Stewart’s “Rhythm of My Heart” – were conducted by host Sonia Benezra, who delved into the stories behind the songs.

The evening included video tributes to the songs, including one from Rod Stewart for “Rhythm of My Heart,” and standout performances of “Drinking in L.A.” by Luna Elle and Cameron Phillip; “My Definition” by TOBi and Dream Warriors themselves; “Echo Beach” by Sam Casey; and “Informer” by Snow himself.

“The four songs that were inducted are vastly different from each other, but they all pushed the boundaries of convention, celebrated individuality, and influenced popular culture,” said Stan Meissner, CSHF Board Chairman.


The SOCAN Foundation and the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame were pleased and proud to hold their second annual Indigenous Song Camp, presented by Amazon Music, at the downtown Tkaronto/Toronto creative hub Kilometre House, Oct. 23-26, 2023. It’s Canada’s only music program solely dedicated to supporting the songwriting and storytelling of emerging Indigenous artists.

Over the course of a four-day creative journey, 17 Indigenous and non-Indigenous songwriters, artists, and producers came together to explore new writing styles, develop new working relationships, and create a positive community experience. The camp allowed participants to expand their networks, while creating new songs in an inspiring setting, and presenting their work at an industry listening session.

The selected participants came from across the country, and represented a wide variety of musical styles. This cohort included:

The camp participants were mentored by hit songwriters, producers, and music publishers Jenna Andrews and Stephen Kirk; Kim Wheatley, an Anishinaabe Ojibway grandmother from the Shawanaga First Nations Reserve; Sākihiwē Festival Director Alan Greyeyes; and Melissa Somosky, Senior Content Acquisition Manager, Amazon Music. The camp was facilitated by Melissa Cameron-Passley, Noah Mirotta, Jess Persadie, and Cole Wilson, all of the Kilometre Music Group; Britt Ralph, of the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame; and Julien Boumard-Coallier, of The SOCAN Foundation.

“This felt like one of the best experiences I’ve had – both musically and on a personal level,” said camp participant Justine Tyrell. “You created a fun, productive and safe space for all of us to really show up to do great work, form friendships, community, and find colleagues that will last long beyond this week. As a songwriter and an artist, I feel like you set us up to be successful, and helped put real-life, tangible opportunities in front of us. These are the experiences and building blocks that genuinely make a difference, and help us sharpen our tools in the work we do, and carry us further in our careers.”

“I’m super-happy that the sākihiwē festival is able to support this incredible opportunity for Indigenous songwriters in Canada,” said camp mentor Alan Greyeyes. “We’re proud to work with the SOCAN Foundation and the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame to support the amazing work that songwriters, artists, and producers created at this years’ Indigenous Song Camp,” said John Murphy, Head of camp presenter Amazon Music and Podcasts in Canada.