Aysanabee earned two honours at the 2024 JUNOs Opening Night Awards on March 23 in Halifax, for Songwriter of the Year sponsored by SOCAN, and Alternative Album of the Year, for Here and Now.

SOCAN CEO Jennifer Brown and SOCAN member Lauren Spencer-Smith co-presented the songwriter award to Ayasanabee. “Songwriters have a unique ability to have a lasting impact on our lives and our culture” said Brown. “And having the opportunity to award that artistry holds a special place for everyone at SOCAN.”

TOBi, JUNO Awards, 2024, winner


Backstage in the media room for brief Q&A sessions, Aysanabee talked about being honoured as a songwriter. “It’s a great feeling to be recognized by your peers,” he said. “And [them] seeing you. It’s humbling. I think I’ve always written music to process the world around me. For me, I’ve always written from lived experience, from something very close to the heart. That’s just how I write. There’s no right or wrong way to write a song, there’s just a true way to write for yourself. I think the biggest thing is people stepping in their own way, stepping in their own feet.”

TOBi also won two JUNO Awards – for Rap Album (for Panic) and Rap Single of the Year (for “Someone I Knew”) – as did Tate McRae (who didn’t attend the Awards), for Artist and Single of the Year (for “greedy”).

Backstage, TOBi talked about acquiring his sense of social justice from his mother. “My mom was working as a lawyer in Nigeria before we moved to Canada,” he said. “When we moved to Canada, she started working with women that had lived through abuse. And I was just so connected to it, even as a young kid, just hearing all the stories. She was so passionate about it; she’s still so passionate about it. So, that’s definitely something that I’ve taken in, subconsciously, over the years.”

Among the other SOCAN member winners at the event, co-hosted by Aba Amuquandoh and Damhnait Doyle at the Halifax Convention Centre, were Les Cowboys Fringants  for Francophone Album of the Year; Aquila  for Traditional R&B Soul Recording; The Beaches, for Rock Album; William Prince, for Contemporary Roots Album; Elisapie, for Contemporary Indigenous Artist or Group; Charlotte Cardin for Pop Album; Feist for Alternative Album.

For a full list of winners and nominees, visit the winners page on the JUNOs website. Congratulations to all our nominated and award-winning SOCAN members at the 2024 JUNOs Opening Night Awards!