Every year the Rendez-Vous Pros des Francos presents music showcases on the Silo Brasseur de Montréal stage at the Esplanade Tranquille for the benefit of accredited music industry delegates from Québec and abroad. For the 2022 edition, SOCAN extended the invitation to two promising SOCAN members: Naomi (published by Éditions Bravo Musique Inc) and Fredz, who gave solid 30-minute performances before a large and enthusiastic audience. For its part, l’Association des professionnels de l’édition musicale (APEM) presented pop sensation Marilyne Léonard (published by Editorial Avenue) and rapper 20some (published by Joy Ride Records), of the popular group Dead Obies. We captured a few images for your enjoyment.

SOCAN has announced its 2021 fiscal results, including $416 million in collections for licensed music and $353 million paid to the more than 180,000 songwriters, composers, publishers and visual artists the organization represents.

Collections increased by six percent, despite several revenue streams continuing to be impacted by the pandemic.

Cost efficiencies remained crucial in 2021, and SOCAN kept gross expenses below 2019 levels and saw a less than one percent increase year-over-year.

Highlights of SOCAN’s 2021 results:

  • Total collections: $416-million (6% increase over 2020).
  • Domestic collections: $310-million (+6% year-over-year).
  • Total collections from internet use of music: $135-million (+30%).
  • Strong Reproduction Rights results, with Internet audio-visual more than doubling, synchronization up 37 percent, and international reproduction rights revenue +32 percent over 2020.
  • Total international collections: six percent increase to $106-million.

Internet collection increases have been driven by a rapidly expanding world market for music delivered via the internet. Stabilization in internet music revenue is starting to occur due to market saturation, while internet audio-visual is still seeing significant increases with the introduction of new services in Canada, most recently Disney+ , Amazon TV, and Apple TV+.

“Internet royalties now make up nearly 40 percent of the quarterly SOCAN domestic distributions, which is why the Online Streaming Act currently being tabled by the federal government is so important,” said Jennifer Brown, SOCAN CEO. “It’s imperative that streaming services contribute to the Canadian cultural ecosystem by promoting Canadian songs and ensuring fair compensation for our members’ work.”

Even with overall increases, the average SOCAN writer-member received only $67 in royalties from online streaming in 2021.

In 2021, SOCAN sharpened its focus on service to members by making key additions to the leadership team, expanding the Reproduction Rights department to enhance dedicated service to clients and members, and divesting from wholly-owned companies. SOCAN’s position as a member-centric organization, committed to service excellence, working in partnership with staff and stakeholders to maximize rights and royalties, remains top priority, now and in the future.

As SOCAN looks toward recovery in the live music sector, which continues to face pandemic-related challenges with concert revenue down 75 percent versus pre-pandemic levels, the non-profit company has partnered with the Canadian Live Music Association to deliver Aid#ForTheLoveOfLive, benefiting 30 small live venues across Canada.

“Supporting our members also means supporting the health and sustainability of the venues that provide the stage for that important connection with fans,” Brown added. “Canadian music creators thrive when our live music venues thrive, and Aid#ForTheLoveOfLive aims to provide a small helping hand at a difficult time.”

Eligible live music venues can apply at www.aidfortheloveoflive.com until July 13, 2022.

For an overview of SOCAN’s 2021 activities and financials, please visit www.socanannualreport.ca.

The votes are in! Music fans declare “Welcome to the Garden,” written and performed by Emily Steinwall of Toronto, the winner of the 17th annual SOCAN Songwriting Prize. 

In addition to the prestige of winning, Emily Steinwall receives a $5,000 cash prize, a Yamaha Workstation, and a $500 gift card from Long & McQuade to support her creative process and songwriting journey. 

This is Steinwall’s first foray into songwriting, and fans and critics alike are thrilled she made the leap. First recognized and celebrated as an emerging composer, saxophone player, flautist, and bandleader, Steinwall is no stranger to the spotlight. Before releasing her debut concept album “Welcome to the Garden,” Steinwall graced the stage as a back-up singer for Alessia Cara. 

Just as a flower and the Earth are one, synergistically connected and inseparable, an artist cannot exist without the community of people from which they grow. We cannot be separated from our history or environment. This is the message I hope comes across with ‘Welcome to the Garden’,” said Steinwall. “Thank you to everyone that took the time to vote, without whom I would not have received this award. I think this is a clear indication that music grows from the ground up — its roots in community, its meaning and value in how it resonates with others. Thank you so much to SOCAN and all of the sponsors for creating this award to encourage and celebrate young songwriters. 

SOCAN is pleased to also present cash prizes of $500 to the writers of each of the remaining nine nominated songs, along with a $50 gift card from Long & McQuade. 

“Congratulations to Emily Steinwall,” said Jennifer Brown, CEO of SOCAN. “Her talent as a songwriter is clear in ‘Welcome to the Garden.’ It has an emotional depth rarely seen this early in a career. Canada is fortunate to have such strong songwriting talent, and the 10 songs nominated for the 2022 Songwriting Prize are representative of a very bright future for Canadian music.”  

Matt Bobkin, eminent music and arts journalist, and a SOCAN Songwriting Prize panelist, said this about the song: “There’s so much to love about ‘Welcome to the Garden,’ and not just because it’s 10 minutes long: the daring blend of jazz, psych, and progressive rock; the lush arrangements, mirroring lyrics that praise the power of womanhood, community, and nature; and the many stellar performances, from the vocals to the climactic sax solo. It pushes forward plenty of ideas, narratives, and sounds that are too often ignored or pigeonholed in popular music, and it’s amazing to think that this is only the beginning for a visionary like Emily.”   

The SOCAN Songwriting Prize is the only major songwriting award in Canada where fans vote to determine the winner. Ten outstanding songs created by Canadian songwriters over the past year are nominated by a panel of 15 esteemed music industry experts. The public is then invited to vote once a day for their favourite song for one week to determine the winner.  

SOCAN plays no role in determining the nominees or winners, apart from ensuring that they meet eligibility criteria.  

The winner of the Prix de la chanson SOCAN, the competition conducted separately for songs in French, was “Secret,” written by Hubert Chiasson, Félix Petit, and Julien Chiasson; performed by Hubert Lenoir; and published by Leclerc Lenoir Inc.

Also featured in the English category were the following extraordinary songs: 

  • “24hrs” – written by Johann Deterville, Adam Pondang, Savannah Ré Simpson; performed by Savannah Ré; Savannah Ré and Johann Deterville published by Sony Music Publishing, Adam Pondang published by Warner Chappell Music Canada Ltd.  
  • “By Myself” – written by Kahdijah Payne; performed by DijahSB and Harrison.  
  • “Can’t Let Go” – written by Jeanne Garpy, Gabrielle Godon; performed by Laroie; published by Arts & Crafts Music Publishing.  
  • “Container” – written by Liam Cole, Thomas Gill, Dorothea Paas, Paul Saulnier; performed by Dorothea Paas. 
  • “Find A Home” – written by Andrew Lennox, Eric Lourenco, Kirsten Kurvink Palm, Adam Sturgeon, Joe Thorner; performed by Status/Non-Status. 
  • “Paper Thin” – written by Brendan Grieve, Nemah Hasan, Stevie Solomon; performed by Nemahsis. 
  • Stacy” – written by Kevin Ekofo, Jordon Manswell, Jonathan Martin, Evan Miles, Jon Vinyl, Corey Wong; Kevin Ekofo published by ST Music Circle, Jon Vinyl published by Warner Chappell Music Canada Ltd; performed by Jon Vinyl. 
  • “Trust Issues” – written by Erik Fintelman, Robyn Ottolini, Mark Schroor; performed by Robyn Ottolini; published by  Warner Chappell Music Canada Ltd.
  • “want you more” – written by Amaka Queenette, Joshua Stanberry; performed by Amaka Queenette.  

The 2021 winner of the SOCAN Songwriting Prize was “Western Skies” written and performed by Billy Raffoul. Previous winners are available to view at SOCAN Songwriting Prize.