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CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. - Charlottetown indie rock band Paper Lions leads the P.E.I. musical pack with four 2019 East Coast Music Award nominations.
The band is nominated for album of the year, group recording of the year, pop recording of the year and fans’ choice entertainer of the year.
Nominations were announced Monday for the ECMAs, which are returning to Charlottetown May 1-5 for the first time in five years.
Prince Edward Island is up for 32 awards, similar to the nominee tallies in New Brunswick (31) and Newfoundland and Labrador (33).
Nova Scotia has more than those three combined at 106 with Cape Breton rounding out the group at 17 nominations.
Classified, the stage name for Lucas Boyd, a rapper and record producer from Enfield, N.S., tops the field with seven nominations. Ben Caplan, a folk musician from Halifax, follows with six.
Jeremy Dutcher, a classically-trained Canadian Indigenous tenor, composer, musicologist, performer and activist and a Wolastoqiyik (Maliseet) member of the Tobique First Nation in North-West, N.B., has earned five nominations.
At a glance
2019 ECMA nominees
- To view the full list announced Monday in Charlottetown, visit www.ecma.com.
- The East Coast Music Association is a non-profit association that hosts an annual awards ceremony based in Atlantic Canada.
- Since its beginning in 1989 when it was launched as the Maritime Music Awards by Halifax music industry promoter Rob Cohn, it has grown from the original five categories (album of the year, female artist of the year, male artist of the year, song of the year and video of the year) to over 40 categories for artist, industry and honorary awards.
Rustico native Lennie Gallant is competing with Paper Lions for album of the year and fan’s choice entertainer of the year (a category with 12 nominees). Gallant is also up against P.E.I. singer-songwriter Meaghan Blanchard, among others, for contemporary roots recording of the year.
Charlottetown’s Emilee Sorrey, lead singer of the pop rock band Sorrey, performed Monday morning at the award nominee announcement held at The Guild. She told the crowd the ECMAs have been “very important’’ to her and her band.
Dylan Menzie, a native of Belle River, P.E.I., wrapped up the event with an energetic performance. Although Menzie is nominated for album of the year, he will be away in Mexico during the ECMA week in Charlottetown.
The federal government and the P.E.I. government are each contributing $250,000 to the event while the capital city, in partnership with the Charlottetown Special Events Reserve Fund, is providing the organization with $150,000.
P.E.I. Economic Development and Tourism Minister Chris Palmer called the event a welcome boost to tourism at what is typically a slow time of year for the industry here in early May.
The East Coast Music Awards: Festival and Conference has grown from a one-day event to a five-day international gathering with a budget exceeding $1.6 million.
Andy MacLean, the CEO of the ECMA, said more than 75 music industry executives will be participating in the export/buyers portion of the event.