Career Track Consults
Career Tracks offers confidential, specific career consultations to artists and music professionals. SaskMusic members* can meet with our skilled staff and mentors through this program discuss career plans, marketing strategies, touring, songwriting and copyright, funding and grant applications, exporting, industry trends, or any other relevant music topics.
Our mentors are versed in a range of expertise and perspectives. At the present time (2020), consultations are conducted via phone or video chat.
Tips for a successful consult
- Prioritize your questions, challenges and/or goals
- Look through our mentors' descriptions to see who would be the best fit to discuss your priorities with.
- Select up to 3 mentors at a time. You can book additional consults in the future, but we suggest completing a consult or two first and then evaluating what your next set of questions will be.
- Come to your consult prepared with specific questions or things you'd like to discuss to make the most of your time with the mentor.
- Consults must be booked by SaskMusic. We ask you not to contact mentors directly to request appointments, even for follow-up consults. Mentor time is tracked and compensated by SaskMusic.
- Members who cancel or fail to attend a consult with less than 24 hours notice more than once are unlikely to be accommodated for future consult requests. Our mentors' time is valuable.
Questions? email firstname.lastname@example.org or call toll-free 1-800-347-0676.
*To become a SaskMusic member, visit our Join page.
Melanie Berglund, aka Belle Plaine, is a singer/songwriter based in Regina. Her musical background includes 12 years of classical vocal training, jazz/contemporary music study at Grant MacEwan College, and a history of live performance reaching back to her childhood. Berglund’s music embodies traditional country and folk music while never fitting squarely into one category. Her album Malice, Mercy, Grief + Wrath earned a 2020 JUNO nomination and drew accolades from Rolling Stone. It was awarded Album of the Year at the 2018 Sask Music Awards and Belle was nominated for Roots Solo Artist at the 2019 WCMAs. She has collaborated on multiple occasions with the Regina Symphony Orchestra, most recently in February 2020 when she performed in the RSO’s Pops Series with the symphony at the Conexus Arts Centre.
Berglund has been a full-time and self-managed musician since 2010. She’s toured in Canada, the U.S. and Europe. She’s a successful recipient of funding from FACTOR, the SOCAN Foundation, the Saskatchewan Arts Board, and Creative Saskatchewan. She’s served as a juror for the JUNOs, WCMAs, FACTOR and Saskatchewan Arts Board.
Melanie joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including: grant applications, recording, project management, touring, self-booking and self-management.
Susan is an independent publicist from Saskatoon who specializes in working with artists. She was awarded the 2017 Western Canadian Music Award for ‘Impact in Music Marketing’, and was nominated in 2016 and 2018 for the same. She was also nominated for the Saskatchewan Music Award for ‘Industry Achievement’ in both 2018 and 2019.
With a business background in marketing and sales and a Bachelor of Commerce degree with a major in Finance from the University of Saskatchewan, she strategizes and executes campaigns (print, radio, visual, digital media) with award winning clients such as: the SaskTel Saskatchewan Jazz Festival, Cirque du Soleil, Sean Burns, Rosie & the Riveters, 100 mile house, Alexis Normand, Andino Suns, Belle Plaine, Blake Berglund, Kevin Roy, the Regina Folk Festival, and more; with television clients The Neighbors Dog, Quizzine, and Space Stretch; with the Saskatoon Fashion and Design Festival; with writer Alice Kuipers; with visual artist and published colouring book author Denyse Klette; and with a small selection of corporate clients. She also provides hourly consultation services and is developing publicity training courses. Susan recently served a six year term as Treasurer of the Board for SaskMusic. She continues to serve as a juror for CARAS (The JUNOs), FACTOR, WCMA, CCMA and Creative Saskatchewan. Previous roles in music include radio tracker for OnRamp Records, producer of CMT music videos for Fahrenheit Films (nominated for CCMA “Country Music Program or Special of the Year”), freelance writer for Saskatoon Express and contributor to a music history book and several blogs.
Susan joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultations and advice related to all things publicity.
Starting out as a DJ, Factor Chandelier has evolved into one of Western Canada’s busiest producers. He is continuously working and touring with high caliber Canadian and American artists including: Awol One, Open Mike Eagle, Moka Only, Myka 9, Ceschi, Sole, Aesop Rock, Buck65, Gregory Pepper, Astronautalis, Sunspot Jonz, Evil Ebenezer, Merkules, Xzibit, Kool Keith, Sage Francis, Def3, Kay the Aquanaut and the Side Road Crew. He is known for continuously dropping top-notch product out of Saskatoon since the early 2000s. He is the founder, owner and operator of Side Road Records (2001), releasing over 40 professional albums between Side Road & Fake Four Inc.
Factor's music has garnered international distribution and he has received positive critical acclaim by way of magazine and website reviews, as well as reaching #1 charting radio play on college/community radio all over Canada, the U.S., and Japan. Factor has been able to get placement in movies (theme song for “Wolfcop”) and advertisements with companies such as Addidas, Gopro, MTV and more. He was nominated for a 2015 Western Canadian Music Award for his work on “Wildlif3” with fellow Sask. artist Def3, in the Hip Hop Album of the Year category.
Factor's production combines smooth melodic moods and live instruments over immaculate drums - put together seemingly effortlessly - to create a distinct sound of his own, and it's for this reason he's consistently banging out one-of-a-kind beats as one of underground music’s favorite new school producers. Factor is always trying to create original, thought-provoking music that pushes the envelope of traditional hip-hop and has drawn significant attention to this Canadian artist. Hailing from the prairies, this Saskatoon born and raised musician continues to make waves with his innovative sound.
Factor joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including:
recording, touring, self management, indie labels, and music production.
Geoff Smith started his music career in 2011, when he released his first recording as Gunner & Smith. Since then, Geoff has released a number of recordings and toured Canada extensively, and more recently, the USA. He has also performed at a number of prestigious industry showcases including Folk Alliance International and NXNE. Geoff has significant experience in songwriting, band management, grant writing, tour booking, and promotion. In addition to working as a touring artist, Geoff has booked tours in Canada and the USA for a number of acts, books and promotes shows at a local venue, and is the founder of the Saskatoon Songwriter Showcase.
Geoff joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including:
self-booking, international showcasing, and songwriting.
Jay Semko is known nationally as singer and bassist with multiple JUNO Award nominees and Western Canadian Music Hall of Fame members the Northern Pikes, internationally as an award winning music composer for numerous film and TV productions, including Canada's most successful internationally syndicated series, "Due South", and as one of Canada’s premiere singer/songwriters, with 10 solo albums released. He has co-written and recorded with many of the best songwriters and musicians in music, has instructed songwriting at the University of Saskatchewan and been a panelist, participant, and host at many national events affiliated with SOCAN, the Canadian Country Music Association (CCMA), and many others.
He is a 2-time winner of the SCMA Award for Roots Album of the Year (2012 "Force of Horses" & 2015 "Flora Vista") and a 2-time Gemini Award nominee and Canadian Screen Award nominee for his work as a music composer for television ("Due South" and "Dust Up"). He has performed across North America, Japan, at SXSW, the International Folk Alliance Conference, NXNE and many other industry events. He is also a full ACTRA member and his voice can be heard on many advertising campaigns across Canada and the USA. He continues to tour nationally as a solo acoustic artist and with the Northern Pikes, and his songs, stories, and legendary live concerts continue to garner him recognition as one of Canada's most prolific musical talents. For more info about Jay go to www.jaysemko.com.
Jay joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including: songwriting, co-writing, composing for film/television, and live performance.
John Antoniuk is a singer/songwriter whose music draws a diverse range of comparisons - from Teenage Fanclub and Weezer, to Ryan Adams and Neil Young. In 2003 John released the “Side A” EP, which quickly garnered him attention as a songwriter and saw him sharing the stage with artists like Ron Sexsmith and Hayden. "13"(2008) was the first full-length release under the Smokekiller moniker, and featured "Out There" which was selected as a National Finalist in the 2009 RadioStar Songwriting Competition. In 2012 John released "Always With You", a eponymous tribute to his late mom, and was named “Best Solo Artist” in a Planet S reader’s poll. The International Songwriting Competition has recognized John as a semifinalist 3 years in a row; in 2013 for “Chicago” from the album “Always With You”, in 2014 for “End Of The World”, and in 2015 for "The Way Home" both from the album “Jen & John.”
John and his wife, Jen Lane, are self managed and recently started their own record label, Poor Kitty Records. Jen and John tour steadily and continue to write and record both separately and together. John has also provided mentorship and consultation to established and emerging artists from Saskatchewan including members of the Deep Dark Woods, Close Talker, The Pistolwhips, We Were Lovers, Gunner & Smith, Zachary Lucky, Christian Kongawi, Acronyms, and Young Benjamins.
John joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including: touring, administration, grant writing, artist self-management, songwriting, and developing a business strategy within an artistic career.
Tyson McShane (band leader/chief songwriter for Slow Down Molasses) grew up in Prince Albert, a town where there was precisely one all-ages punk rock concert a year (and it usually ended in a mini-riot). After moving to the ‘big city’ of Saskatoon for University, McShane became immersed in the city’s thriving music and art scene, playing in bands, promoting shows, and hyping the local scene every step of the way. With his band Slow Down Molasses, Tyson has released three albums and two EPs (with another album on the way in September 2016), toured Canada, the United Kingdom, Belgium, France, Czech Republic, Germany and the Netherlands, playing shows at some of the most exciting new music festivals happening (End of the Road, Sled Island, Reeperbahn, Incubate, SXSW, CMJ, NXNE, Nouvelle Prague, The Great Escape, Liverpool SoundCity etc.)
Outside of his time with Slow Down Molasses, Tyson has played and records with sludge-pop fuzz merchants Jeans Boots and weirdo noise-niks The Eyebats, co-curated Saskatoon’s newest music festival MoSoFest, and secretly/not-so-secretly holds down day job as a City Planner/Urban Designer.
Tyson joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including: recording, touring, songwriting, and international showcasing.
Skip’s start in the music business began in the late '80s promoting punk rock shows in Regina. After attending music college, Skip ended up working record retail in Regina and Calgary for a few years before moving back to Saskatchewan to be the Universal Music Promotion Representative for Saskatchewan from 1995 to 2010. There he was responsible for promoting, marketing, securing publicity, and radio play for the entire Universal Music roster in our province, including both Canadian and International artists. Skip is now the Performing Arts Coordinator at OSAC. In this role he helps the organization and its members book over 170 performances in the province each year. Skip attends many showcase events each year including Contact East, Pacific Contact and the ECMAs and routinely sees over 100 showcases a year. This experience has given him extensive knowledge about Canada’s provincial touring networks and, specifically, Canadian arts organizations’ Showcase events.
Skip joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including: network showcasing, artist marketing, touring, and self-management.
Lenore Maier is a multi-instrumentalist; she plays drums and sings in Saskatoon surf pop band The Garrys where she has performed alongside notable acts such as The Sadies, Elliott Brood and La Luz. She also produces ambient electronic works as Ursa and has worked in the realms of film score composition and live theatre sound design. She is the co-founder of Grey Records, a small cassette label based in Saskatoon. She has toured across Canada and the UK and has booked several tours for her own bands and others on Grey Records. She is an organizer with Girls Rock Saskatoon and is the founder of FEMFEST! (2017-2019) and Festival Director of The Manitou Boogaloo (2018-present). She has juried several music festivals and has been a FACTOR juror since 2014. Lenore holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies and is currently pursuing a Master of Public Health at the University of Saskatchewan.
Lenore joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including: grant applications, national and international showcasing, recording, touring, running a small record label, self-booking and self-management.
Kate began her career in 2006 while finishing her Marketing degree at the U of S. Soon after convocation, she focused on artist management along with marketing and publicity for musicians. A few years into her career in the music business, Kate was offered a coveted fashion internship at ELLE magazine. While at the magazine, she worked on photo shoots, pitched story and page ideas, wrote articles and interviewed celebrities, and learned the ropes of working at a major fashion magazine. After working at ELLE, Kate developed her niche as a wardrobe stylist and brand consultant, allowing her to combine her love of fashion, music and marketing. She has since been nominated for a Western Canadian Music Award and her placement and client list includes Warner Music Canada, Live Nation, Canadian Country Music Association, ELLE magazine, Globe & Mail, National Post, Food Network, CityTV, CTV and more. No matter the project, Kate’s goal is to help others create and convey their unique, authentic brand and to help them consistently communicate that brand.
Kate joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including: wardrobe styling for tours/media/photo shoots/video shoots, and establishing wardrobe guidelines for solo artists and bands.
Jeffrey Romanyk is a drummer, performer, instructor and session musician. He played drums and percussion on Rah Rah’s 2012 JUNO and Polaris nominated album “The Poet’s Dead” along with tens of other albums. He has also toured, performed and showcased with a myriad of Canadian artists from coast to coast, including: Rah Rah, Library Voices, Jenn Grant, Jason Plumb, Surf Dads, Rococode, In-Flight Safety, Sylvie, Nate Hilts (of the Dead South), Northern Beauties, Chris Sleightholm, and many others. Jeff brings a unique viewpoint of what it’s like to navigate the music industry from a player’s perspective. He lives with his super enchanting and intelligent girlfriend and two huge rescue dogs.
Jeff joins the Career Tracks Program with experience in: touring, showcasing, recording, negotiation, labels, management, booking agents, performing, auditioning and recording.
Marvin Tontiwachwuthikul Chan, better known by his stage alter-ego Merv xx Gotti, is the singer of WCMA-nominated Canadian hip-hop/R&B duo Samurai Champs, and has toured internationally, performing in festivals such as SXSW, NXNE, The Great Escape, and Reeperbahn. Marvin is also the Artistic Director of SK-based arts & cultural festival and artist collective, Trifecta, through which he has facilitated events such as: Trifecta Music Festival, Trifecta Block Party, and Trifecta Concert Series. He also coordinates Trifecta Artist Collective, facilitating creative career development for artists such as LOA, VBRTR, and Tefrondon.
Marvin currently holds a BASc in Software Systems Engineering, and is completing his Master’s in Interdisciplinary Studies, focusing on the cross-section between software engineering and creative technologies. His thesis, The Application of Agile Software Development Methodologies towards Trifecta and the Independent Arts, was discussed in the VICE Noisey article, Meet the Student Using His Master’s Thesis to Unite His Local Music Scene. He continues his work in developing Trifecta and “The New Sound of the Prairies”.
Marvin joins the Career Tracks Program provide consultation and advice regarding: international showcasing, self-management, self-booking, live events, live performance.
Having fronted bands since she was fifteen years old, Elsa Gebremichael has many years of experience in the Saskatchewan and Canadian music scene and continues to grow as a self-managed musician, singer, songwriter, producer and performer. She's currently developing and releasing music from her solo project, WILD BLACK, but in her previous projects such as We Were Lovers, From Chimpan-A to Chimpan-Z, and The Radiation Flowers, Elsa has toured throughout Europe and North America, showcased at festivals such as SXSW, NXNE, HPX, CMJ, Sasktel Jazz Festival and BIME in Spain, and has opened for notable acts such as Tegan and Sara, Metric, Janelle Monae, Mother Mother, New York Dolls and more. Elsa has secured music license syncs to TV, film and radio (the CBC Radio One Saskatoon Morning theme song is a WWL song!), was nominated for a WCMA for Pop Recording of the Year and performed at the first Afropunk festival in NYC.
Elsa is an experienced grant-writer and has successfully secured funding from organizations such as the Sask Arts Board (SAB), Creative Sask, FACTOR, SOCAN Foundation, and the Canada Council for the Arts, as well been a jury member for SAB and FACTOR. She's done everything from co-recording / producing / mixing albums, to tour booking and publicity, poster and website design, social media management, and directing and producing music videos and photo shoots for herself and others. She also volunteers as an organizer, mentor and instructor with Girls Rock Camp Saskatoon - a camp that empowers girls, non-binary, trans and gender non-conforming youth through the creation and performance of music as well as through social justice, confidence enhancing and skill developing workshops. Fostering inclusiveness and increasing representation of women, people of color, queer, non-binary and trans folks in the Canadian music scene is super important to Elsa and she strives to make growth and change happen where this representation is lacking.
Elsa joins the Career Tracks Program to offer advice and assistance on: grant-writing, tour booking, producing, self-management, poster and web design, and music videos.
Lorena is a longtime staff member of SaskMusic and seen many phases of the music industry. Currently Communications & Operations Manager for SaskMusic, former coordinator of the Flatland Music Festival (which ran for 10 years) and many other live events and workshops, and an artist/songwriter/freelance musician herself, she specializes in helping artists with their overall marketing strategies and business plans. She also addresses questions regarding songwriting, including demo critiques; live performance; and more. She is well-versed in social media strategies, design and publicity, and enjoys nearly every genre of music, with a special fondness for a well-crafted hook. She has sat on juries for numerous major funders and awards shows in Canada and volunteered for numerous music orgs and boards.
Lorena is a professional singer/songwriter and musician, having performed as a freelance side player in jazz, rock, pop and country bands in Canada, the U.S. and overseas, on everything from army bases to gala awards shows. She has also toured with her own original alt/pop/country music, receiving pop chart airplay and garnering prime time TV performance spots in adult contemporary/pop.
Lorena is available to meet with artists on a variety questions including grant applications, songwriting, and marketing.
Kaelen received his Arts and Entertainment Management Diploma from Capilano University in North Vancouver and now resides in Saskatoon. He manages the export and professional development programs for SaskMusic. Kaelen has been actively involved in the Canadian music industry for the past 18 years as a musician, manager, production manager, promoter, and running his own music publishing company. He is also a jury member for various music organizations and sits on numerous cultural boards including co-director of the Derek Bachman Foundation and the 2020 JUNO Host Committee.
Kaelen is available to meet with artists on a wide spectrum of questions including grant applications, music publishing, touring, international showcasing and marketing.
Michael booked his first tour at the age of 17 and never looked back. Now, 15 years later, Dawson is the manager, lyricist, and a multi-instrumentalist for Library Voices. He also owns and runs Young Soul Records, which belongs to the EMI Associated Labels Division. He has extensive experience in the music industry including booking tours, marketing and promotion, and obtaining funding. He has performed at nearly every major industry showcase and festival in Canada including NXNE, Pop Montreal, CMW, Ottawa Blues Fest, Rifflandia, Calgary Folk Fest, and at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. He has been nominated for three WCMA awards and five CBC Radio 3 Bucky Awards. He has also sat on many juries including FACTOR and the Lieutenant-Governor Awards. Dawson spent the last five years serving as the Artistic Director of the Culture Exchange, where he booked and/or promoted over 400 concerts a year. He holds a degree in Arts Education from the University of Regina.
Hayley Muir is a Calgary-based broadcaster, musician and artistic director. She is currently the Music DIrector at CJSW 90.9 FM, Calgary's only campus and community radio station. Hayley is also a co-founder of and the Artistic Director for Femme Wave Feminist Arts Festival, and is a member of feminist punk band The Shiverettes. Hayley has been involved in the music and arts scene in Calgary for over ten years and has been a broadcaster at both CJSW and CKUA, Alberta's Radio Network. She is currently the host of Soul Food on CJSW Friday mornings 7-10am. Hayley has also worked in publishing as a designer at BeatRoute Magazine, and has extensive experience in marketing, advertising, and the non-profit sector.
Hayley joins the Career Tracks Program to offer advice and assistance on: Public & Community Radio, including distribution, promotion and interview skills, Print Media, Marketing, publicity, press releases, bios, and EPKs.
Blind Bay BC
Jessica is an artist manager and consultant based out of Edmonton who has worked in the music industry in various roles for over 10 years. With diplomas in Music and Arts & Cultural Management from MacEwan University, along with recent completion of CMI's Artist Manager Program, she recognizes the challenges that musicians and industry face in order to develop locally and export globally. She has worked for various music festivals as well as the Alberta Music Industry Association for five years, focusing on a number of initiatives (the PEAK Performance Project, Project WILD and career consultations with members). Since the launch of her company JAM Music Mgmt in 2017, she has assisted over 40 acts to gain a broader understanding of marketing strategies around album releases, team building, career and tour planning. She currently manages prairie rockers Altameda and alt-country singer songwriter Mariel Buckley.
Jessica joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including: album release strategies, team building, brand development, diversifying revenue streams, tour planning, and streaming as a social platform.
Note: Jessica offers one consult per SaskMusic member. If wishing to book additional consults, members are encouraged to contact and book JAM Music Mgmt directly.
Edmonton, AB / Toronto, ON
For years Jesse primarily worked as recording engineer and producer for bands across Western Canada but soon fell into other music jobs as his interest for the music industry grew. Jesse worked as the Program Manager at Alberta Music in 2017 and has since started his own music company, Dandelion Music Group. A mobile lifestyle has Jesse bouncing between Toronto, Edmonton, and music conferences around the world.
Jesse is a well-versed in grant writing, marketing plans, radio mail-outs, and general music business strategy. Since the start of 2018, Jesse has successfully secured grant money for clients such as Melted Mirror, Marlaena Moore, Scenic Route To Alaska, Amy Nelson, Faith Healer, and countless more. He is also the front-man and songwriter for the band Jesse and the Dandelions who recently released a new psychedelic-pop record called Give Up The Gold (2018).
Whether he's working as a live broadcast engineer for CKUA, producing the band Major Love in his home studio, or program managing Project Wild 2017, his diverse set of jobs keep him tune with the broader music scene and puts him in the position of being a great resource to those looking to produce music, or move themselves forward in their career. He's building infrastructure for the Western Canadian music community and is working towards being an effective artist manager, and facilitator of international showcases.
Jesse joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including: grant writing, radio, performance royalties, marketing plans, recording, management, and more.
Adrienne LaBelle is the Project Coordinator at Mint Records and a musician. She has been involved in the Vancouver music community since 2007 as a multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, recording artist, and performer. She has played in several projects over the years, including Aunts & Uncles, Movieland, Cult Babies, Supermoon, Energy Slime, Jay Arner and most recently, Garbage Dreams.
A self-proclaimed road-dog, she has toured extensively since 2011 in North America, Europe, and Japan, and has showcased at acclaimed festivals such as the Vancouver International Jazz Festival, Rifflandia, SappyFest, Halifax Pop Explosion, Pop Montreal, Sled Island, and SXSW.
She has spent many years volunteering in the music industry, and served on the Board of Directors for the Safe Amplification Site Society from 2012-2015, which included running an all ages venue. She has worked casually over the years as a show promoter in Vancouver, and has booked several successful DIY tours in North America. She currently sits on the jury for Music BC's travel grant program as well as FACTOR's Juried Sound Recording and Artist Development grant programs.
Adrienne started working as an intern at Mint Records in 2015 in between tours, and in early 2018 settled into a full-time position as Project Coordinator at the label. Her role is dynamic, and can range from grant writing, tour booking, A&R, radio tracking, event organizing, PR, and all the many other things that may come up in the span of a day at a small but busy label. Her next move is to venture into the world of podcasting, with a few new projects on the horizon.
Adrienne joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including: DIY touring, showcasing, grant writing, and A&R.
Matt Maw (Chippewas of the Thames First Nation) is the Director & Lead Artist Manager at Red Music Rising. Matt brings over 10 years of multi-faceted music industry experience to RMR, along with a passion for artist development and a mission to amplify Canada's Indigenous artists on the global stage. Throughout his career, Matt has worked with some of Canada's most celebrated artists, Indigenous and otherwise, including Tanya Tagaq, William Prince, Riit, Jeremy Dutcher, Broken Social Scene, and BANNERS, among others. A graduate of the Harris Institute for the Arts, Matt has previously worked alongside organizations including Arts & Crafts Productions, Six Shooter Records and New Constellations.
Matt joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions concerning: grant writing, artist management, self-management, & team building.
Arun Chaturvedi is a Toronto based Producer, Songwriter, and Multi-Instrumentalist. He has worked with a diverse roster of artists including Lamont Dozier, Felix Cavaliere, Luke McMaster and Jim Brickman and for record labels such as Sony, Universal, Green Hill, Killer Tracks and many more.
In addition to winning Western Canadian Music Awards for Producer of The Year, Best R&B Recording, and Best Aboriginal Recording, Arun has multiple Juno nominations as producer for artists Little Hawk and Desiree Dorion.
The classically trained pianist is also an in-demand composer for Film and Television whose credits include hit TV shows like Keeping Up With The Kardashians, General Hospital, PJ Masks, Pretty Little Liars, and many more.
Arun currently serves as Treasurer of the Songwriter’s Association of Canada, and is a director of The SOCAN Foundation.
Mississauga ON / Nashville TN
Songwriter and producer Robyn Dell'Unto is dedicated to helping artists achieve their creative goals. Her distinctive artist-relations style and interconnected approach to songwriting and production has resulted in over 100 commercial cuts since 2013 including SOCAN #1 I See Gold for Good Lovelies, recent Canadian pop radio add DCMO for LU KALA, Cause You Did for Willa and I Don’t Sleep for Emma Lamontagne, as well as recent singles for Emma-Lee, Jadea Kelly, Virago, Rosie & the Riveters, Stacey Kay, Leah Daniels and more. Originally from Toronto, she is currently based in Nashville with her photographer husband and two cats.
As a solo artist, Dell'Unto's songs have been featured in 50+ television episodes, films and commercial campaigns including Wynonna Earp, Being Erica, Kim's Convenience, Degrassi, Harriet The Spy, Time Freak (staring Sophie Turner) and campaigns for Smart Set and Zara. Singles from her self-produced 2017 record Beaconsfield remain in heavy rotation on CBC national programs. Her 2014 record Little Lines was nominated for a Canadian Folk Music Award and her 2010 debut single Just A Bird (Orange Lounge/Universal Music) spent 35 weeks in the Top 10 on South Africa’s Algoa FM.
Dell'Unto founded A Song Of My Own songwriting workshops for kids (formerly offered in Toronto District School Board and Montessori schools) as well as Logic X production workshops for women.
Robyn joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions concerning: anything related to music industry navigation including artist development, branding, licensing, co-writing, production, networking, fundraising, radio promotions and mental health.
Dan Hawie is a Toronto-based Project Manager / A&R at Last Gang Records. He also handles all Canadian operations for Dualtone Records. He has worked with several Grammy and JUNO-nominated artists over the past decade, and is currently overseeing record cycles for The Lumineers, Chromeo, Rhye, Holy Fuck, Mt. Joy, Operators, Loving and more. Prior to joining Last Gang/Dualtone, Dan worked as a Marketing Manager for a number of years at Dine Alone Records.
Dan joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions concerning: indie labels, building your team, all levels of marketing, album release strategy, navigating streaming and best practices, social media presence, publicity, press releases, bios, EPKs, public and community radio, commercial radio, brand strategy, etc.
Sarah holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the Sobey School of Business at Saint Mary’s University as well as a diploma in Business Administration from the Nova Scotia Community College. She has a diverse background in sales, marketing, and entrepreneurship that brings a unique perspective when working with artists. In 2015, Sarah met Laura Simpson, Founder of The Syrup Factory and started dipping her toes into the music industry in Nova Scotia. Sarah became a Co-Owner of The Syrup Factory in April 2018. She manages the day-to-day of The Syrup Factory and leads strategy to help artists better connect with their audiences.
Sarah Jamer joins the Career Tracks Program with advice and assistance on: project management, business strategy, release strategy, marketing, conferences, and touring logistics.
Corner Brook, NFL
Nigel P. Jenkins is a graduate of the Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University, with a Certificate in Entertainment Law from Osgoode Hall Law School. Nigel is an artist manager and record label owner based in Steady Brook, NL. Through his company, Laughing Heart Music/LHM Records, Nigel has worked with Classified, Heather Rankin, Ben Caplan, Hillsburn, The Lytics, and many other artists as a manager, label owner, and consultant. Nigel has sat on the boards of the Halifax Pop Explosion Music Festival and the Halifax Urban Folk Festival. He was nominated for the 2018 Nova Scotia Music Week Artist Manager of the Year Award, and the 2017 East Coast Music Award for Artist Manager of the Year.
Nigel joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including: booking and touring, national and international showcasing, grant writing, self-management, album release planning, marketing, business plan development, campus radio, and publicity.
Melissa MacMaster, has gained valuable business management experience from her previous roles working in Atlantic Canada’s entrepreneurial eco-system and start-up community for over 7 years where youth entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses, and also co-founding the Global Youth Innovation Network in Benin, West Africa. Transferring her high caliber business skill set to the music industry, Melissa successfully launched 902Hiphop operating as an artist management and music licensing and sync company.
Melissa joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions concerning: the Canadian hip-hop industry, artist management, music licensing and sync placements, and building international partnerships in the U.S and Europe.
Alexis Normand’s voice can be both soulful and seductive, like the beckoning prairie breeze blowing across the landscape, whether she’s performing her jazz-folk melodies in English or French. Recently named Francophone Artist of the Year by the Western Canadian Music Awards, Alexis has also been nominated for several other awards including a Canadian Folk Music Award and a Lieutenant Governor’s Arts Award in Saskatchewan.
In addition to being an accomplished singer-songwriter, she is a multi-instrumentalist and member of the internationally-touring folk trio, Rosie & the Riveters. The band was just honored with a Social Action Award for their song, “I Believe You” at the Independent Music Awards (U.S.) and crowned Roots Group of the Year at the Western Canadian Music Awards in 2019.
Alexis has been a full-time independent artist since 2009 and takes her business to heart, crafting everything from release strategies, to marketing plans and grant applications with careful attention. She has received grant support from anglophone and francophone funding bodies in Canada to help bring her solo projects and those she undertakes with Rosie & the Riveters to fruition. This includes creating projects, recording albums/EPs/demos, marketing initiatives (radio tracking, music videos, publicity, online advertising, etc.), touring (across Canada and the U.S.) as well as domestic and international showcase opportunities like Folk Alliance International, Americana Music Fest and Reeperbahn. Alexis worked on juries for many grant-funding organisations such as the Saskatchewan Arts Board, Canada Council for the Arts and Musicaction. She has also served on various boards such as Folk Music Canada, the Conseil culturel fransaskois, l’Alliance nationale de l’industrie musicale (ANIM).
Alexis joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including: grant applications, project management, touring, self-booking, self-management/career planning, marketing plans, recording and francophone music industry knowledge.
Orion Paradis is a Saskatchewan music producer who works out of his own recording studio, SoulSound (which shares a building & inspiration with its sister studio, FadaDance). As a producer & engineer, Orion is very active in Regina's local community of bands, recording with artists such as Megan Nash, Etienne Fletcher, Wolf Willow, Library Voices, The Dead South, Belle Plaine, Kacy & Clayton, The Extroverts, Natural Sympathies, Beach Body & The Spationauts. Orion has a lot of knowledge of the music business in Saskatchewan - from creating albums, to performing heavily remixed DJ sets, to production work for dance and theatre companies, he has navigated a wide swath of musical exploration and events – experience which can be shared with the SaskMusic board. Some career highlights include: 2018 - #1 Stingray Satellite Radio (Etienne Fletcher - Cherie Cheri), 2017 SaskMusic #1 Album 2017 (Megan Nash – Seeker), 2017 YouTube Viral - 65 million views (The Dead South - In Hell I'll Be In Good Company), 2016 Nominated Recording of the Year WCMA (Library Voices - Lovish), 2013 CBC #1 National Song of the Summer (Indigo Joseph - Others), 2009 Nominated Independent Album of the Year WCMA (Library Voices – Hunting Ghosts EP).
Orion joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including: All stages of studio music production (including pre-production, recording, mixing & mastering), delivery of recorded material to various formats (CD, Vinyl, Cassette, Streaming, etc), how to interact with a studio & how to get the most value and use a studio effectively, recording yourself (how to get the best results), small business skills (how to market yourself and land jobs in the gig economy), and live sound – how to make a stage plot and communicate your tech needs in advance of a gig/festival.
Earl Pereira got his rock n’ roll pedigree as a founding member of Wide Mouth Mason, who had 3 gold records, three 3 JUNO nominations and a host of other accolades and awards. He has toured the world, playing nearly 3000 shows and opening for iconic acts such as The Rolling Stones, AC/DC, The Guess Who, Alanis Morissette, Van Morrison, The Tragically Hip, and many more. Pereira was also named one of Canada's top bassists in Canadian Musician Magazine.
After establishing himself as one of the more entertaining musicians in Canada, Pereira began to work as a performance coach inspired from both his love for performing and watching the world renowned ‘live producer’ Tom Jackson at a workshop during Canadian Music Week in 2008. Over the past 10 years, Pereira has coached over 200 artists and bands helping drastically improve their live shows and ability to impactfully connect with audiences. Pereira has held workshops at high profile conferences such as Peak Performance Project, Song Rise Conference, and Breakout West.
Earl joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions surrounding performance coaching and live producing. Helping drastically improve an artist's ability to perform live and how to connect with an audience, overcome nerves, make more effective set lists, properly rehearse, own the stage, create magic moments, and to stand out from your peers.
Neena Sharma is an independent Grant Writer, and the Project Manager with the Toronto based record label URBNET. She has been a juror with multiple funding organizations including FACTOR and Creative Saskatchewan, and is a mentor with SaskMusic’s Career Tracks program. She has also been a nomination judge for several Canadian music award ceremonies, including the JUNO Awards. Neena is a graduate of York University and has been working in the music industry since 2016. Although born in the U.K., Neena grew up in Ajax, ON, before eventually moving to Toronto. As a teenager, she loved visiting Criminal Records on Queen St. West, and trying to get into 19+ shows.
Within her position with URBNET, she has contributed to projects that have secured WCMA and Music NL awards, and is involved with securing OMF (Ontario Creates) and FACTOR grants. She is also part of the publicity team and contributes to A&R efforts. As an independent Grant Writer, Neena has developed grants for artists and record labels applying to funding organizations across Canada. Neena is an active volunteer with the Feminist Art Collective of Toronto and was a festival coordinator for the 2020 exhibition at OCAD. She currently resides in St. John’s, Newfoundland and can usually be spotted with her little dog in tow.
Neena joins the Career Tracks program to provide consultation and assistance with questions including: grant applications and label administration.
Diedra Wandel is a Toronto-based music industry professional, working as the Manager of Programs & Financing at indie-label Arts & Crafts Productions. With eight years at the company, Diedra has held roles related to administration, marketing, and digital album production. For the past five years, she has specialized in organizing funding for marketing, sound recording, live event and business development initiatives. In addition to her work with grants, over the last six years, Diedra has worked closely on Field Trip Music & Arts Festival, a 2-day multi-platform festival held each June in downtown Toronto. The nature of her live event work has primarily been in the events’ coordination and logistics.
Diedra joins the program to provide advice and assistance on: grant funding, applications and reconciliation, event coordination, and production.