Saskatchewan at North America's Premiere Folk Gathering

New Orleans LA, January 22-25/2020

by SaskMusic

January 7, 2020 in SaskMusic News

SaskMusic is pleased to present four Saskatchewan artists in New Orleans, Louisiana, January 22-25, 2020 as we return to the annual Folk Alliance International Conference, Camp, Show & Awards. Joining together in a partnership under the banner of BreakOut West, artists from Manitoba Music, Alberta Music, Music BC and SaskMusic will perform in private showcases for the thousands of international music industry professionals in attendance. Folk Alliance International provides the opportunity to share ideas, network, and celebrate traditional music and dance.

Saskatchewan artists participating this year are Poor Nameless Boy (who is also performing Official Showcases at the invitation of Folk Alliance); Valerie Raye, The North Sound, and Gunner & Smith. Showcases take place at the Sheraton New Orleans, downtown in the heart of the French Quarter. In addition to performing, the artists will attend the Folk Alliance conference and keynote sessions, industry tradeshow, and be able to take advantage of networking opportunities throughout the weekend with talent buyers, festival bookers, radio programmers, record labels and many others from around the world, all oriented on the folk, roots and world music industries. The four were selected by an industry jury following a call for submissions distributed to the SaskMusic membership

With SaskMusic fresh off of export opportunities in Montreal (M for Montreal, November 2019), Halifax (Halifax Pop Explosion, October 2019) Germany (Reeperbahn Festival, September 2019), Nashville (The Americana Music Conference, September 2019), and numerous others, we are excited to present this business development opportunity for our artists. We will be in New Orleans to assist our artists with promotion of their showcases and network with delegates from around the world, following up on connections we have cultivated at previous events. In addition to assisting our artists while in New Orleans, SaskMusic is working with the artists in advance of the event to ensure they are prepared to maximize its opportunities. 

BreakOut West page:

Spotify mix playlist of BreakOut West artists:

Poor Nameless Boy

Wed Jan 22: 10:30-11:30pm The Alberta Room, Room 1122
Wed Jan 22: 12-12:20am BreakOut West showcase, Room 820
Fri Jan 24: 1-1:20am BreakOut West showcase, Room 820
Sat Jan 25: 4:30-5:05pm OFFICIAL FA showcase, Grand Chenier (5th Floor)
Sat Jan 25: 11-11:30pm Ladies in Waiting presents La Revolution, Room 1109
Sat Jan 25: 1-1:15am Ontario Presents, Room 825

His soft, melodic delivery is born from a keen perception of the human condition. This understated authenticity is why you’ll find Poor Nameless Boy on the fringes of something deeper than modern indie-folk. With shiver-worthy vocal tones reminiscent of Donovan Woods and Gregory Alan Isakov, Henderson’s stark vulnerability sets him apart. Since the release of Activity Book (2013) and Bravery (2016), he’s seen milestones including a worldwide publishing deal, international tours and showcases (The Great Escape, Reeperbahn, Australian Music Week and more), and a Global Music Award for Folk. Using a measured sparsity, Henderson has found a perfect dynamic to tell the deeply affecting stories brought to life on 2019’s “Wake Up Call”.

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Valerie Raye

Wed Jan 22: 2-2:20am BreakOut West showcase, Room 820
Fri Jan 24: 11-11:20pm BreakOut West showcase, Room 820

Valerie Raye is a singer, songwriter, guitarist, drummer, piano player, producer, and audio engineer from Regina SK. She has been writing songs since she was 5 years old, and touring Canada, the U.S., and Europe for the last 12 years. She has been described as “Sheryl Crow meets Joan Jett,” or “Courtney Love meets the Allman Brothers.” Valerie has recently founded Prairie Sound Records - a label promoting music and culture from the prairies of Canada and the Indigenous Nations of the western plains. She will be releasing her newest effort “Gravel Roads” in 2020.

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The North Sound

Thur Jan 23:1:30-1:50am BreakOut West showcase, Room 820
Sat Jan 25: 10:30-10:50pm BreakOut West showcase, Room 820
Sat Jan 25: 2:15-2:40am FAI Indigenous Voices, Room 1209

The North Sound is cold like a Saskatchewan winter. It's humid as a summer day in the streets of Montreal. As unpredictable as the weather in a singular Calgary day. The North Sound is ever-changing with the world around us, encompassing each and every pivotal moment, from road trips as a kid to finding your way as an adult. It's feeling lost but knowing you're loved. The North Sound was formed in 2014 by Forrest Eaglespeaker to share his stories, in an attempt at trying to close the gap reflected in the vast space of the open Canadian landscape.

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Gunner & Smith

Thur Jan 23: 11:30-11:50pm BreakOut West showcase, Room 820
Sat Jan 25: 12:30-12:50am BreakOut West showcase, Room 820

Hope and redemption. Philosophy and folklore. The music of Gunner & Smith has always been a collection of fiery elements, blending searing guitars, brawny rhythms and distinct folk-family vocals to produce tightly-knit rock anthems. On Byzantium, the group’s second full-length album, the songs simmer and seethe with a newfound brooding energy that looks at the darker sides of love, loss and humanity.

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About Folk Alliance International

Since 1989, Folk Alliance® has served as the headquarters for Folk Music and Dance. With over 2800 members worldwide and an annual conference that is one of the five largest music conferences in North America, Folk Alliance continues to grow and mature while providing a unique range of member services to their community. Over the years, their community has grown to include record companies, publishers, presenters, agents, managers, music support services, manufacturers and artists that work in the folk world. Folk Alliance has five regional affiliates that provide the grass roots efforts in their respective markets. Folk Alliance International exists to foster and promote traditional, contemporary, and multicultural folk music and dance and related performing arts. 

About SaskMusic

SaskMusic is a non-profit association that stimulates growth and development in the commercial music industry of the province of Saskatchewan, Canada through leadership, promotion, training, advocacy and partnership. We offer programming including career consultations, workshops, marketing, artist listings, export assistance, networking opportunities and much more. We represent the four components of our industry: creative, interpretive, technical and administrative. Our artists and music professionals hail from across Saskatchewan, and produce music in every genre you can imagine. We are a source of information and resources for both the public, and the music industry.


Participation in this export initiative is made possible through Creative Saskatchewan's Market & Export Development Grant Program.