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Here come the Junos. What does that mean for Vancouver?

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The Juno Awards come to Vancouver March 25 2018

Last year, the Junos announced that the this year’s awards show would be held in Vancouver. Specifically, at Rogers Arena. It’s the first time since 2009 that the Canadian music awards show has come to town. To host, they’ve tapped Burnaby-raised crooner Michael Bublé.

The event is perhaps the biggest thing to happen to Vancouver’s music scene since the Cultural Olympiad. It’s not on the same scale. But the nationally televised show’s presence is still a big deal.

Along with the awards ceremony itself, the Host Committee is sponsoring a series of events. In partnership with Creative BC and Music BC, the committee called for proposals from promoters, artists and venues in the fall of last year. The committee received over 100 submissions in a four-week window for the program. For its first-ever Experience Music Program Grant Initiative, over 30 grant recipients throughout the province were selected to participate in what is being called Let’s Hear It B.C. (I know). These showcases start today (Feb. 2) and run until March 24.

Alas, there’s not much info currently on the letshearitbc.com website. (Nominees for the 2018 Junos will be announced Feb. 6.) I’ve picked a few events that look like they might be interesting, along with what details I could find. Below, you’ll also find some info on the 2018 Juno Awards, including ticket cost, performers, and coconut water budget. (Just kidding about the last one.)

Let’s Hear It BC events

High School Battle of the Bands—This weekly showcase begins Feb. 3 (tomorrow!). Participants receive performance and stage setup coaching and mentorship by instructors from Nimbus School of Recording (one of the sponsors). The winning band will receive a mentor session with guitarist Dave Genn, among other prizes. Dates are Feb. 3, 10, 17, and 25, with the grand finale on March 5. The all-ages shows are at the Roxy (which is exactly where you want your teenager to spend some time) and begin at noon, with a $5 cover.

February Rez Blues—This showcase of indigenous blues artists started in 1993 in Toronto. For the Vancouver edition, vocalist Dalannah Gail Bowen will open. The Murray Porter Band (with Buffy Sainte-Marie‘s drummer Michel Bruyere and Elaine Bomberry are also on the bill. Feb. 16 at 9 p.m., Fairview Pub.

Beatroute Magazine Presents BC Extreme!—No info as yet. But if the name is any indication, it won’t feature the Booms Booms. Feb. 22, Venue TBA.

604 Records presents Comedy Showcase—Again, no info on this one. I’m betting that Shirley Gnome will be featured though, since she’s the Vancouver label’s most recent signing. March 21, venue TBA.

Mint Records Presents—The Vancouver indie label presents a four-band bill. Kelarissa (Larissa Loyva) headlines. Also: Devours, Hello, Blue Roses, and Mourning Coup. March 22, Red Gate Revue Stage.

Juno Awards 2018 Vancouver
Bublé. Photo courtesy Evaan Kheraj/michaelbuble.com.

2018 Juno Awards ceremony at Rogers Arena, March 25

The main event! As mentioned, Bublé hosts. Former Much Music head Denise Donlon will receive the 2018 Walt Grealis Special Achievement Award. The Barenaked Ladies will be inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame. From the looks of junoawards.ca, performers have yet to be announced (all the nominees are up, though). I’m guessing Alessia Cara and The Wknd, who were both up for Grammys, will perform. Tickets range from $59-189 (also available: platinum tickets for way more) at ticketmaster.ca.

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