This week I fly out to Toronto (unfortunately, on United Airlines...wish me luck) for my third Canadian Music Week, the annual music business conference and festival.

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In addition to having the pleasure of being on the panel, "Brands in the Music Space: A Debate on the Pros and Cons" (sorry, couldn't resist the plug), attending sessions, reuniting with our unofficial music festival family (you know who you are), and hearing Live Nation's Michael Rapino speak, catching local Canadian bands and international acts is a top priority.

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In 2016, Canadian Music Week will showcase over 1,000 bands in the 10-day run of the music festival. And while all the musicians are playing their hearts out at night, during the day the business side of music is being discussed and intelligence shared during the 3-Day Music Summit, May 5-7, with executives and performers alike taking part in panels, keynotes, interviews, networking opportunities and workshops, covering social media, live touring, technology, and the global world of creation.

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It’s cold and raining snow outside when it should be sunny and warm by this time of year. Trump just won more states in this nutbag of a U.S. presidential primary. “Bad News” notifications keep popping up on my mobile. I need to escape. I need relief. I settle into a bar stool at a favourite haunt, whip out the laptop, and click on Smoove & Terrell’s “Beggerman” video. Oh, yeah…

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It’s deeply captivating to follow an artist through the chapters of their musical journeys, taking turns and paths into new territories, hearing and seeing them mature, stretch, and build their songwriting muscles. Peeking into the keyhole of Wild Nothing’s new album, Life of Pause (Captured Tracks), and then joining Jack Tatum in his grown up listening lounge is not only a joy, it’s an entry into his world.

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When Shain Shapiro, the managing director of Sound Diplomacy, took the TEDxBerkleeValencia stage in Spain last year, he began with a simple yet huge question, “So what if music – all of it -- disappeared? It didn’t exist,” he then paused, “Think about it.”

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