City funds fifty-seven music projects by Indigenous and underrepresented communities through Vancouver Music Fund
July 29, 2021
The City of Vancouver, in partnership with Creative BC, is providing $300,000 in funding to support 57 music projects through the second round of the Vancouver Music Fund.

The City of Vancouver, in partnership with Creative BC, is providing $300,000 in funding to support 57 music projects through the second round of the Vancouver Music Fund

Funded projects include Tahltan/Tlingit, Two-Spirit artist Edzi'u and producer Lin Gardiner who will collaborate on a demo recording; The Black Lab Artist Society's "100 Block Rock 2" compilation album featuring music from DTES residents; and Music Waste, an annual independent, non-profit music and art festival.

"We are thrilled to work with Creative BC to amplify the voices of Indigenous and underrepresented musicians and support the next generation of Vancouver artists and organizations that are shaping our city's remarkable music scene," said Jarrett Martineau, Music Officer for the City of Vancouver. "Local music plays a vital role in our local economy and in creating a diverse, healthy city and creative sector, and we're proud to invest in opportunities that increase equity for communities that continue to experience barriers to access and funding." 

"Creative BC is proud to partner again with the City of Vancouver to support and invest in emerging artists and industry professionals who have historically experienced systemic barriers to funding," said Prem Gill, CEO of Creative BC. "We look forward to seeing what these talented voices create as they contribute to the cultural vibrancy of Vancouver."

Emcee and songwriter Kapok, and filmmaker Rana Sowdaey received $10,000 to film a music video for Kapok's track, "There You Go Again."

Speaking to the impact of this grant, Kapok said, "As an Independent artist, I have always had to work within the scope of my means and certain limitations. Through the Vancouver Music Fund, I will be able to see what happens when these limitations are dissolved, and I am free to be creative well outside of my bounds." 

Sowdaey added, "We all want to find good music, but it's hard for musicians to stand out and to connect to audiences in a new way; this funding will help us get that for Kapok. Supporting his narrative and getting his music shared through this video means supporting an interesting and unique voice within Vancouver's music scene. Plus, it's a relief to get support to do that from organizations in our hometown."

Projects funded through the Vancouver Music Fund

The Vancouver Music Fund will be distributed through three programs. Descriptions of the programs and examples of supported projects include:
 

  1. Demo recording program, 30 projects funded

This program supports new and emerging artists from underrepresented groups to create demo recordings and engage in mentorship and skill development with a BC producer.

JUNO-nominated Vancouver musician and producer, A-SLAM, will receive $2,000 to work with Bollywood fusion producer ishQ Bector to record a demo. A-SLAM’s work focuses on Indian fusion music, as showcased by his last track with ishQ Bector, “Tera Swag,” which has received more than 100,000 streams across various streaming platforms.

  1. Music video program, 10 projects funded

This program supports the creation of music videos for new and emerging artists from underrepresented groups to help reach new audiences.

NADUH, a group made up of five queer women, write, engineer, and produce all their music. NADUH will receive $10,000 to work with Quetzalli Berthelet-Valera, a Vancouver-based 3D artist, to create a music video. NADUH promotes diverse representations of gender fluidity/androgyny, skin colour, body types, and styles and want underrepresented people to feel seen and included with their art.

  1. Industry catalyst program, 17 projects funded

This program supports projects that develop Vancouver’s music ecosystem and build the capacity of underrepresented groups and communities.

Locals Lounge will receive $7,500 to support the planning, marketing, and data collection and analysis of seven events that encourage community and collaboration within the Vancouver music scene over a one-year period. Three of the events support IBPOC (Indigenous, Black and People of Colour) communities specifically, and the remaining events support the development of young talent.

The Vancouver Music Fund is the first municipal fund of its kind in North America that provides direct support to Indigenous and underrepresented musicians, artists, and groups in Vancouver’s music sector. To view the full list of recipients, and to learn more about the Fund, visit Creative BC’s website.

Since the initial round of funding in 2019, the City has seen a 50% increase in applications; this is a testament to the robust and vibrant nature of the music scene in Vancouver, and to the acute need for targeted investments such as the Vancouver Music Fund.

The Fund supports the strategic recommendations of the Vancouver Music Strategy and the City’s 10-year culture plan, Culture|Shift, which aim to shift and re-prioritize support and to amplify a diverse music and cultural sector.

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