Casino Nova Scotia Artist in Residence Program Top 5 Artists Announced

Public Voting Now Open 
Final Showcase Performance Taking Place Friday, June 10th

(May 26, 2016 Halifax, NS) Casino Nova Scotia is excited to announce the finalists for the Artist in Residence Program 2016. Jurors made the selection following interviews this week. Five stellar candidates, plus a wild card pick will move onto the performance round of the selection process on Friday, June 10 in The Schooner Room at Casino Nova Scotia at 8:00 PM.

Finalists are (in alphabetical order):

Andre Pettipas and the Giants - Antigonish County – Alternative/Rock

Dave Sampson – Sydney – Folk/Pop

Fiona Alone – Albert Bridge  – Singer/Songwriter (Wild Card)

Laurenn Marchand – Louisdale – Folk/Pop

Port Cities – Sydney – Roots/Pop

Quake Matthews – Halifax – Hip Hop

“Casino Nova Scotia is excited to be hosting its 3rd Artist in Resident finale on June 10 in the Schooner Showroom,” stated Ken Murray, Director of Operations of Casino Nova Scotia. “The caliber of musicians who applied this year was incredible, and made the work of selecting the finalists so very difficult for all of the judges. As in previous years, the diversity in musical styles will interest everyone and I encourage you to vote online for your favourite artist and attend  the free finale to cheer them on.”

According to Music Nova Scotia Executive Director, Scott Long the commitment of financial support from Casino Nova Scotia for the program is invaluable for artists in Nova Scotia. “The $20,000 prize provided by Casino Nova Scotia will have a real tangible effect for the winning artist. We have seen it first hand working with The Brood and Reeny Smith. This investment allows the artist to focus on their craft and and take advantage of business opportunities that would not otherwise be possible without this support”.

The Casino Nova Scotia Artist in Residence program will provide the selected musician or group with $20,000 in investment to assist with developing their career through recording, marketing, and live performance opportunities.  Music Nova Scotia is working with Casino Nova Scotia to administer the program.

Music lovers and fans will have their chance to vote online from May 26 – June 9, which counts towards the selection of the finalist. The winner will be announced after the live performance by
our esteemed panel of judges: Mike Greatorex (Sonic Records), Ken Murray & Amie Moore (Casino Nova Scotia), Neil Spence (Radio 96.5 FM) & Steven MacDougall (Slowcoaster).

Please visit to vote for your favourite Nova Scotian artist. 

The public is welcome to come to the Showcase on June 10 at Casino Nova Scotia.

Free admission. Must be 19+.

The Casino Nova Scotia Artist in Residence Showcase Finals:
Friday, June 10 
Doors 7:30pm 
Showtime 8:00pm
Schooner Showroom, Casino Nova Scotia
Free admission must be 19+


For more information on Casino Nova Scotia’s Artist in Residence Program go to: or


More information on the 2016 Artist in Residence finalists:

Andre Pettipas and The Giants (Hometown: Antigonish County, Nova Scotia)
Andre Pettipas and The Giants are a three piece rock outfit based out of Antigonish County, Nova Scotia. Brothers, Andre and Travis have been playing together in bands for roughly six years. Completing the trifecta is drummer, Marcus Cosh who has been in their local music scene for roughly ten years. Andre Pettipas and The Giants’ debut album, Stay Gold, a project which; more than anything; speaks to versatility. Over the course of eight songs the audience is treated to a range of styles from the folk rock opener “Answers”, to the 90s alt rock inspired “Tragic Hero”, to the catchy pop hooks of current single “Long Way from Home”, to the bluesy punk mash up that closes out the record, “Common Ground”. There really is something for everyone. This harmony driven trio is a high energy band that is a treat to see live; hair flying, crowd engagement and leaving it on all on the stage is their forte.

Twitter: @apandthegiants

Dave Sampson (Hometown: Sydney)
Dave Sampson writes heart-on-your-sleeve folk/pop songs, delivered with a captivating and authentic voice that could blow down a brick house. His knack for crafting simple ear-worms and his high-energy shows have been winning him fans across Atlantic Canada for the past three years. Over this time, he has shared the stage and worked with artists such as Classified, Gordie Sampson, Mo Kenney and Ria Mae.

Twitter: @sampsondave

Fiona Alone (Hometown: Albert Bridge)
At the age of 26, Fiona MacGillivray is already a seasoned veteran of the music industry. Having toured internationally as lead singer of The Cottars for nearly a decade and a half—performing everywhere from Japan to Australia to Denmark, and on the hallowed stages of the Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall, among others—she is now following in the footsteps of songwriting father Allister MacGillivray in a solo project featuring her own wistful, heartbreaking material.


Laurenn Marchand (Hometown: Louisdale)
Cape Breton artist, Laurenn Marchand, has been catching the attention of audiences across the East Coast with her voice. Along with her East Coast success, which includes performances at festivals such as Stan Rogers Folk Festival, Granville Green concert series and Halifax pride, Marchand has gained National recognition with a Top 10 finish in the Much Music/Coca Cola Covers Contest, as well as slots in various showcases including the Honey Jam Showcase in Toronto and the Winnipeg Folk Festival Galaxie Young Performers Program.

Twitter: @laurennmarchand

Port Cities (Hometown: Sydney)
Stellar songs, dynamic vocals, and superior musicianship marks the emergence of Port Cities onto the Canadian music scene. An exciting new group from the east coast, Port Cities brings together the award winning talents of Carleton Stone, Breagh Mackinnon, and Dylan Guthro. Making music reminiscent of the best of The Civil Wars, Fleetwood Mac and Crosby Stills Nash, Port Cities promises to offer a harbour for lovers of great music with heart.

Twitter: @port_cities

Quake Matthews (Hometown: Halifax)
Halifax emcee Quake Matthews (formerly Quake) has proven that persistence, hard-work and passion go hand in hand to survive in this music industry. Since emerging from the underground battle rap scene in his early teens, the hungry street savvy lyricist has aimed to create a sound that brings back the classic essence of hip-hop. Within five years, Quake transformed his humble rap beginnings with groups like Fax4, into a slew of critically-acclaimed mixtapes and projects. With a relentless work ethic, Quake is a true testament to his East Coast upbringing. 

Twitter: @QuakeMatthews


For information on Artist in Residence 
Contact: Amie Moore
Phone: 902-496-4668

For information on Music Nova Scotia
Contact: Scott Long
2169 Gottingen Street, Halifax
Phone: 902-423-6271, ext. 101

Casino Nova Scotia
Through business and community partnerships we work to build and nurture the economic and cultural health of our community. As an entertainment destination we are proud to showcase Atlantic Canadian, national, and international talent and invests over $1,000,000 in entertainment annually.  Casino Nova Scotia is a tourism driver and supporter. Each year we welcome over one million visitors, many of whom arrived from outside the province. Ensuring we have a positive impact on the quality of life in our province is important to us. With a focus on the arts, culture and entertainment we support organizations and events that help make our province a vibrant place to live.

Music Nova Scotia
Music Nova Scotia is a non-profit organization that has worked since 1989 with a mandate to encourage the creation, development, growth and promotion of Nova Scotia’s music industry. Music Nova Scotia exists to grow and nurture the Nova Scotia music industry, to retain Nova Scotia’s natural resource and promote investment, by:

  • Providing education, information and resources to members.
  • Acting as the advocate for the industry to all levels of government and private enterprise
  • Supporting membership in the promotion of the export of Nova Scotia music regionally, nationally and internationally

About the Artist in Residence Program
Casino Nova Scotia is working with Music Nova Scotia to continue to build the profile of our local music industry. The Artist in Residence program will increase the opportunities for the development of emerging artists in Nova Scotia as well as beneficial for the continued development of our music industry. Casino Nova Scotia is contributing $20,000 to this program to provide a local emerging musician or group with support and opportunities to develop their career. Music Nova Scotia is responsible for administering the fund.

Apple Terminating Music Downloads ‘Within 2 Years’

From Digital Music News:

Apple is now preparing to completely terminate music download offerings on the iTunes Store, with an aggressive, two-year termination timetable actively being considered and gaining favor.  According to sources to Digital Music News with close and active business relationships with Apple, discussions are now focused “not on if, but when” music downloads should be retired for good.

The sources insisted on confidentiality and required that all conversations be conducted outside of email or any written medium, given the realistic fear of reprisals for sharing details of internal corporate discussions.

Click here to read the full article.

NSMW Heads to Truro, Artist Showcasing Submissions Now Open

(May 12, 2016  Halifax, NS)  Molson Canadian Nova Scotia Music Week 2016 (NSMW) heads back to Truro as the festival will take place from November 3-6. With over 100 artists playing on multiple stages, NSMW is one of the largest music festivals in the region. 

The NSMW showcase stages allow Nova Scotian artists the opportunity to perform for a target audience of influential industry members, including festival buyers, booking agents, managers and media from around the world.

Each year our International Buyers Program features a spotlight on a particular region, bringing talent buyers from that region to NSMW to see what incredible talent our province has to offer. This year’s spotlight is on Poland and Eastern Europe (Russia, Turkey, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia). We will also host international guest delegates from the UK and Germany.

Also participating in NSMW 2016 is the Association of Irish and Celtic Festivals (USA). The Association of Irish and Celtic Festivals will hold their annual conference in conjunction with NSMW. Approximately twenty (20) American Irish and Celtic festival buyers will be attending. This is a great opportunity for our Celtic, Folk and Americana artists members. NSMW will host a dedicated showcase event specifically for our American guest delegates.

NSMW will also see the largest contingent of Canadian industry professionals and we will feature dedicated B2B opportunities for the domestic (national and regional) market during the conference. 

Artist Showcasing Submissions Now Open
Artist showcasing submissions to play NSMW 2016 are now open. Artists interested in performing during the festival can click here to review the showcase manual for eligibility requirements, and here to apply to showcase. Showcasing submissions will close Monday, June 6 at 5:00 p.m. (Complete the application early, and we won’t have to have an awkward conversation at 5:01pm on the deadline day.)
You must be a member of Music Nova Scotia in good standing to apply. If your membership is not up to date by 5:00 p.m. on June 6, 2016 your submission will not be considered eligible. 
The cost to submit is $30 CAD and is payable via PayPal or credit card over the phone (contact Lisa Stitt by phone 902.423.0291). You can also pay with debit/cash by visiting the Music Nova Scotia office at 2169 Gottingen Street, Halifax, NS.
For more information on NSMW and to keep up-to-date on the event, please visit

For more information contact:
Matt Kliffer  
Festival Coordinator
902.423.4153 x 109



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