Being a singer-songwriter is a challenging gig. The hours are long and it can be hard to get exposure. Many up-and-coming artists are looking for their break to make it big in the music scene.
A TransCanada partnership with the CKUA Radio Network (CKUA) in Alberta is helping to get local artists over these barriers.
Mike Edel, a singer-songwriter from Western Canada sits outside a recording studio in downtown San Francisco to talk about the TransCanada Music West series which airs on CKUA.
“I really value CKUA,” says Edel. “Growing up in rural Alberta, I remember thinking that good music was hard to find in a small-town . . . CKUA provided, and still does, a voice for music lovers like me in rural and urban Alberta.”
CKUA is one of Canada’s longest-running radio stations and has been on the air for 87 years. Its mandate is to entertain, inform and educate listeners. The music programming is diverse, but the station places an emphasis on providing exposure to local Western Canadian artists.
TransCanada has been supporting CKUA since 2010 to help local musicians gain exposure. The series includes 52, one-hour shows, which are also aired on the web; they feature some of Western Canada’s best up and coming artists.
“With support from TransCanada, CKUA has been able to showcase the songwriting and performing talents of hundreds of Western Canada artists,” says Elliott Garnier, CKUA senior producer. “Every Friday night, we deliver stellar live concerts and sessions into the cars, kitchens and living rooms of listeners across the province and around the world.”
As part of TransCanada Music West, three free community concerts are held each year where Western Canadian artists can perform live and gain more exposure for their talents. This year, the first show was in Edmonton on April 3, with more concerts in Fort Saskatchewan on May 29 and Grand Prairie on June 12.
“Through their support, TransCanada does more than help deliver great live music to the airwaves – they also help to build the careers of hundreds of talented musicians that call Western Canada home,” Garnier adds.
“I think in any activity, whether it is business as TransCanada knows it or the music business, the most important recipe for success is collaboration,” says Edel. “It’s often when people of diverse values, goals and opinions come together on common ground to help one another that something great is made. TransCanada’s partnership with CKUA is a prime example of that and I am happy to participate in a show that is a product of collaboration.”
CKUA receives support from TransCanada to run the TransCanada Music West series, which profiles artists like me. This relationship goes beyond financial benefit — we can all agree on common ground that the value of art and music is not always quantifiable, but it is incredibly important to the culture and vitality of Alberta and Western Canada.”
Supporting local artists isn’t new to TransCanada. For more than 60 years, the company has been giving back to the communities where we operate. TransCanada’s core values — Integrity, Responsibility, Collaboration and Innovation — lay the foundation for how we work with each other and with our stakeholders.
Learn more about TransCanada’s commitment to being a good neighbour and a trusted community partner.