Matt Mays and El Torpedo win big at ECMAs
Matt Mays & El Torpedo dominated Monday evening’s East Coast Music Awards, taking four honours at the Charlottetown ceremony.
In addition to being named best group, the Nova Scotia rockers won best single for their song Cocaine Cowgirl while the band’s self-titled album won best rock recording and best album.
Mays thanked family and friends for “letting us do what we do,” and later added that “basically, we’d just like to thank everybody who puts up with us, wearing what we want, being ourselves. Thanks a lot!”
Joel Plaskett won two prestigious honours: male artist of the year and songwriter of the year for his song Happen Now, from his album La De Da.
“I wrote Happen Now on my father’s tenor guitar so I have to thank him for buying it,” Plaskett said, adding extra thanks to his band, the Emergency.
Celtic singer Mary Jane Lamond was also a double-winner, taking trophies for female artist of the year and roots/traditional solo recording of the year for Storas.
Up-and-coming rockers The Novaks were one of the first winners of the televised broadcast, with the Newfoundland quartet winning the Galaxie Rising Star Award and thanking Matt Mays and The Trews for “teaching us how to tour.”
Nova Scotia-born country star George Canyon won the fan-voted entertainer of the year trophy.
“These things always get me so emotional,” Canyon said. “This is such a huge honour. My hat’s off once again to my fans for allowing me to stay in this business.”
The annual celebration of the best in Atlantic Canadian music featured both established and emerging artists taking the Charlottetown Civic Centre stage.
Dapper PEI pop-rockers The Chucky Danger Band, who won the best pop recording category, kicked off the ceremony with an energetic performance of their hit, Sweet Symphony.
The music-heavy national broadcast also included performances by Matt Mays & El Torpedo, The Novaks, Canyon, folk recording winner J.P. Cormier with blues guitarist Matt Andersen and francophone singer Christian “Kit” Goguen.
The evening’s hosts √≥ Julian (John Paul Tremblay), Ricky (Robb Wells) and Bubbles (Mike Smith) of TV’s Trailer Park Boys √≥ popped up throughout the evening to introduce acts and entertain the audience, including a performance of Bubbles’s song Liquor and Whores. However, any expletives from the typically foul-mouthed trio were carefully bleeped out.
After the boys discovered that Prime Minister Stephen Harper was sitting in the front row, Bubbles led the crowd in a singalong version of the Beatles song Don’t Let Me Down, directed to Harper.
The broadcast also included a video highlight package of Halifax-born singer Sarah McLachlan, who was presented with the Director’s Special Achievement Award last June.
Cape Breton fiddle legend Buddy MacMaster won the ECMA Lifetime Achievement Award.
Fiddler Natalie MacMaster delivered a stirring performance in honour of her uncle, who then joined her for a fiddle duet onstage before receiving a standing ovation.
“It’s wonderful to receive this award. I am honoured and at the same time, I do feel humbled,” the 81-year-old MacMaster said. “I have to thank all the listeners and everybody. Thank you all very much.”
The awards ceremony, an annual celebration of music spearheaded by the East Coast Music Association, was the grand finale of a five-day event, which also featured concerts, workshops and industry meetings.
WINNERS OF THE 2006 EAST COAST MUSIC AWARDS
Album:Matt Mays & El Torpedo, Matt Mays & El Torpedo
Single:Cocaine Cowgirl, Matt Mays & El Torpedo
Group:Matt Mays & El Torpedo
Female Artist:Mary Jane Lamond
Male Artist:Joel Plaskett
Rising Star:The Novaks
Songwriter:Joel Plasket, Happen Now
Video:So She’s Leaving, The Trews
Aboriginal Recording:,Halifax Indie Rock, Jonathan Andrews
African-Canadian Recording:Gary Beals, Gary Beals
Alternative Recording:Where are they Going?, Slowcoaster
Bluegrass Recording:Just in Case, Crooked Stovepipe
Blues Recording:The Story, Matt Minglewood
Children’s Recording:Celtic & Traditional Lullabies from our Cape Breton
Classical Recording:Folklore, Denise Djokic
Country Recording:Sunday Morning, Sons of Maxwell
Francophone:Ode a l’Acadie, Ode a l’Acadie
Folk Recording:The Long River: A Personal Tribute to Gordon Lightfoot, J.P. Cormier
Gospel Recording:Always There, The Quintons
Instrumental Recording:Duane Andrews, Duane Andrews
Jazz Recording:Piano Trios, Tom Roach
Pop Recording:6-pack, The Chucky Danger Band
Rap/Hip-Hop Recording:5th Element, Classified
Rock Recording:Matt Mays & El Torpedo, Matt Mays & El Torpedo
Roots/Traditional Group Recording:The Hard and the Easy, Great Big Sea
Roots/Traditional Solo Recording:Storas, Mary Jane Lamond
Urban Single Recording:Gonna Get Down, Jamie Sparks
Matt Mays and El Torpedo win big at ECMAs