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Calgary rock project Cindy Lee among acts shortlisted for Polaris Music Prize

An array of familiar names will compete for this year’s Polaris Music Prize.

Montreal singer-songwriter Charlotte Cardin, Toronto rockers the Beaches and Grammy winner Allison Russell are among the 10 contenders shortlisted for the $50,000 award for best Canadian album.

They’re joined by other established homegrown artists including rapper Tobi, Inuk musician Elisapie and previous Polaris winner Jeremy Dutcher.

Click to play video: 'Man’s award-winning mission to save Indigenous language through music'

Man’s award-winning mission to save Indigenous language through music

In recent years, the Polaris short list has exposed burgeoning Canadian acts to a wider national audience, but in a rare instance, seven of this year’s contenders have already won Junos, the country’s top music award.

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Among them is DJ and producer Bambii who picked up her first Juno in Halifax earlier this year.

Rounding out the short list revealed Thursday are Toronto rapper DijahSB, Calgary drag queen rock project Cindy Lee and Montreal punk band Nobro.

The Polaris winner will be announced Sept. 17 during a gala presentation at Toronto’s Massey Hall featuring performances by most nominees, including Cardin and Dutcher. Tickets for the event are available through the Massey Hall website and at the venue’s box office.

The Beaches will be absent as a group, though lead vocalist Jordan Miller is set to perform with the Thunder Queens, a teenage all-female punk act from London, Ont.

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The Polaris short list is narrowed down from a longer list of 40 albums announced last month. The winner is then chosen by an 11-person jury leading up to the gala.

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Several of this year’s Polaris-nominated albums have already made a cultural impact.

99 Nights by Cardin features her pop radio favourite “Confetti” and won the Juno for album of the year, while the Beaches’ Blame My Ex is highlighted by the hit single “Blame Brett,” which found traction on TikTok last year before climbing the charts.

Russell’s The Returner includes “Eve Was Black,” which earned the musician her first Grammy for best American roots performance, while covers of Metallica, Cyndi Lauper and Blondie make up Elisapie’s Inuktitut, which showcases her singing classic pop and rock songs in her native language.

Click to play video: 'Inuk musician Elisapie opens up about her success, culture'

Inuk musician Elisapie opens up about her success, culture

Dutcher’s Motewolonuwok follows his Polaris-winning debut sung entirely in the Wolastoqey language.

Nigerian-born Canadian Tobi’s Panic blends hip-hop beats with social commentary and personal confessions, while non-binary rapper DijahSB’s The Flower That Knew sees them collaborate with a handful of other Toronto artists.

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Bambii is known as part of Toronto’s underground electronic music scene and her EP Infinity Club captures the energy of her club shows.

Cindy Lee’s Diamond Jubilee is a sprawling, two-hour collection of 32 songs concocted as an alter ego of musician Patrick Flegel. The concept album stirs up the spirit of lo-fi AM pop-rock music of the 1970s with a hint of psychedelia.

The name of all-female rockers Nobro’s ferocious punk party album Set Your P—y Free was inspired by a show they played hours after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned abortion rights.

Last year, the Polaris prize went to Debby Friday for her electro-rock album Good Luck, while other recent winners include Pierre Kwenders, Cadence Weapon and Haviah Mighty.

&© 2024 The Canadian Press

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