Meaghan Smith was coming off her 2011 Juno Award win for Best New Artist. It was for her critically acclaimed album The Cricket’s Orchestra, which had been lauded for its honest, insightful songwriting and vintage sound. Despite all this, Meaghan wanted to take a chance. She knew that she wanted to make an entirely different album; a pop record with big choruses and ambitious production – it was the best way for her to connect with more people than she ever had in the past. This meant moving outside of her comfort zone and working with new collaborators on songwriting and production. This was not going to be easy. Meaghan’s recent attempts at working with co-writers hadn’t been productive, so she wasn’t optimistic that someone else would be able to help her capture what was in her soul and turn it into big, lush pop songs.
Ironically, given their obsession with America's favorite pastime, the Outfield got their start in London's East End. Playing under the name the Baseball Boys, the trio of bassist/singer Tony Lewis, guitarist/keyboardist John Spinks, and drummer Alan Jackman played around London and recorded some early demos, attracting the attention of Columbia/CBS Records. They were signed shortly thereafter and began working on their debut album, Play Deep, which was released in 1985. The album was a smash success, going triple platinum, reaching number nine on the album charts, and producing their biggest song, "Your Love," which was a Top Ten hit. To support the album, they launched an international tour opening for Journey and Starship. They began recording their second album in 1986 and in 1987 issued Bangin'.
The Lucky Nine is an English rock supergroup-of-sorts, featuring members of some other top British rock bands, including “A”, Hundred Reasons, Sunna and (the now defunct) Cable. Their collaboration resulted in an EP, and one full-length record, True Crown Foundation Songs: Hymns Of History And Hidden Ritual, both released in 2005.
The band’s inception can be traced back to early 2001 when “A” were writing ‘Hi-Fi Serious’ and Hundred Reasons were writing ‘Ideas Above Our Station’. “A” had a small studio in London where both bands were writing. When Dan wasn’t working on the “A” album and the studio was free, he would be in the studio demoing The Lucky Nine songs. At this point he didn’t know what was going to happen with the songs and considered singing on them himself.
Biography by Johnny Loftus
Sum 41 hit worldwide radar in 1996 after tiny Ajax, Ontario, proved unable to fully contain the foursome's blathering mixture of punk-pop riffing, hip-hop poses, and toilet-bowl humor. Led by guitarist/vocalist Deryck Whibley, who looked like a mash-up of the Prodigy's Keith Flint and cartoon land's Calvin, the band also included guitarist/vocalist Dave Baksh, bassist Cone McCaslin, and drummer Steve Jocz. Wooed by the boys' goofy antics and incendiary live show (and excited about the prospect of promoting their very own blink-182), Island put Sum 41 on the payroll in 1999. The Half Hour of Power EP followed, and Warped Tour dates got the word out. They returned in 2000 with the fun-filled full-length All Killer No Filler, and the singles "In Too Deep" and "Fat Lip" became staples of both modern rock radio and Total Request Live.
Sound Bluntz It's no mean feat to score a Juno award for your very first song, much less take home a second "Canadian Grammy" the following year for your sophomore single. But The Sound Bluntz' rapid-fire success only whet the duo's appetite for an even bigger challenge--bringing dance music back to old heights with their first full-length Blame The Bling. Swet and Lil' Pete have been staples of Toronto's competitive nightlife scene for well over a decade, whether spinning in the city's biggest clubs or producing and remixing a solid set of booty-shakers. Cory actually started out as a battle DJ in the mid-80s--an interesting choice for the young teen considering his mother is related to legendary Canadian pianist Glenn Gould, his great-uncle worked with Dizzy Gillespie, another uncle played saxophone alongside Edwin Starr (on "War," no less) and Cory learned to drum by jamming with yet another uncle's funk band in his grandma's basement.