I think this is a Canadian thing in general, but I sense that it’s particularly strong in Toronto:
You may not realize it, but there are a lot of really great Canadian musicians – like Barenaked Ladies, Cowboy Junkies, Diana Krall, Sarah McLachlan, Michael Buble, to name a few. (Notice I left out Celine Dion and Justin Bieber who are, yes, also Canadian).
And there are a ton more great musicians that I’d never heard of, that is until I started listening to CBC Radio. CBC is kind of like NPR in the States, with one major difference: CBC loves it’s music.
That’s one of the weird, but wonderful things about this seasoned NPR listener enjoying the CBC – right in the middle of one of their talk shows or even a news show, they’ll put on a song. Not just a snippet of a song, but a whole song that they introduce on both sides of it.
It’s not like music is considered important, but relegated to its own show (like on KCRW at home). No… rather, most of the shows I listen to on the CBC generally incorporate music – full songs! – into their broadcast. And, most of it is really good. They seem pretty strong on the singer/songwriter thing up here.
So, next time you’re listening to a recording of Glenn Gould sublimely playing Bach or the rich vocals of k.d. lang, remember to thank Canada and their love of music.