Banned & Outlawed Start 2023 by Releasing Three New Singles!

Manitoba duo of brothers, Banned & Outlawed (Jon and Daniel Hnatishin), have been keeping busy writing and releasing new music to start off the new year.

2022 was a big year for the duo with many shows and performances throughout Canada, which they look forward to continuing in 2023.

Banned & Outlawed released three new singles earlier this month, “A Song You Can Drink A Beer To,” “Dirt On You,” and “Good Ole’ Boy.”

“It is a long time coming and we are happy to be able to release them,” they said.

They are currently working on music videos for these songs including, “A Song You Can Drink A Beer To,” which is out now!

When writing songs they try to stay true to what they are writing, which helps them put emotion into the songs when performing.

They recorded these songs throughout the pandemic and have more recordings they are going to release this year as well.

Although they didn’t have a huge part in the writing process of these songs, they wanted to make sure they changed some elements to make them their own.

When choosing songs to record, they always go back to their influences, Jason Aldean and Eric Church and listen to the stories and meaning of the songs and see if it is something they can relate to.

Check out the duo’s three new singles and the music video for “A Song You Can Drink A Beer To.”

Getting to Know: Tyler Joe Miller

Tyler Joe Miller is a Canadian country music artist from Langley, BC, who quickly rose to fame with number one hit singles on country radio.

Miller grew up listening to country music and it was always his favourite genre.

He owns a non-profit that works on building projects in Central America. On one of his trips he enjoyed pulling out his guitar and playing music. Miller had a memorable conversation with a contractor on the trip who encouraged him to pursue music professionally as a way of helping people.

Miller’s main goal is to help people. “People is my passion,” he said. He realized he could get into country music and use his voice to impact and help people.

“I think country music has a heartbeat for relating and helping people and caring for others.”

After a couple years of getting started in the music industry, his label, MDM Recordings saw a video of him singing on Facebook and signed him.

His first two singles, “Pillow Talkin” and “I Would Be Over Me Too” both hit number one on Canadian Country Music Radio.

He was told not to expect his songs in the top 50 as a brand new artist starting from scratch and the songs exceeded all expectations.

“There is a lot of pressure starting off my career with two number one’s but I just want to put out music that I love and not think about the numbers and charts,” he said.

His first few singles were released right before the COVID-19 pandemic, which shut down all events and live music for a long period of time. Before ever playing a live show, Tyler Joe Miller had four songs on country radio.

“When I started playing shows people weren’t just watching me they were able to sing along, which is the coolest thing,” he said.

Miller opened up for Jess Moskaluke on the Mapdot Tour in the fall of 2022, which was his first real tour experience.

“We had a blast and being able to be in front of the fans is the best part. It was an unbelievable first tour experience.”

A memorable experience for him on tour was his home show in Vancouver. The day of the show Jess Moskaluke wasn’t able to perform so he ended up playing a full
90-minute set with his own band who were coming to watch the show.

“I am just so grateful for my band for being there and it was phenomenal and definitely the most memorable for me.”

Tyler Joe Miller currently has his most recent single, “Never Met a Beer” on radio with his friend Matt Lang but plans to get new music out shortly in the new year.

“We just want to get content out so people can hear more music and I think 2023 is going to be a good year for that.”

Madeline Merlo Releases New EP: Slide

Madeline Merlo, raised in Maple Ridge, British Columbia, grew up in a very musical family. She was always drawn to the storytelling aspect of country music and songwriting. Madeline knew from a young age she was meant to be in the country music industry and signed her first record deal in Canada when she was 18 years old.

Madeline Merlo was honoured with the Canadian Country Music Association’s Rising Star Award in 2015.

In 2020, Madeline won the season two premiere episode of the NBC songwriting reality series, Songland with her song “Champagne Night.” The song was recorded by Lady A and was a three-week number one hit.

“When I got the opportunity I was excited to sing on tv and did not expect to win and for Lady A to put it out and support the song the way they did,” she said.

“Champagne Night” opened a lot of doors for Madeline and brought her into the Nashville songwriting scene.

“It was a gift that kept on giving. I am so grateful for that song,” said Merlo.

In the fall of 2022, Madeline released her four-track EP, Slide.

After Songland Madeline signed with her current record label, BBR Music Group, who encouraged her to write music and records. After working with her producer, Zach Crowell they started putting the EP, Slide together.

“It was really through meeting Zach that we were able to get the songs and EP in the right direction,” she said.

Picking a favourite song on the EP is hard for Madeline. “Slide” was the catalyst and the key to figuring the EP out and holds a special place in her heart but “Youngish” is her fiancé’s favourite song, which makes it very special to her as well.

“Girl Where He Grew Up” is a song where the the lyrics and storyline just poured out of herself and cowriter, Nathan Chapman.

“Girl Where He Grew Up” is a break up song from a perspective we don’t see much of in music.

“I have been in the exact position described in the song and new exactly what to say in that and it resonated with so many people,” she said.

Madeline plans on releasing new music in the new year that she described as some of her favourites yet!

Make sure to listen to Slide the EP and the rest of Madeline Merlo’s incredible discography of music!

Alli Walker shares newest single “Same Stars”

Alli Walker, is a Canadian country music singer/songwriter from Prince Edward Island. She was named Front Porch Music’s Artist to Watch 2022, and nominated for Rising Star at the 2022 CMAOntario Awards (Country Music Association of Ontario Awards), is a Prince Edward Island raised country music singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who moved to Toronto when she was 19 to ‘chase the dream’.

Since a very young age Alli remembers always loving country music and strutting around in her little cowboy boots she bought herself at a young age.

“I think country music got ingrained in me,” she said. Her babysitter growing up always had country music on, which helped her discover artists like Brooks & Dunn, Alan Jackson, and Taylor Swift.

“I really started singing because of Taylor and chose it for a career because of how inspired i was by her.”

In the fall of 2022, Alli released her single, “Same Stars.”

“Same Stars” is a song about being a part from your loved ones and family. At 19 years old, Alli moved away from her family in PEI to Toronto to chase her dream and have more opportunities in country music.

“Same Stars” is a reminder that although the world is so large it is also small at the same time and you can find comfort knowing that when you look up at the sky you see the same stars as your loved ones.

“It has been cool seeing the fans resonate with this song because there is a universal feeling of missing someone that people are getting with this song,” said Walker.

Same Stars is different for Walker in a sense that unlike all of her other songs, she didn’t write this one. It was pitched to her twice by her producers and at first she was hesitant about recording a song she didn’t write but this song really resonated with her and told a story she wanted to tell.

“One of my favourite song writers, Ingrid Andress wrote the song and I just really love it,” she said.

Same Stars Official Music Video

Alli Walker’s sophomore album is coming in the early new year, which will include her hit singles, “Same Stars, Red Wine or Whiskey, and Country Music.”

“This album has been a three or four year process. You think an album is going to be one way and then you keep writing and it constantly changes,” she said.

The songs she thought would be on the album constantly changed throughout those years because she kept writing more and developing a clearer idea of what she wanted the album to say.

When Alli thought her album was complete she posted a video of her single “Red Wine or Whiskey” on TikTok and fans absolutely loved it so she knew it had to be added on the album. “Red Wine or Whiskey,” a song that was never going to be on the album is now is her most successful song on the album so far!

Make sure to check out “Same Stars” and more of Alli’s hit singles!

Jess Moskaluke headlines her first tour: Mapdot Tour!

Jess Moskaluke is on her first headlining tour for the Mapdot Tour hitting many stops throughout Canada.

Her newest single “Knock Off” was written by herself, and producer, Corey Crowder who has done most of her discography to date. She also brought in her friend, Jade Eagleson to help write this song because she wanted to try a different sound and Eagleson is great at the 90’s Honky Tonk sound.

“It was such a fun day and was the first time the three of us wrote together but definitely won’t be the last,” said Moskaluke.

As a songwriter, Jess believes songwriting is a skill and is something she worked really hard at. When she writes she usually will come up with titles, or concepts ahead of time and will jot down ideas in her phone and take them to Nashville with her to write.

“Everybody’s songwriting process is different but that is mine and how my brain works,” she said.

The music video for “Knock Off” started with choosing the director, Travis Nezbit, who does goofy and beautiful, rock visuals very well. The goal was to do something more unique for the video and not follow the exact lyrics. In doing so, they came up with the concept of the look alike contest.

As her first headlining tour, Jess is excited to be on the road for the Mapdot Tour with Tyler Joe Miller, David James, and Kip Moore.

“It is super exciting, and has been a long time coming and I am glad it is finally here.”

The tour is all encompassing for Jess. She is putting all of her time into it with planning the lighting, writing, recording the music, and promoting the shows.

“Everything I have is going into this tour,” she said.

Make sure to check the tour dates and catch the last few stops on the tour!

Manitoba Country Music Awards – 2022

On Saturday, November 5, fans, artists, and supporters of country music gathered at The Metropolitan Entertainment Centre to celebrate Manitoba country music at the 2022 Manitoba Country Music Awards.

The sold out show, put on by the Manitoba Country Music Association was the largest to date. After a virtual show last year, it was very special to have a full room of people celebrating the talent and hard work of the people in the Manitoba country music industry.

Many performers took the stage to play their biggest songs including Petric, Kendra Kay, Quinton Blair, Desiree Dorion and Dave Wasyliw, Nelson Little, Jade Turner, and many more!

The show was hosted by Jason McCoy, member of The Road Hammers, who also shared a special performance with the crowd.

Below is a breakdown of MCMA Award nominees and winners:

FEMALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR
Brandi Vezina
Desiree Dorion
Emma Peterson
Jade Turner
Kendra Kay – WINNER
Leanne Pearson

MALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR
Jason Kirkness
Jerry Sereda
JR Charron
Nelson Little
Quinton Blair – WINNER
Ryan Keown

GROUP OR DUO OF THE YEAR
Banned & Outlawed
Doc Walker
Foster Martin Band
Past the Perimeter
Petric – Winner
Two Crows For Comfort

NCI FM INDIGENOUS COUNTRY MUSIC AWARD
Brandi Vezina
Desiree Dorion
Jade Turner
Jerry Sereda
Mitchell Makoons
Nelson Little – Winner

FAY WALKER SONG OF THE YEAR (SONGWRITERS)
20 Dollar Bottle – Quinton Blair, Writers: Jason Blaine, Quinton Blair – WINNER
City Girl – Daniel Desorcy, Writers: Jason Blaine, Jason Petric
Flirtin’ – Petric and Hayley Jensen, Writers: Emily Doty, James Show, Jason Petric, Jordan Day, Tom Petric
High Road – Nelson Little, Writers: David Wasyliw, Nelson Little, Stephen Arundell
Saddle – Amanda Cannon, Writers: Amanda Cannon, Derek Benjamin
Still My Father’s Son – Mitchell Mozdzen

ROOTS ARTIST, DUO OR GROUP OF THE YEAR
Jaryn Friesen
JR Charron
Nelson Little
Mitchell Makoons
Quinton Blair – WINNER
Two Crows For Comfort

EMERGING ARTIST AWARD
Amanda Cannon
Banned & Outlawed
Brandi Vezina
Jaryn Friesen
JR Charron
Nelson Little -WINNER

ALL STAR BAND OF THE YEAR – GUITAR
Brad Moggie
Lachlan McLean
Rylan Knaggs
Sean Borton – WINNER
Stephen Arundell
Troy Flamand

ALL STAR BAND OF THE YEAR – BASS
Ben Mak-Wiebe – WINNER
Evan Taplin
Jon Mushaluk
Josh Gareau
Mucha Bee
Ray Grenier

ALL STAR BAND OF THE YEAR – DRUMS
Cam Cordoviz
Daniel Hnatishin
Jon Plett – WINNER
Josh Ayers
Mark Kohan
Stephen Broadhurst

ALL STAR BAND OF THE YEAR – SPECIALTY (BANJO, FIDDLE, MANDOLIN, KEYS, STEEL)
Blaine Badiuk – WINNER
Brad Moggie
Brenton Thorvaldson
Chris Nakonechny
Michael Audette
Rory Verbugge

MUSIC VIDEO OF THE YEAR
Anywhere the Night Goes – Jason Kirkness
City Girl – Daniel Desorcy
Homegrown Heart – Kendra Kay
Little Man – Leanne Pearson
Safe With Me – Petric
Wouldn’t That Be Fun – Desiree Dorion feat. Dave Wasyliw – WINNER

SINGLE OF THE YEAR
20 Dollar Bottle – Quinton Blair
Anywhere The Night Goes – Jason Kirkness
Don’t Get Much Better Than This – Banned & Outlawed
Flirtin’ – Petric – WINNER
Just For The Record – Emma Peterson
Say It Again – Kendra Kay

INTERACTIVE ARTIST, DUO OR GROUP OF THE YEAR
Banned & Outlawed
Chris Micheal
Desiree Dorion
Emma Peterson – WINNER
Jade Turner
Petric

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Don’t Settle – Brandi Vezina
Just For The Record – Emma Peterson WINNER
Jade Turner – Jade Turner

FANS’ CHOICE
Brandi Vezina
Emma Peterson
JR Charron – WINNER
Kendra Kay
Nelson Little
Petric

COVER/TRIBUTE ARTIST, DUO OR GROUP OF THE YEAR
Catie St. Germain
Mike Sacharko Band -WINNER
Midnight Renegade
Sean Taylor Band
Titans of Country Tribute Show
Tulsa Time Don Williams Tribute

RADIO STATION OF THE YEAR
730 CKDM AM (Dauphin)
CFRY 920 AM (Portage la Prairie)
Country 107.7 FM (Steinbach)
NCI FM 105.1 (Manitoba)
Now Country 104.7 FM (Winnipeg) – WINNER
QX104 FM (Winnipeg)

RADIO ON-AIR PERSONALITY OR TEAM OF THE YEAR
Al Gaines 730 CKDM
Alex Devries 730 CKDM
Brian Cook Now Country 104.7
Brody Jackson QX 104 – WINNER
Dave Anthony Country 107.7
Morgan James (MJ) Now Country 104.7

DAUPHIN’S COUNTRYFEST FESTIVAL OR EVENT OF THE YEAR
Hanover Ag Fair
Morden Corn and Apple Festival – WINNER
Niverville Olde Tyme Country Fair
Summer In The City
Summer Winds Family Music Festival
Winkler Harvest Festival

VENUE OF THE YEAR
Cowboys Roadhouse
The Park Theatre
The Royal George – WINNER
Times Change(d) High & Lonesome
Trans Canada Brewing Co.
Watson Art Centre

Hall of fame inductees

The Young Brothers were inducted into the Manitoba Country Music Hall of Fame during the show.

Congratulations to all of the nominees, performers, and winners of the 2022 Manitoba Country Music Awards!

Getting to Know: Jerry Sereda

Jerry Sereda, country music singer/songwriter grew up in Selkirk, Manitoba and was always surrounded by music from family and friends.

Growing up near Dauphin, Manitoba he remembers attending Dauphin’s
Countryfest — a summer country music festival. One particular year he was watching Dierks Bentley perform on stage and was completely mesmerized by the show. In that moment he realized that music and performing was what he was supposed to do.

Jerry started off his music career participating in talent competitions performing with his acoustic guitar. After many competitions he felt it was time to take a break from them until his mom found a contest that was being put on by an Indigenous organization. Jerry is Métis and has always been proud of his Indigenous heritage and decided to give it a try.

Jerry placed in the top 12 of the competition. The competition took the top 12 contestants and paid for each artist to go in a studio with a producer and record an original song. They got to perform on a stage with a live band , live audience on National Indigenous People’s Day.

“I was blessed enough to place in the overall top 3 of this contest, said Sereda. It opened up my eyes into the work that goes into everything in the industry and I was hooked in the industry and have enjoyed the process the entire time.”

Jerry is nominated for two Manitoba Country Music Award nominations this year in the Male Artist of the Year and NCI FM Indigenous Country Artist of the Year categories.

“I’m honoured and shocked at the same time to be nominated because everybody in these categories with me are not only friends of mine but I own their albums and listen to their music,” he said.

This summer Jerry released his latest single, “Backroad Therapy,” which discusses the idea of how driving around, listening to music with friends and family is therapy with the main theme of music being a form of therapy.

As Jerry comes out of a super busy summer with shows and recordings he is on tour with Petric and Jason Kirkness.

“They are like my brothers and it’s going to be a blast.”

The Turn The Night Up Tour kicked off in Virden, Manitoba last night and continues on Thursday, October 27 in Brandon, Manitoba.

Jerry Sereda is currently working on his new album, which is ready to go very soon, writing music, and performing live shows.

Make sure to listen to “Backroad Therapy” and catch Jerry Sereda on the Turn The Night Up tour with Jason Kirkness and Petric!

Five Roses Releases New EP: Jukebox Vibrations

The Canadian country music duo Five Roses, consisting of Jade Godin and Zack Ouimet are celebrating the release of their EP, Jukebox Vibrations.

Godwin and Ouimet both grew up surrounded by music. Growing up, each of their families would constantly play music around the house, which made Godwin and Ouimet fall in love with music at a young age. After meeting at the barbershop Godin worked at, Five Roses was formed.

Their newest EP, Jukebox Vibrations was released August 26, 2022 and consists of nine songs, including a French version of the songs “Feel Good” and “To The Moon And Back.”

“We are so excited to put out the EP because we have been working on it for two years,” said Godin.

Now, more than ever it is important to give people content and more music,” said Ouimet.

The EP title, Jukebox Vibrations is a lyric in their song “Feel Good.” They liked the way it sounded and chose it as the title of the EP.

Although it is difficult to choose, their latest single “To the Moon and Back” is Ouimet’s favourite track off Jukebox Vibrations. When he first heard the demo recorded by Shay Mooney from Dan and Shay he knew they had to record it.

To The Moon and Back

For Godin, “Feel Good” is at the top of her list. “It always puts me in a good mood. It just makes me feel so good and I hope it makes people feel the same way.”

Feel Good

The duo describes singing the new songs to a crowd for the first time as a fun but scary experience.

“It is interesting to see people’s first reactions – if they are smiling, clapping along, or if they into the song,” said Ouimet.

Their goal is to share their music and perform for as many people as they can.

The duo is constantly working on new music and are prepping for an upcoming tour in the new year.

Make sure to stream Jukebox Vibrations on all platforms and head to their website to look at tour dates and tickets.

Getting to Know: Brady Kenneth

Brady Kenneth is a local Manitoba country music singer-songwriter and Manitoba Country Music Awards nominee.

Brady Kenneth started his music career in a heavy metal band and switched genres to country about eight years ago. He always played acoustic guitar and wrote songs, but didn’t grow up on country music. Once he discovered country sounds like Eric Church, he decided to change his sound to country.

He has a broad spectrum of musical influences that go back to is metal days but for country, Eric Church is definitely a major influence.

His favourite thing about being a country artist is learning about songwriting and the country music industry. Kenneth is very interested in the behind-the-scenes of the industry that not everyone sees.

In July of 2022, he released his newest single, “That One.”

“That One,” is a song that was written out of a publishing company in Nashville. Brady worked with producer, Jeff Dalziel, CCMA 2x Producer of the Year. Together, they went through hundreds of songs and found “That One” and made it his sound.

“The song is current and really well written and I can relate to it,” he said.

It’s a song about a situation where you are starting a relationship and keeping it to yourself for a bit, but when you make it public you always have those people who doubt it.

The top three goals of his are to “make music, create music, and put out music that ultimately has some success. It is very tough to break out in the Industry with many different things that go into it – right song, place, time, season, and I would love to find that and break through more,” he explained.

Brady is looking into some upcoming show opportunities, so keep an eye out for those and make sure to listen to his newest single, “That One!”

Getting to Know: Manny Blu

Manny Blu is a Canadian country music artist from Quebec. He grew up an athlete playing hockey, soccer, football, and MMA. During his first MMA fight he got injured after winning and tore his quad. During his needed time of rest and healing, he fell in love with playing guitar and performing.

After the realization playing guitar and performing hurts a lot less than getting hit in the face with MMA, he made the transition into music.

Manny is a country/punk artist and feels it is less of a genre but more of an attitude and feeling.

“I love the storytelling and songwriting of county music but I am also a big fan of Rock and Roll. I haven’t heard too many people take the storytelling of country music and put it to more up-tempo music,” he said.

A song of his that means a lot to him is “95.” The song came to him during the pandemic when he reconnected with his now fiancé. When he listened to the lyrics of “95” he felt it was so accurate for a song he didn’t write.

Manny Blu “95”

This past spring, Manny was on the Some Things Never Change Tour with JoJo Mason, Shawn Austin, Meghan Patrick, Kelly Prescott, James Barker Band, and Dallas Smith.

“It was really fun to play with all of tour mates and have them all around,” he said.

Before the tour he was able to start playing some shows in Nashville during the pandemic, but the tour brought up the opportunity to perform in arenas.

Meeting Manny Blu on Tour in Calgary, AB.

Manny’s newest single, “Put Your Whiskey Where Your Mouth Is,” which is a fun summer and drinking song.

Listen to “Put Your Whiskey Where Your Mouth Is” below!

Put Your Whiskey Where Your Mouth is by Manny Blu.