ECMAs tear up Moncton

Tara Bradbury
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Event wraps up with awards gala tonight

It's the most sedate day Moncton has seen all week.  

Though it's nearly 20 degrees and sunny, downtown Moncton is quieter than it's been in a while today, after a rowdy night of East Coast Music Awards showcases and unofficial "no-cases," which kept the city centre alive until 6 a.m.  

Shanneyganock, The Navigators, Andrew O'Brien and the Searchers, Ian Foster and Mark Bragg were among the Newfoundland and Labrador acts who kept the party going with showcases at the Delta hotel, while musicians like Damhnait Doyle and The Heartbroken, Sherman Downey and the Silver Lining, Lindsay Barr and Mercy the Sexton were among those who performed official gigs off-site.  

Saturday also saw a number of workshops, private one-on-one meetings between artists and music industry representatives, and panel discussions. Maestro Fresh Wes headlined the Hip-Hop Beats and Tweets panel alongside rappers Classifed, Ghettosocks and Muneshine, where he talked about the challenges he faced breaking into the music business as a hip hop artist in the 1980s. The rappers took questions from the audience and shared the obstacles involved in sampling other artists' music.  Classified won the Rap/Hip-Hop Recording of the Year award, while the award for Country Recording of the Year was presented to Gordie Sampson. Gospel Recording of the Year went to Mike Biggar while the award for Classical Recording of the Year was given to Scott MacMillan.  

New Brunswick musician Richard Gibson was presented with the Musician's Achievement Award.  

"The musical compositions of Richard Gibson include works for every instrumental and vocal genre, from arrangements for solo guitar to large-scale pieces for multiple chorus and orchestra. ECMA is proud to honour his accomplishments with this important award," said ECMA executive director Su Hutchinson.  

Most ECMA events were over by Sunday, apart from the SOCAN Songwriters Circle, featuring singer/songwriters like Chris Kirby, Rose Cousins and Jimmy Rankin, among others. The musicians took turns singing original songs and telling the story behind them.  

Today is the final day for the ECMAs, which will wrap up with the awards gala, hosted by JUNO-winning Acadian singer/songwriter Roch Voisine, at Casino New Brunswick this evening.  

Follow The Telegram's arts reporter Tara Bradbury (@tara_bradbury) on Twitter for live updates from the event.

Organizations: Delta hotel, Silver Lining

Geographic location: Moncton, Newfoundland and Labrador, Country Recording New Brunswick

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