Most memorable Juno moments

The 41st Annual Juno Awards were held Sunday night in Ottawa, honouring the best Canadian music released in the past year. Strong performances, a worthy induction, and a bumbling host made for some moments that are sure to be remembered for years to come.

Here are some highlights from the ceremony:

Shatner brings his special brand of comedy

When people first heard William Shatner would be hosting this year’s ceremony, it is likely they had one of two thoughts – this could go terribly wrong, or, this could be hilarious. Though his jokes suffered at the hand of poor writers who seemed to forget why we love Shatner, he still managed to get some laughs. His attempts to stalk Feist and join Nickelback and Hedley fell flat, but his rendition of classic Canadian songs like Bryan Adams “Summer of 69” and Rush’s “Tom Sawyer” were closer to his comfort zone. If you didn’t already know, the man does tour as a cover artist.

Dan Mangan’s acceptance speech

Vancouver singer-songwriter Dan Mangan had the acceptance speech of the night with his New Artist of the Year win, taking head on the criticism this category and its winners receive when they are already on their second or third album. When he said, “It doesn’t matter what you’re doing, it takes time to do anything that’s worth while,” and noted persistence, gratitude and optimism as the key to success, there was no doubt he deserved the honour.

Award ceremonies have an odd tradition of recognizing “new” artists when they are no longer really new, but that doesn’t make the winners any less worthy. It takes time to build recognition on a national level, and it is important that genuine artists like Dan Mangan – who is not on the largest label in the country- win this award, rather than a lesser artist on a larger label with the big money available to market a first release.

Feist wins Artist of the Year

Looking stunning in a perfectly fitted red belted dress, Feist humbly received the award for Artist of the Year, appearing to be in great shock and disbelief. The songstress reached international success with her last album The Reminder, so seeing her still so grounded and honoured to win the award was a big highlight of the night. Her performance of “The Bad In Each Other” from her Adult Alternative album winner Metals was also one of the best performances of the night.

An album of Christmas covers wins Album of the Year

A big surprise came when Michael Buble’s Christmas covers album won what is easily seen as the most important category of these awards – Album of the Year. Nominations in this category go by record sales, so the lack of anything truly special being nominated was no surprise, but the music industry around Canada shared a collective sigh at the fact that original music didn’t even take home the award.

Bieber, Sheepdogs and Buble accept awards via pre-recorded video

Another notable moment was the lack of winners in attendance at this year’s ceremony. Three big winners – Justin Beiber for Juno Fan Choice Award, The Sheepdogs for Single of the Year, and Michael Buble for Album of the Year – sent in quick pre-recorded videos accepting their awards. There is something to be said when half the winners of these awards don’t even care enough to show up at the ceremony. Of course, touring and other duties do get in the way, but it is nice to see Canadian artists take the time to come home when they are being celebrated in the country that originated their success.

Blue Rodeo inducted into the Hall of Fame

The best moment of the night came when Blue Rodeo received their induction to the Canadian Music Hall of Fame, a long awaited and much deserved honour. When Greg Keelor modestly accepted the award saying  “while we might not be at the head table, we’re just happy to be invited to the party,” he showed what true class is.

Watch Blue Rodeo’s performance of “Lost Together” with Sarah McLachlin

Here is the full list of winners:

  • Artist of the year: Feist
  • Album of the year: Michael Bublé, Christmas
  • Fan Choice: Justin Bieber
  • New artist: Dan Mangan
  • Single: Sheepdogs, I Don’t Know
  • Dance recording: Martin Solveig & Dragonette, Hello
  • Songwriter: Dallas Green, City and Colour, Fragile Bird, Weightless, We Found Each Other
  • Group: Arkells
  • New Group: Sheepdogs
  • Rock Album: Sheepdogs, Learn & Burn
  • Pop Album: Hedley, Storms
  • Alternative Album: Dan Mangan, Oh Fortune
  • Adult Alternative Album: Feist, Metals
  • International Album: Adele, 21
  • Rap Recording: Drake, Take Care
  • R&B/Soul Recording: Melanie Fiona, Gone and Never Coming Back
  • Video: The Sadies, Rumbleseat(directed by Mike Roberts)
  • Music DVD: Feist, Look at What the Light Did Now (produced by Anthony Seck, Jannie McInnes, Chip Sutherland)
  • Electronic Album: Tim Hecker,Ravedeath, 1972
  • Metal/Hard Music Album: KEN mode, Venerable
  • Country Album: Terri Clark,Roots & Wings
  • Roots & Traditional Album (solo): Bruce Cockburn, Small Source of Comfort
  • Roots & Traditional Album (group): Wailin’ Jennys, Bright Morning Stars
  • Francophone Album: Malajube, La caverne
  • Blues Album: MonkeyJunk, To Behold
  • Contemporary Jazz Album: Phil Dwyer Orchestra ft. Mark Fewer,Changing Seasons
  • Traditional Jazz Album: David Braid, Verge
  • Instrumental Album: Stretch Orchestra, Stretch Orchestra
  • Children’s Album: Charlie Hope, Songs, Stories and Friends: Let’s Go Play!
  • Classical Album (solo or chamber ensemble): Marc-André Hamelin, Lizst Piano Sonata
  • Classical Album (large ensemble or soloist(s) with large ensemble accompaniment): Alexandre Da Costa/Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Daugherty: Fire and Blood
  • Classical Album (vocal or choral performance): Jane Archibald/Orchestre Symphonique Bienne/Thomas Rosner, Haydn Arias
  • Classical Composition: Derek Charke, Sepia Fragments
  • Reggae Recording: Exco Levi, Bleaching Shop
  • Aboriginal Album: Murray Porter, Songs Lived & Life Played
  • Contemporary Christian/Gospel Album: Downhere, On the Altar of Love
  • World Music Album: Kiran Ahluwalia, Aam Zameen: Common Ground
  • Producer: Brian Howes, Heaven’s Gonna Wait (Hedley) and Trying Not to Love You (Nickelback)
  • Recording Engineer: George Seara, A Little Bit of Love (Michael Kaeshammer) and Let Go (Laila Biali)
  • Recording Package: Jeff Harrison, Kim Ridgewell for Rest of the Story (Chris Tarry)

Sources: Junos, Globe and Mail, CBC