The biggest JUNO Awards in recent memory went down over "The Weeknd," celebrating the hottest Canadian talent in decades. Let us reacquaint you with Alessia Cara, Justin Bieber and of course...
The Weeknd dominated the 2016 Juno Awards as the televised portion of the ceremonies took over Calgary's Saddledome on Sunday night. The Toronto native, born Abel Tesfaye, bagged a total of five Junos, including Album of the Year for Beauty Behind the Madness and Single of the Year for "Can't Feel My Face." This comes after a huge sweep for the Canadian singer, winning five trophies at the Grammy's earlier this year and proving a sizeable presence at the American Music and BET Awards. The year reached a high point of course when The Weeknd called Prime Minister Justin Trudeau "unbelievable" after their meeting at a Canadian-themed gala in Washington D.C. last month. And ever the crowd pleaser, Tesfaye thanked the Junos with an evocative rendition of "Acquainted" from Beauty Behind the Madness and the standalone single "Might Not."
The Weeknd was the big winner on Sunday, but the Junos were no less important for new Canadian artists breaking onto the international scene. Brampton, Ontario's Alessia Cara inaugurated the night's festivities with her contagiously soulful voice that belies her 19 years, amping the crowd to her breakout "Here" and "Wild Things" from her debut album Know-it-all. It was fitting, therefore, that of the four categories for which she was nominated, Cara took home Breakthrough Artist of the Year, beating out fellow artists Coleman Hell, Francesco Yates, Scott Helman and Tobias Jesso Jr, all of whom have been having a huge year. Indeed, at melty we were fortunate enough to sit down with Alessia Cara to talk about Drake and what it means to be a Canadian artist today.
But it wasn't all about the new talent blowing up the international scene. Some of Canada's great musical embassadors were on hand to show the depth of musical genius our country has always conceived. Burton Cummings was officially inducted into The Canadian Music Hall of Fame both for his decades' long solo career and his pioneering work as frontman of The Guess Who (inducted in 1987) who rocked the late sixties with a string of hits including "American Woman" and "These Eyes." Legendary Saskatchewan folk and roots singer Buffy Sainte-Marie was present, vying for Artist of the Year taken by The Weeknd, but nabbing the second award of the evening for Best Contemporary Roots Album of the Year for Power in the Blood. And of course, the ubiquitous Justin Bieber also took home a trophy in Best Pop Album for his recent release, Purpose, as well as the hard fought Fan Choice Award, for which he drew over six million votes. He wasn't personally present to accept either, however. What was your favourite moment at the Junos?