public speaking

Speaking in Sudbury: NOMFA Conference & Showcase Festival May 25-28

I’m flying out tonight to Sudbury, Ontario, to speak on two panels at the Northern Ontario Music and Film Awards from May 25-28. (I’ve never been to the big nickle!)

  1. May 26- 10:30 a.m. What’s the Deal: Contracts & Negotiations w/ Edwards Law
  2. May 27 – 10:30 a.m. Funding – with OMDC, OMF, Music Ontario, Factor and me! 

Musicians and entrepreneurs will also have the opportunity to sit down with all of the delegates, myself included, during some Speed Meetings on Friday beginning at 1:30 p.m.

I’m really looking forward to meeting with Northern Ontario musicians, delegates and re-connecting with friends over the next few days.

Plus, all Factor apps are in now, so time to celebrate!!

Speaking at Kismet Thoughts – SAT APR 8 – FREE!

This Saturday, April 8 at 215 Spadina Street in Toronto I’ll be leading a FREE talk on Grant Writing & Planning for Kismet Thoughts from 12 p.m.- 2 p.m.

It’s not a panel so I’m solo on this thing but am going to be presenting a version of what I teach my students at Trebas in a condensed, casual style.

FB RSVP linked HERE 

With grant season just around the corner, don’t let this happen to you!

10 Must See Acts at Canadian Music Week 2016

Some incredible artist clients are playing CMW this week and I’m happy to share who! Follow me on Twitter @Urockred, Instagram or Snapchat (YouRockRed) throughout the week for inside look at the conference, showcases and more shenanigans.

I’m also going to be speaking at the Mentor’s Cafe so please come by and say hello!


Friday, May 06 Adelaide Hall 9:00PM

PONY - Garage Punk Pop

Wednesday, May 04 Silver Dollar 10:00PM


Thursday, May 05 Cadillac Lounge 7:00PM

Other non-clients I’m stoked to see:

  • Eli and the Strawman
  • Fat White Family
  • Les Deuxleuxes
  • Woodes
  • Wander Years
  • We Were Lovers

Metro News Ottawa Feature Interview w/ YouRockRed

The next BSOMA session is only a week away and was so jam-packed with awesome music industry insiders Metro News Ottawa interviewed me on it! Also I managed to get the words, “kick-ass,” in print, so that’s an accomplishment. Click on photo below for full article!

Click for link to full article.

Click for link to full article.

CityFolk Wrap!

So since April I’ve been working closely with CityFolk (formerly Ottawa Folk Festival) on their free programming side of the festival called Marvest. As of Sunday night, it’s over and was a HUGE success. Hundreds of people went from venue to venue along Bank Street discovering new music (despite the frigid winds on Saturday night). I myself tried to catch as many shows as possible from the 60+ bands, stopping in by bike over a 2 km radius (I’m convinced I must have walked/biked 20 km on Saturday). Somehow I wound up MC’ing a corn on the cob eating contest in addition to being interviewed on CTV, CBC Ottawa TV, CBC Ottawa Morning, CFRA, 1310 News, Couch Assassin, CKCU, CHUO… I’m sure I’m forgetting some. Just know that Marvest was in all media related to local music and culture in Ottawa.  There was an amazing team at CityFolk helping make everything happen and they were a pleasure to work with. So too was connecting with all the venue owners, band members and general public while chatting about this amazing, SXSW-inspired festival experience never before seen in the capital.



I took a few days off but of course as soon as I arrived home, I rolled into Polaris Prize to watch the incredible Buffy Ste Marie take home the top honour. It was a blast and Fred Penner did a wonderfully charming job covering all the past Polaris winners acoustic with exception to calling Fucked Up, Fuddle-uddled-up and not even trying to cover Tanya Tagac. The afterparty was a big dance party too that led perfectly into a week of resting and catching up on sleep after quite possibly the longest work weeks I can ever recall in the industry with the biggest smile on my face.

Speaking of smiles. Here are some photos.

zoo instagram image of aberdeen etc sam on tv


and just in case you wanted to see that corn eating contest…

Speaking at Canadian Music Week

CMW 2015 is under way and my ears are already ringing (Thanks, Metz!) The 3-day music conference begins on Thursday, May 7, and you can sign up for a FREE meeting with me at the Mentor’s Cafe from 12- 1p.m.

Click here for the link! 

Ottawa Citizen Features YouRockRed & BSOMA

Click to read the full article.

Click to read the full article.

Why there’s been no updates: Speaking Engagements Galore!

I’ve been a little slow to update here as it’s been anything but at the YouRockRed office. I’ve been bouncing between Ottawa and Toronto.

I’m thrilled to confirm that the Bluesfest School of Music and Art info sessions have been continued (April is booked! May is in the works!). I hosted one 2 weeks ago on how to make money in the music industry and another a week back on how to become involved as a music educator in the Blues in the Schools program.  The latter was even profiled in the Ottawa Citizen praising the importance of the sessions influence on the local artists. One gaff, they called me a musician; now while I sing along a ton to whatever is playing on the radio or my headphones, I just work with musicians.

I’ve sat down with some really driven clients for artist consultations (1 hour sessions with me where an artist can get questions answered by an industry expert and objective guidance) in Ottawa to as far as Alberta.

I even popped in on the Tara Recording Academy to give a guest lecture last Monday night to about 30 audio engineering students. We talked about punk rock and how to self-promote to get future clients when they’re out in the production world, including the importance of grant writing. It was a cool connection too because the teacher was an artist that I’d interviewed for a now defunct publication on the street in front of a now closed venue (turned dirty nightclub).

I LOOOOOVE doing speaking engagements and hope to do more here in Toronto and wherever else will have me! Teaching is something I’ve done in the past that just excites me. Back in 2007-8 I taught history of contemporary Canadian music to ESL teen students, but being able to teach to engaged and interested musicians/industry is my bread and butter. Nowadays, it’s my strong journalism background that allows me to research and ask questions to panelists that come out to the sessions.

More news to come!

With teacher Marty at Tara from Autumn's Canon

With teacher Marty at Tara from Autumn’s Canon at the school after my talk