Polaris 2011

Get To Know Your Short List

Ron Sexsmith- Long Player Late Bloomer

The inclusion of Ron Sexsmith on the Polaris Short List is a bit of an anomaly;  he just doesn’t embody any of the typical qualities of Polaris nominees. That’s not to say that the outcomes will always be the same, but patterns form for a reason. Let’s examine:
First off, Sexsmith has been around forever. He started writing and releasing music in 1985 and has since had over 12 commercial releases. Why the sudden interest from highbrow Canadian music media? I don’t know. Secondly, he’s fairly well known and respected. His songs have been covered by Feist, Michael Buble and Rod Stewart to name a few. He’s also worked alongside Chris Martin of Coldplay, Leonard Cohen and Shonen Knife. Your parents will likely know who he is, ask them. (A bad sign? Maybe.)
Lastly, while Long Player Late Bloomer is not a bad record, it’s just not great. There’s some good songwriting in there, but there’s also some cheesy stuff. He has a good voice, but it’s kind of unexciting. Like I mentioned before, he fits nicely between Celine Dion and Dan Fogelberg in your parents’ record collection.
Polaris is known for showcasing and boosting the careers of upcoming and slightly obscure artists. Sexsmith is neither; he doesn’t need the fame and he doesn’t need the funding. Not to mention, there is just nothing on this album that departs from what we hear on Adult Contemporary radio stations every day. Allowing him to win this award would be a slap in the face to courageously creative artists like Braids, Colin Stetson and Austra.
Listen for yourself and decide if I’m heinously off the mark with this one.


About J2

What happens when you're a wordsy music aficionado who works for NXNE, CMW, HPX, Olio Music Festival, The JUNOs and Polaris Music Prize? You spend all of your free time blogging about it... Follow on Twitter if you're so inclined: @HearPlugged

Posted on September 15, 2011, in Sound Bites and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: