Rob Laidlaw has a long time reputation in the music industry (over 25 years in fact!) ...
He started writing and playing at just 14 years old and signed his first record deal at 19 making him one of the youngest to have a record deal during that era. His band at the time - New Regime, opened for major acts like David Bowie, Level 42, Billy Idol, and Cheap Trick. A few short years later he started touring with Canadian Icons Lee Aaron, Kim Mitchell, Alannah Myles, and Honeymoon Suite.
In 2002, Rob wrote and produced RCA recording artist Blaise Pascal and had three Top-10 singles, a JUNO Songwriter of the Year nomination and many film and TV placements. Rob Laidlaw joined Platinum Blonde for their recent tour and co-produced their 2012 release "Now and Never".
Rob is always looking to develop new talent ... he's excited to join the Artists Expression For Autism initiative alongside other 80's band members, up and coming musician Barbara Lynn Doran and local talent.
As singer, songwriter and guitar player for the Canadian new wave band the Spoons, Gord Deppe has been in the music business for over thirty years. Born in Vancouver, B.C., his family moved back and forth between Canada and Germany several times before finally settling in Burlington, Ontario. There, in 1980, fresh out of high school, Gord and his band would go on to make Spoons a different kind of household word.
The young band would also catch the wave of a brand new video-driven phenomenon that was about to hit TV screens nationwide. The video for their hit Nova Heart would be aired on the very first broadcast of MuchMusic. Romantic Traffic, shot in the subways of Toronto, remains as one of the most iconic Canadian videos of all time.
Gord's recently released best-selling autobiography SpoonFed tells the story of his life, the Spoons and how the two still intertwine today. Catch Gord as he tells the stories behind the songs and ventures out on his first acoustic tour. The Spoons continue to record and perform to this day. Gord is also a songwriting teacher with SongStudio, gives motivational presentations to public school children with Kids4Kids and is on the music council for LiveLab at McMaster University.
When British Rocker Andy McLean took a vacation in Canada, he never imagined just how much his life would change. It was there, he met fellow guitarist and vocalist Gary Brown. At the time, Gary had just formed a band called The Tenants and introduced Andy to the members. Within weeks, they had begun doing the local circuit in Toronto.
Their song "Sheriff" became the first single, entering the top 40, along with an extended dance version, but it was "How Do You Sleep At Night?" that caught the attention of radio stations, and its dance version was a nightclub favourite. The album went on to sell a quarter million copies while the band toured Canada and the US for the next year and a half, even doing a handful of shows in South America.
Catch Gary live for our event Saturday March 10, 2018.
Barbara Lynn Doran is excited to be the opening act for this incredible event. Hailing from Brooklin, Ontario - Barbara is no stranger to the music industry. From a young age, she has had a special connection with music through her family. Barbara found inspiration to her songwriting through bands like the Cranberries, Holly McNarland, and Tori Amos.
Along with recording three albums, she has most notably been placed on the Nashville Songwriters Association’s 2014 “Ones To Watch” list, has been a semi-finalist in the International Songwriting Competition for two years in a row; a finalist in the Great American Songwriting Competition; and was part of the first round ballot nominees in four categories at the inaugural Country Music Association of Ontario Awards.
Barbara has also shared the stage and worked extensively with Juno-nominated songwriter Robert Laidlaw (who is also part of this years line up). She continued to push herself forward in the country music world so she could better grow as an artist. Her second album (2014's Love From All Sides), made once again in collaboration with Murray Daigle, is a full exploration of her fully developed country sound featuring no shortage of foot stomping, energetic instrumentals.
Catch Barbara live March 10, 2018 during our first annual Artists Expression For Autism Event.
Every once in a while a new artist emerges that has a unique and refreshing quality that stands out from the rest. Sofia Blu is one performer that fits into this category. This 13 year old vocalist from Blue Mountain-Collingwood, Ontario embraces a natural gift that has been evolving since an early age.
For the past few months Sofia Blu has been in the studio working on original music with various producers, writers and beat makers.
Sofia Blu’s debut single “Be Myself” was a mid-tempo Pop track with a catchy hook, distinct synth riff and a solid danceable beat produced by Grammy nominated songwriter-producer Davy Nathan (Christina Aguilera, Robin Thicke, Jason Derulo, Empire) and Derrick Wright (Adele Asst. Musical Director/Drummer).
Her newly released single entitled "Small Town Heart", a Pop ballad from the Canada Sound Project, is receiving positive from radio and the general public.
Julie LeBlanc is an actor, director, and producer. In May 2013, Julie founded the C.I.A. –Collingwood Improv Artists.
C.I.A is a collection of actors, comedians, musicians and performers who have been providing the Georgian Bay area and beyond with entertainment for many years and have formed the funniest group, EVER! C.I.A. offers workshops, comedy murder mysteries, staged drama and improv comedy shows.
Humour plays a large part in Julie’s outlook on both life and theatre as she maintains the motto “You’re not in trouble if it’s funny.” Julie is currently the host of Georgian Bay Life on RogersTV Collingwood … and loving it!
Bobby Koven (Krazy) is a high energy character with over 40 years experience in being “the life of the party” and a natural entertainer! An accomplished entrepreneur at an age of over 60 years old, I want to do what I love, which is make people laugh.
“I’m 60 and I don’t give a sh*t” ... Not true, as I do give a sh*t."By using laughter, I believe I can help shorten the journey to feeling better for those with Mental Illness and Mood Disorders. I am not a doctor, but just a fellow sufferer for over 40 years or perhaps longer (Tourette’s with the Triad OCD, ADD and Anxiety). I use humor as one of my tools to help “shorten the journey” to feeling better about oneself ...
Combine an education spanning from English Literature, New York theatre training graduate work in graphic design and music at the renowned Berklee College of Music and you land on the thoughtfully cheeky Cam Fraser.
Years of playing in popular Toronto bands including the Four Kelly's, Crispin's Glove and The And Then's just to name a few, while extensively performing at various venues throughout central Ontario. His individualistic flaire, and outlandish live antics garnered Cameron the stage name "Fun Cam".
Equally influenced by a passion for vintage equipment, classic recording techniques and clever narrative storytelling makes for a Garage Rock/Power Pop handle on vibrant orginals and unique takes on covers.
John Eaton is not new to the broadcasting industry, with over 25 years experience he's held many positions in major, middle, and smal market radio. When he's not hosting the Artists Expression For Autism Fundraiser, you can catch him in the mornings on 95.1 THE PEAK FM.