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Stevie Wonder manager Keith Harris joins Canadian industry players
at
SOCAN Urban Music Panel - part of the View Points series
Thursday October 6, 2005 at Harbourfront Centre - Free admission!

TORONTO, September 29, 2005-As part of the View Points series, SOCAN (in association with MMF Canada) presents the provocative and practical panel discussion Bringing Urban Music to Market on Thursday October 6 at 7 p.m. Internationally acclaimed artist manager Keith Harris (Stevie Wonder, Omar, Jaguar) is now scheduled to join an already high powered panel which includes Canadian Urban music players like Farley Flex and Kardinal Offishall!

This free admission forum and panel discussion will cover important current issues around the growth and development of a Canadian Urban music marketplace, as well as how music industry professionals and artists should encourage the development of Canadian Urban music on various commercial radio formats across the country.

This panel now includes influential artist manager Keith Harris. Beginning in 1974, the UK based Harris has helped shape Urban music into an International concern. Beginning with his own independent label Transatlantic records (which distributed Blue Note and Milestone Jazz labels) he then worked for EMI and Motown before moving to Los Angeles in 1978 to work directly with Stevie Wonder. Harris continues to work with Wonder in addition to representing innovative Urban artists like Omar and Jaguar. For a complete Keith Harris biography visit http://www.musictank.co.uk/keith_harris.htm

Audiences will also be treated to a rare look, listen and in-person meeting with some of Canada's most prominent Urban music players! A post-panel Q&A session allows the audience to engage panelists as a group while a more informal Meet & Greet session afterwards features the music of DJ Starting from Scratch (Flow 93.5 FM). Panelists include: Divine Brown (R&B vocalist, Blacksmith/Universal); David "Click" Cox (A&R rep, Universal Music Canada); Justin Dumont (Music Director, Flow 93.5 FM); Rob Farina (Program Director, CHUM FM); Farley Flex (Canadian Idol judge, Plasma Corporate);  Kardinal Offishall (rap artist, BlackJays/Virgin/EMI). Panel moderator is Dan Kershaw (SOCAN Relationship Manager).
MMF founder and artist manager Michael McMartin (Hoodoo Gurus) will also be in attendance at this event.

Urban music accounts for a healthy percentage of overall cross-format radio play in Canada. However, an unusually large number of those spins come from American, not Canadian acts. Why is this a trend and how can we educate music business professionals and musicians at all levels, on how to break their music locally (so that Canadian acts can he heard in Canada, not just as Urban imports) and nationally? How do artists like panelist Divine Brown, whose new self-titled debut is well on its way to selling Gold (50, 000 copies) in Canada, access commercial radio across different formats across the country.

View Points at Harbourfront Centre is a series of discussions about contemporary culture focussing on artistic issues and current affairs local, national and international. Discussions take place on select Thursdays at 7 p.m. at Harbourfront Centre's Brigantine Room (235 Queens Quay West, Toronto). Admission is free on October 6. For further information, the public can call 416-973-4000 or visit www.harbourfrontcentre.com/viewpoints

For more information on SOCAN's many services and events please visit www.socan.ca or call 1-866-307-6226.

This event is generous supported promotionally by FLOW 93.5 FM, the Urban Music Association of Canada (UMAC). Keith Harris' appearance is made possible through the support of the Music Managers Forum (MMF).

Event Media Contact:
Shane Gerard, 416-973-4655 or sgerard@harbourfrontcentre.com
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