Media Advisory – Launch of A New Voice: The Canadian Music Creators Coalition

Canadian musicians, songwriters and producers unite to provide a new voice in Canadian copyright and cultural policy. Canada's leading artists to speak for themselves.

Montreal, April 26

In recognition of World Intellectual Property Day, Canada's leading musicians, songwriters, and producers are today announcing the creation of A New Voice: The Canadian Music Creators Coalition. The CMCC will ensure that lobbyists for major record labels and music publishers are not the only voices heard in debates about Canada's copyright laws and other key cultural policy issues.

Together, coalition members have won dozens of Juno and Grammy awards, and have sold tens of millions of albums worldwide. The CMCC includes some of the most recognizable names in Canadian music, such as Barenaked Ladies, Avril Lavigne, Sarah McLachlan, Chantal Kreviazuk, Sum 41, Stars, Raine Maida (Our Lady Peace), Dave Bidini (Rheostatics), Billy Talent, John K. Samson (Weakerthans), Broken Social Scene, Sloan, Andrew Cash and Bob Wiseman (Co-founder Blue Rodeo).

Multinational record labels are vocal in their desire for changes to copyright laws that would facilitate lawsuits against our fans and increase their control over the enjoyment of music. To our alarm, the labels advance these demands not merely on their own behalf, but in our names as necessary for the well-being of individual Canadian musicians in the digital age. Today the people who actually create Canadian music are speaking out for themselves.

The CMCC is united under three key principles:

Suing Our Fans is Destructive and Hypocritical

Artists do not want to sue music fans. The labels have been suing our fans against artists' will, and laws enabling these suits cannot be justified in artists' names

Digital Locks are Risky and Counterproductive

Artists do not support using digital locks to increase the labels' control over the distribution, use and enjoyment of music or laws that prohibit circumvention of such technological measures. Consumers should be able to transfer the music they buy to other formats under a right of fair use, without having to pay twice.

Cultural Policy Should Support Actual Canadian Artists

The vast majority of new Canadian music is not promoted by major labels, which focus mostly on foreign artists. The government should use other policy tools to support actual Canadian artists and a thriving musical and cultural scene.

For comment on the Canadian Music Creators Coalition, its goals, policies and direction, please contact Steven Page (Barenaked Ladies) c/o Adam Smith (604) 730-7902.

For more information on the coaltion visit www.musiccreators.ca