With production now wrapped on the inaugural season of THE LAUNCH, CTV has unveiled the first 30 artists selected to participate in the all-new, six-part musical series slated to premiere in mid-season. Introducing Canadians from across the country to THE LAUNCH‘s astonishing array of aspiring artists.
Hand-picked from among more than 10,000 emerging performers, the artists were selected to be on THE LAUNCH following an international casting call and completion of an extensive A&R and review process. Vying for the chance of a lifetime – the opportunity to record and perform a new original song written by a world famous songwriter/producer and mentored by a panel of internationally renowned music industry legends – the selected artists face the life-changing prospect of being catapulted from discovery to stardom in just 48 hours.
Representing wildly diverse musical tastes, styles, and genres running the gamut from Blues to Broadway, Pop to Soul, R&B to Reggae, Hip Hop, Alternative, Rock, Folk, Jazz – and more, THE LAUNCH‘s emerging artists illustrate a vast array of styles and hybrids of genres both vocally and instrumentally, indicative of the platinum standard of talent taking part in the series’ inaugural season.
“The driving force behind THE LAUNCH is disruption at every level – in reinventing the music television genre, in launching new artists, and in creating music’s next big songs,” said Scott Borchetta, President and CEO of Big Machine Label Group. “We can’t wait for audiences across the country to meet these artists and be blown away by their talent, just as our superstar mentors were week after week. We are proud to pioneer this new and unique television and music industry footprint.”
Hometown: Calgary, Alta.
Musical Genre: Original bluesy pop-rock
With a voice that is a combination of smooth pavement and rough gravel, and the ability to charm listeners with her sweet tones, yet stun audiences with her ability to hit any high note, Amy’s spectacular performances to date include collaborations with Moby, April Wine, Farmer’s Daughter, and Chris Cummings.
Dream Duet Partner: I would LOVE to perform with k.d. lang, I think our voices would blend so well together!
Personal Motto: There’s always something to be thankful for.
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Amy-Bishop
Hometown: Brampton, Ont.
Musical Genres: R&B, soul, hip-hop, pop, and reggae.
The singer and multi-instrumentalist discovered her passion for music at a young age. The Brampton, Ont. teen was the lead in Broadway Bound’s “Grease” production in 2011.
By The Numbers: Her YouTube™ channel received more than 14,000 hits only a few months after launching.
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Divine-Lightbody
Hometown: Toronto, Ont.
Musical Genres: R&B, hip-hop
The singer/songwriter released her first EP in 2014, garnering positive buzz from Toronto’s underground music scene for her seductive vocals and 90s-reminiscent vibe, and has been booking gigs ever since.
Dream Performance Space: Madison Square Garden
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Faiza
Hometown: Acton, Ont.
Musical Genres: Pop, blues, rock
The singer/songwriter expresses his adventurous soul through his unique blend of pop, blues, and rock-infused music, learning over the years that no matter the scale of venue in which he is playing, music is something he will always love and cherish.
Dream Musical Duo: Jimi Hendrix
Full Bio: CTV.ca/James-Marshall
Musical Genres: Pop/alternative/rock
Meet The Band: The high-energy, alt-pop group is comprised of brothers Brent and Brian Wirth, Nick Haberer, and Joey Muha.
The Band’s Sound: Meshes programmed electronic loops, ethereal keyboards, and melodic guitar counterpoint with organic instrumentation bringing a refreshing, high-energy vibe to the alternative-pop genre.
Debut EP: American Towns released in 2016, featuring debut single “Rhythm In The Stars”.
Can’t Live Without: My piano and pizza (Brent); Coffee! (Brian)
Dream Musical Venue: Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Colorado (Nick)
Hobbies: Being a full-time bunny parent! (Joey)
Full Bio: CTV.ca/LITEYEARS
Hometown: Ohsweken, Six Nations Of The Grand River, Ont.
Musical Genres: Folk/blues/soul
Raised in the town of Brantford, Ont., Logan Staats started writing and performing music in his early teens. His haunting and distinct voice has provided opportunities to share the stage with acts such as Buffy Sainte-Marie, Keith Secola, and Mumford and Sons, to name just a few. Armed with his guitar and harmonica, the folk/blues/soul artist is determined to raise the bar for Indigenous/ mainstream crossover music.
What inspires you musically? Culture, love, loss, desperation, and healing
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Logan-Staats
Hometown: Salt Spring Island, B.C.
Musical genres: R&B, jazz, alternative, pop
Singing before she could even talk, Nicky plays several instruments including piano, guitar, and harp. She never hesitates to take every opportunity she can to perform, with her jazzy vocals flowing beautifully over the alternative/R&B music she strives to write and perform.
Can’t Live Without: Coffee!
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Nicky-Mackenzie
Musical Genres: Pop
Started by brothers Tyson and Myles Erlick in 2015, The Revel Boys began as a collective of friends making beats and YouTube cover videos and has been building steam ever since. The Revel Boys current lineup also includes GTA rapper/songwriter Akiel Julien, singer/beat maker Noah Zulfikar, and singer/keyboardist Josh Lamb.
Collaborations To Date: Jocelyn Alice, Kojak, Walk Off the Earth, Commissioner Gordon and White Tiger Society, and Lionshead.
Full Bio: CTV.ca/The-Revel-Boys
Hometown: Georgetown, Ont.
Musical Genres: Pop, Broadway, jazz
Singer, songwriter, dancer, actress, and model Vivian Hicks is truly a quintuple threat. Taking up singing and dancing at a very early age, Vivian has won numerous awards in her disciplines, including more than 11 U.S. scholarships.
Musical.ly Inclined: Vivian has made a name for herself on social media with several of her raw videos going viral on Instagram and Facebook. She has more than 1 million fans on Musical.ly, receiving re-posts and accolades from her idols including Fifth Harmony, Bruno Mars, Meghan Trainor, The Chainsmokers, and more.
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Vivian-Hicks
Hometown: Moncton, N.B.
Musical Genres: Pop, pop-rock, folk-pop
Multiple award-winning Canadian songwriter, performer, and recording artist Zack Lane has shared the stage with artists including Jann Arden, Jeff Cook, and the iconic group Alabama, and he has garnered numerous grand prize wins at coveted vocal competitions, enthralling audiences across North America.
Can’t Live Without: Pizza!
Musical Inspiration: My family heritage, rooted in the musical and culturally-rich region of Newfoundland.
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Zack-Lane
Hometown: The Pas, Manitoba
Current City: Toronto
Musical Genres: R&B, Hip-Hop
Basil began singing and writing music after an accident at the age of 13 left her hospitalized and bedridden for months. She began writing songs to instrumental beats she found on YouTube™, recording ideas to her phone, and eventually working with a producer to create original compositions. With smooth vocals and introspective lyrics reminiscent of Lauryn Hill mixed with Sade, Basil has amassed a strong following on Instagram and has begun recording songs for the release of her debut EP.
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Basil-Phoenix
YouTube: Ethan Young
Musical Genres: R&B, Pop
Ethan’s love for performance and songwriting began at a very young age. While attending Karen Kain School of the Arts, Ethan became one of the famed Mini Pop Kids, performing for sold-out audiences across Ontario. He was featured on three Mini Pop Kid albums that were sold in retail stores internationally. Ethan regularly performs for charitable events including ThreeToBe, Covenant House, Children’s Wish Foundation, and Jacob’s Ladder.
Dream Musical Venue to Perform in: Air Canada Centre
Top 3 Favourite Musical Artists: Whitney Houston, Adele, and Miley Cyrus.
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Ethan-Young
YouTube: Ezra Jordan
Musical Genres: R&B, Pop
Ezra Jordan took up piano at the age of four. A graduate of the Independent Artist Program at the Musician’s Institute in Hollywood, CA, Ezra blends the genres of R&B and alt-pop with his keyboard-oriented approach to songwriting to create a style that is soulful, refreshing, and authentic. At the age of 18, Ezra suffered a traumatic and life-threatening leg injury. Forced to put a hold on his classical piano training during his 18-month recovery process, he turned to singing and songwriting as a musical outlet. Back on his feet with his newly honed talents, Ezra joined Juno nominated singer-songwriter Scott Helman as his keyboard player and backup singer.
Musical Bloodlines: Surrounded by music his whole life growing up with parents Marc Jordan and Amy Sky – both in the music industry.
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Ezra-Jordan
Hometown: Rothesay, N.B.
Genre: Pop, Soul
An acoustic guitar-playing singer-songwriter at heart, Jaryd Stanley mixes elements of rock, hip-hop, soul, pop, dance, and folk into his songs. Jaryd’s versatility is paramount in creating his ever-evolving sound, earning him “Fan Favourite” status for CBC’s 2017 National Searchlight song writing competition, as well as being named the 2017 Grand Prize Winner of Canada’s Walk of Fame Emerging Artists Music Mentorship Program. A small town “Maritimer” with big city dreams and boundless potential, his debut EP “sixteen ten” was released in mid-2017.
Top 3 Favourite Musical Artists: Ed Sheeran. Joel Plaskett. Carole King.
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Jaryd-Stanley
YouTube: Jayd Ink
Music Genre: R&B, soul, hip-hop, pop, and reggae
As an independent artist, Jayd Ink has accomplished a great deal of success with her music. The R&B singer-songwriter has been releasing music since 2013, with her background in poetry allowing her to effortlessly move through a myriad of musical genres. Jayd has been headlining shows in Toronto since the release of her first EP “Invitation Only” in 2015. Capturing listeners around the world with her unique voice, Jayd has also performed in Japan alongside K.Camp, DJ Whoo Kid, and Silento, and is recognized as “Toronto Musicians to Watch in 2017” by NOW Magazine.
Dream Duet: Janet Jackson
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Jayd-Ink
YouTube: JP Maurice
Musical Genres: Pop/rock/alt-country
After touring Canada and Europe, a loss in the family caused JP to focus on channeling his emotions into his music. The tragedy resulted in his “Girls” EP, which sweeps from cinematic pop-noir into slinky neo-soul, all tied together with JP’s powerfully emotive vocals. Challenges haven’t stopped JP Maurice – if anything, they have made him stronger.
Dream Musical Venue to Perform in: Coachella, or main stage of the Sasquatch! Music Festival
Full Bio: CTV.ca/JP-Maurice
YouTube: Noelle Maracle
Hometown: Tyendinaga, Ont.
Musical Genres: R&B, soul, acoustic pop, EDM, all with jazz influence
When Noelle Maracle was eight years old, her brothers convinced her to audition for the television show KARAOKE STAR JR., an experience that helped her realize how much she enjoyed performing. Later that year, Noelle won YTV’s “Virtual Next Star” singing contest and presented Justin Bieber with his first Platinum Award in Toronto. To date, Noelle has had the honour of singing at the National Aboriginal Achievement Awards, Andrea Menard’s TV Christmas special, and being backed up by an amazing children’s choir at “Reach for the Rainbow”. Noelle also wrote the ballad song for Dance for Kindness 2016. Her YouTube™ channel currently has 27 million views and over 92,000 subscribers.
Dream Musical Venue to Perform in: Carnegie Hall, with an amazing piano player and jazz band.
Dream Duet: Daniel Caesar
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Noelle-Maracle
Hometown: Ancaster, Ont.
Musical Genres: Alternative rock/indie rock
After being inspired to write her first song at the age of nine, Poesy is now fully immersed in the alternative indie world of music. With her named derived from an archaic word for poetry, and a callback to her time as an English and Creative Writing major at Western University, Poesy finds inspiration in literature, 1970s rock, thrift stores, and bus rides, to create the narratives present in her own songwriting. Poesy’s infatuation with all types of art is behind the short story she wrote to accompany each track on her debut EP, “The Spotless Mind”. With her piano skills in her pocket, she dabbles with anything she can get her hands on – guitar, ukulele, you name it – in order to make her cathartic style of music.
Musical Influences: Freddie Mercury, Katy Perry, Florence Welch, Kurt Cobain, and Stevie Nicks.
Dream Musical Venue to Perform in: Wembley Stadium
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Poesy
YouTube: Raymond Salgado
Hometown: Nanaimo, B.C.
Current City: Lantzville, B.C.
Music genres: Pop/R&B, classical, musical theatre
Raymond Salgado’s love of music came at a very early age, inspired by a large Filipino community that loves to sing, dance, and perform. A veteran of competitions, festivals and concerts, Raymond has been the representative for Provincial Performing Arts of B.C. for the last six years and recently won the Senior Classical at Provincials 2016. For the last nine years, Raymond has been a student of voice lessons at Andrea Bertram Studio. He has combined those skills with his passion for musical theatre, with roles in musicals such as Benny in the production of Rent, Donkey in the musical Shrek, and Valjean in Les Misérables.
Top 3 Favourite Musical Artists: Mariah Carey, Sam Smith, Shawn Mendes
Nicknames: Slaymond, Baemond, Ray-Ray, Ray Bae
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Raymond-Salgado
YouTube: Sons of Daughters
Current City: Nashville
Meet The Band: Chrystal Leigh and Jimmy Thow
The Band’s Sound: Country
Since their move to Nashville, Sons of Daughters have collaborated with numerous Grammy®-nominated songwriters, helping them to expand their musical repertoire. They have recorded a six-track debut EP entitled “Pick your Poison”, which was created with legendary Grammy®-nominated Producer Mike Fraser (AC/DC, Metallica, Aerosmith); and Juno-nominated, CCMA winner, Writer and Producer Jeff Johnson (Wes Mack, Dallas Smith). The duo is committed to carving their own unique sound in the modern country scene through captivating vocal harmonies, swampy guitar riffs, and catchy lyrics.
Dream Duet: The Rolling Stones because I’m in love with Keith Richards (Chrystal Leigh)
Favourite Personal Performance to Date: Playing for AC/DC at a private dinner party (Jimmy Thow)
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Sons-of-Daughters
Hometown: London, Ont.
Musical Genre: Soul, Folk, R&B
Earning a reputation as an “artist to watch” while playing hundreds of shows since 2011, Chad has shared the stage with the likes of Ben Harper, The Strumbellas, Walk Off The Earth, Lights, and many more. After releasing his first album in 2012, Chad’s only aim now is to share the music he has so carefully created with the rest of the world.
Dream Duet Partner: John Mayer
As a kid I wanted to be: A ninja
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Chad-Price
Hometown: Belle River, P.E.I.
Musical Genres: Indie, Folk, Pop, Rock
With a sprawling vocal range and compelling approach to composition, Dylan has made an indelible mark in the talent-rich Atlantic Canadian music market with his 2013 debut EP, “Heather Avenue”. Earning him Music PEI Award nominations and acclaim from industry influencers, the release led him to high-profile performances throughout the Maritimes, including opening slots for City and Colour and Ron Sexsmith.
Dream Duet Partner: Paul McCartney
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Dylan-Menzie
Hometown: Forest, Ont.
Musical Genres: R&B, Pop
The exuberant singer-songwriter began her career in entertainment as a model. Her passion for performing arts garnered her modeling campaigns and acting roles for the London 2012 Olympic Games, Canada’s Wonderland, IMAX, and even landing her on a billboard. Throughout, she was writing catchy melodies and emotive lyrics, teaching herself to record demos, and performing for audiences of more than 4,000 people.
Music Video in 10 Words: Classy but sexy, and fun!
Good Luck Charm: My pinky ring. I put it on in 2014 as a commitment to my career in entertainment. I had no idea at the time that it was what engineers do, haha!
Full Bio: CTV/ca/Elequen
Hometown: Perth, Ont. (Elijah); Ottawa, Ont. (Jamie)
Musical Genres: Pop, Jazz, Hip-Hop, R&B
The “x” in their name is pronounced “and”, but it could also be said to represent the multiplying effect the two artists have on one another. When instrumentalist/composer Elijah and lyricist/vocalist Jamie put their passions together, the possibilities are endless. Feeling as though they complete each other creatively, Jamie admits to being the more emotional of the two, and is well aware of how Elijah’s focus provides the counterbalance needed to stay on course.
Hobby: Sleeping (Elijah)
Good Luck Charm: Probably Elijah…don’t tell him I said that, though.
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Elijah-Woods-X-Jamie-Fine
Hometown: Toronto, Ont.
Musical Genres: Indie
Inspired by artists like Amy Winehouse, City and Colour, and Matt Maeson, Grace’s voice offers sounds from many different places. Beginning singing at a very young age, Grace is also self-taught on guitar. With fresh ideas, mature songs, and past inspirations for her newer music, Grace is ready to show the music industry something real and exciting, and to use her life experiences and unique look to inspire others to be who they truly want to be.
Hobbies: Photography and poetry
Favourite Sport: Basketball or Javelin
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Grace-Bakker
Musical Genre: Folk
Under the pseudonym of Havelin, Edmonton’s Alex Zaichkowski strives to tell a story with his music. Channeling his inner folk writer, Havelin takes cues from the early influences of Dan Mangan, Tom Waits, and Father John Misty. His words are straight from the heart and his music is kept simple, honest, and cuts right to the core.
Can’t Live Without: Tea, good conversation, good food.
Artist You Want to Open For? Shakey Graves
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Havelin
Hometown: King City, Ont.
Musical Genres: Indie, Pop
Spending countless hours in studio sessions, Julia’s ambition, creativity, and positive attitude has brought along life-changing opportunities and helped her grow both personally and as an incredible independent artist. Captivating audiences with her vocal range and musical variety, Julia has showcased these skills at venues such as Toronto’s Mod Club, The Opera House, and a multitude of private events.
Favourite Sport: Soccer
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Julia-Tomlinson
Musical Genres: Soul
Calm, quiet, shy, funny, and reserved are all adjectives that best describe 15-year-old Sariyah…until she starts to sing! The 2015 Youth Grand Champion of CNE’s Rising Star, and a multi-medalist for Team Canada at the 2016 World Championships of Performing Arts in Los Angeles, Sariyah has been moving audiences with her mature and soulful vocals since the age of seven. With performances at Toronto’s Opera House, Danforth Music Hall, Yonge-Dundas Square, Hugh’s Room, the Hard Rock Café, the Rose Theatre, and the CNE already under her belt, Sariyah demonstrates the value of hard work and determination.
Hobbies: singing, drawing, writing
Three Strengths: Honest, resourceful, loyal
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Sariyah-Hines
Musical Genres: Rock, Blues, Alternative
Bursting onto the local Calgary scene at the ages of 14, The Static Shift were the youngest band to ever headline the Blues Can. Now with more than 130 live performances under their belt and multiple award wins, The Static Shift has shared the stage with Trooper, Colin James, The Sheepdogs, and more.
Meet The Band: Mitchell Brady (guitar/lead vocals), Keone Friesen(bass/harmonica/background vocals), and Isaiah Stonehouse (drums/background vocals)
Music Video in 10 Words: Playing instruments, underwater, with some sharks (Isaiah)
Good Luck Charm: Bellbottoms
Dream Performance Venue: The Royal Albert Hall in London
Full Bio: CTV.ca/The-Static-Shift
Musical Genres: Pop, R&B
Beginning her singing career at the age of 10, Victoria made a name for herself after winning several local singing contests. Inspired by the contest wins and fueled by her passion for the stage, she worked with one of Canada’s top vocal coaches, Elaine Overholt, to further hone her already impressive vocal range. As a member of acclaimed singing group Mini Pop Kids, Victoria recorded three albums and conducted a nationwide tour, selling out stadiums across Canada.
Can’t Live Without: Music, my phone, family, friends, and shopping
Dream Performance Partner: Ed Sheeran, Bruno Mars, Demi Lovato
Full Bio: CTV.ca/Victoria-Azevedo
A staggering roster of musical A-listers join THE LAUNCH co-creator and world-renowned music mogul Scott Borchetta in the series’ inaugural season to amplify the experience for the 30 selected artists with invaluable industry guidance and mentorship. Superstar mentors include Shania Twain, Fergie, Boy George, Alessia Cara, Nikki Sixx, Julia Michaels, and Jennifer Nettles.
In addition, award-winning producers/songwriters cast alongside Borchetta in the breakout season of THE LAUNCH include OneRepublic’s Ryan Tedder, busbee(P!nk, Shakira, Blake Shelton), Dann Huff (producer behind more than 50 #1 hit records ), Ian Kirkpatrick (behind multi-platinum hit songs from Jason Derulo and Selena Gomez), and Canada’s own Stephan Moccio, the music mastermind behind massive, inescapable hits like the quintuple-platinum “Wrecking Ball”.
For full details on The Launch including air date and broadcast times visit www.ctv.ca/TheLaunch