Honorary Award Recipients

The Dr. Helen Creighton Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented as part of the 2020 East Coast Music Awards presented by TD televised special airing Saturday, July 11 at 9 p.m. AT / 9:30 NT on CBC TV in Atlantic Canada and on CBC Gem across the country. The show will also be available on demand on CBC Gem following the broadcast. The televised special also features a tribute to the legendary Ron Hynes in celebration of his induction into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame with support from the SOCAN Foundation & Peer Music. The tribute brings together longtime members of his backing band and acclaimed artists such as Shaye, Joel Hynes, and Lennie Gallant.

Five other Honorary Awards - the Stompin’ Tom Awards - will be handed out live on CBC’s Weekend Mornings and CBC’s Weekend AM radio shows this Saturday, July 11.


Stompin’ Tom Awards:

Kinnon & Betty Beaton (CB)

Chuck Teed (NB)

Wonderful Grand Band (NL)

Brent Williams (NS)

Paul Bernard (PE)

More on the Stompin’ Tom Award recipients

Kinnon & Betty Beaton (CB): Kinnon and Betty Beaton are a husband and wife duo from Cape Breton. Born and raised in two incredibly musical households, the two have played at local concerts and dances for over half a century. Besides passing down the melodies of his ancestors, Kinnon has written hundreds of tunes, many of which are being played regularly in Cape Breton and beyond. Betty’s style, meanwhile, is greatly admired by the younger generations of pianists. Together, they’ve travelled throughout Canada, the US, UK, and Denmark to play festivals and share the music of their heritage. They’ve recorded several albums and were also featured on two recordings produced by the Smithsonian Institute.

Chuck Teed (NB): Chuck Teed has been a musician, administrator and educator in Saint John and Halifax across the past two decades. Through his position at Interaction Children’s Theatre, Teed has encouraged and guided hundreds of young people in Saint John. He was also co-chair of East Coast Music Week 2017 in Saint John, and has been involved in countless community-oriented events and organizations. Chuck's unflagging enthusiasm, commitment and dedication to all things music in Saint John for the past 20 years are without equal.

Wonderful Grand Band (NL): The Wonderful Grand Band is a Canadian music and comedy group formed in St. John's. The group was founded in 1978, and included comedians Greg Malone and Tommy Sexton. They released their first album, The Wonderful Grand Band, in 1979, with sophomore album, Living in a Fog, following in 1981. The group also had an eponymous television musical variety show on CBC Television, starring Ron Hynes, Sandy Morris, Ian Perry, as well as Malone and Sexton. The band reunited in 2009 and 2012, while 2017 saw The Wonderful Grand Band release a re-recorded version of Babylon Mall featuring Mark Critch on vocals.

Brent Williams (NS): Born and raised on a small farm in Hassetts, Nova Scotia, Brent developed a love and appreciation of music at an early age. The Birch Mountain Boys, Williams’ duo with fellow Afro-Canadian and lifelong friend Harry Cromwell, was one of the first groups to perform live bluegrass music in Canada. In the following years Brent toured extensively, began a solo career, and made regular television appearances on The Don Messer Jubilee, CBC TV, and more. In 1973, Brent was one of the founding members of the Canadian Country Music Association. He was inducted into the Nova Scotia Country Music Hall of Fame (2013), and received the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award from the African Nova Scotian Music Association (2015).


Paul Bernard (PE)
: Born in 1952 in Summerside, PEI, Paul Bernard was immediately taken with classical music from a young age. After some time at the Royal Conservatory of Music at the University of Toronto, he became the first Canadian to graduate from London’s Royal College of Music. Returning to Canada in 1976 to teach in Toronto and Montreal, Bernard also toured Canada and the United States. He then moved back to Prince Edward Island, opening a guitar academy and studio, which later became the well-known Paul’s Music Store. They had over 400 students each week, many of whom went on to graduate from UPEI's Music Program. In 1988, Paul produced his first album, Paul Bernard Spanish Guitar, followed by Majorca in 1992.


The recipients of the 2020 Honorary East Coast Music Awards are as follows: Directors’ Special Achievement Award:

Measha Brueggergosman - Measha began her career committed to the art of the song recital, and has presented innovative programs at Carnegie Hall, Washington’s Kennedy Center, and throughout the UK and Europe. Her first recording for Deutsche Grammophon, Surprise, is one of the most highly regarded debut albums of recent years, while her recording of the Wesendonck Lieder earned her a Grammy nomination. Off the stage, Measha is just as active: 2017 saw the release of her memoir (published by HarperCollins); she appears regularly on primetime TV (most recently advocating on behalf of contemporary Canadian literature); and leading children across the country in song, in a nationwide campaign for music education.

Dr. Helen Creighton Lifetime Achievement Award:

Shanneyganock - Shanneyganock are a Newfoundland phenomenon. The group has released 13 recordings with sales in excess of 100,000 copies, and their music has been featured on hundreds of compilation recordings. They’ve been recognized with numerous ECMA and Music NL awards and nominations, headlined at major festivals, and toured across Canada, the United States, Europe, the Middle East, and even the North Pole, all while promoting and preserving the music and songs of Newfoundland and Labrador. It was Shanneyganock’s music that served as the inspiration for the Tony-nominated score “Come From Away,” and the Shanneyganock songbook is a genuine reflection of the rich musical culture and history of Newfoundland.

Industry Builder Award:

Tony Murray - With over twenty years in the music industry, Tony Murray is a foundational figure in Newfoundland and Labrador, producing shows for CBC television, for the ECMA, MusicNL and NLAC Awards, and for local venues like The Ship Pub and The Rock House. Murray began his foray into the world of music in the 1980s when acts like Tina Turner, Corey Hart, and Supertramp were rolling into town to play shows at the old Memorial Stadium. For him, each show, whether big or small, is extremely important. Tony has won many awards and has produced numerous award shows, but it is working with the artists that gives him the most satisfaction.

Musician’s Achievement Award:

Kelly Russell - A professional musician since 1975, Kelly Russell has been a member of landmark groups Figgy Duff, The Wonderful Grand Band, The Plankerdown Band, Bristol’s Hope, The Irish Descendants, The Punters, and Kelly Russell & The Planks. One of Newfoundland and Labrador’s leading traditional music promoters and performers, his Pigeon Inlet Productions label released over 30 LPs and CDs from 1979 to 1997. He has been recognized with The Marius Barbeau Award for his significant contribution to Canadian folklore, designated as the Province’s first Tradition Bearer, awarded The Queens Diamond Jubilee Medal, and named to The Order of Canada.

About the ECMA Honorary Awards
Directors’ Special Achievement Award: The Directors’ Special Achievement Award is given only under special circumstances. The Award recognizes an organization, individual or group that has demonstrated an exceptional contribution to the music industry on a national and/or international level.


Dr. Helen Creighton Lifetime Achievement Award: The Dr. Helen Creighton Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes an individual who has had a profound and lasting effect on the Atlantic Canadian Music Industry. The award was renamed after Dr. Helen Creighton when Dr. Creighton received the award in 1991. The Board of Directors of the ECMA determines the recipient(s) of this award annually.


Musician’s Achievement Award: The Musician’s Achievement Award recognizes a side player/session musician, preferably from the host region, who exemplifies professionalism and quality musicianship on recordings and/or live performances of East Coast music, and deserves to be recognized for their cumulative contributions. The Board of Directors of the ECMA determines the recipient of this award annually.

Industry Builder Award: Each year the East Coast Music Association Board of Directors selects an individual, group, or organization that has made a significant impact on the welfare of the music industry in Atlantic Canada. The award recognizes the recipients’ genuine contributions to the East Coast music industry that are made, not simply for personal gain, but for the greater development of the East Coast Music industry.

Stompin’ Tom Award

Stompin’ Tom Connors, one of the most well known Canadian musicians, was presented with the Dr. Helen Creighton Lifetime Achievement Award in 1993. At that time he agreed to accept the award on one condition – that he could return it! Instead, he requested that an award be created to honour all those who have made a long-term contribution to the East Coast Music Industry and have paved the road for many successful East Coast artists of today. The Stompin’ Tom Award is presented to one individual or group from each of the East Coast Music Association’s five regions (Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, Mainland Nova Scotia, Newfoundland & Labrador and Cape Breton).




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À propos des Prix honorifiques
Prix du directeur pour réalisations exceptionnelles : Ce prix est donné uniquement dans des circonstances spéciales. Le prix reconnaît une organisation, un individu ou un groupe qui a démontré une contribution exceptionnelle à l'industrie de la musique au niveau national et/ou international.

Prix Dr. Helen Creighton pour l’ensemble des réalisations : Ce prix reconnaît la contribution d'un individu qui a eu un impact significatif à long terme sur l'industrie de la musique du Canada atlantique. Le prix fut rebaptisé en l'honneur de Dr. Helen Creighton, lorsqu'elle en fut lauréate en 1991. Le conseil d'administration de l'ECMA choisit le ou les lauréats de ce prix annuellement.


Prix pour réalisations exceptionnelles par un musicien ou une musicienne : Ce prix reconnaît la contribution d'un musicien de studio/musicien accompagnateur, préférablement de la région hôtesse, qui démontre professionnalisme et musicalité sur des enregistrements ou dans des concerts de musique de la côte Est, et qui mérite d'être connu pour sa contribution cumulative. Le conseil d'administration de l'ECMA détermine annuellement le lauréat de ce prix.


Pilier de l’industrie de l’année : Chaque année, le conseil d'administration de l'ECMA choisit un individu, un groupe ou un organisme qui a contribué de manière significative au mieux-être de l'industrie de la musique du Canada atlantique. Ce prix reconnaît la contribution sincère du lauréat envers l'industrie de la musique de la côte Est, au-delà des gains personnels, mais pour le développement global de l'industrie régionale.