Say Hello to the Polaris Prize Short List
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Say Hello to the Polaris Prize Short List

It includes a couple of famous names and a whole lot of familiar faces—some of them from the GTA.


Earlier this morning, a handful of Canadian artists discovered they’d made the short list for the 2014 Polaris prize, which celebrates creativity and excellence in our nation’s music. Pared down from the 41-album long list, the 10-album shortlist features some names that have made the cut before—only Mac DeMarco, Jessy Lanza and Tanya Tagaq are appearing on the list for the first time—some that will now get a whole lot more recognition, and a couple that probably could not be more recognized if they tried (Arcade Fire, Drake).

The GTA region comes in for a share of the glory, with nods for Etobicoke-raised Basia Bulat, Hamilton’s own Jessy Lanza, Mississauga-born Owen Pallett, and Toronto-based acts Timber Timbre and YAMANTAKA // SONIC TITAN.

The winner will be decided by an 11-member jury made up of music journalists and broadcasters—and announced at a gala that will be held September 22 at the Carlu in Toronto, and hosted by comedian Jay Baruchel.

Past winners include Feist (2012), Arcade Fire (2011), Karkwa (2010), and Fucked Up (2009)—and, of course, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, who were for honoured last year for Allelujah! Don’t Bend! Ascend!, and turned out not to want the honour at all.

If you’re interested in listening to tracks from both the favoured few and the 31 deserving acts that didn’t make it this time around, here’s a long-list playlist.