Jessie Reyez’s “Before Love Came to Kill Us” Makes Polaris Music Prize Short List

Jessie Reyez is on the short list…

The 2020 Polaris Music Prize short list has been announced, with the 29-year-old Colombian-Canadian singer/songwriter’s latest studio effort among the artists nominated for the award celebrating the best Canadian album.

Jessie Reyez

Reyez’s debut album Before Love Came to Kill Uswhich was released this past March, is among the 10 finalists.

This is the second year in a row Reyez has made the short list.

Jessie Reyez Before Love Came to Kill Us

Last year, her EP Being Human in Public lost out to Haviah Mighty’s debut album 13th Floor for the Polaris Music Prize. 

But Reyez isn’t the only Latina in the running this year…

Lido Pimienta’s Miss Colombia has earned a spot on the short list.

The 34-year-old Afro-Colombian singer’s previous album La Papessa won the Polaris online christian dating websites.

In addition to Reyez and Pimienta’s albums, others making the short list include DJ/Producer Kaytranada (Bubba), Caribou (Suddenly), rapper Backxwash (God Has Nothing to do With This Leave Him Out of It), Toronto rapper Junia-T (Studio Monk), bands nêhiyawak (nipiy), Pantayo (Pantayo), Witch Prophet (DNA Activation) and three-time Polaris short-listers U.S. Girls (Heavy Light).

The Polaris Music Prize awards $50,000 to the artist who creates the Canadian Album of the Year, which is judged on artistic merit, without consideration of genre or sales. 

The nine other nominated acts on the short list get $3,000. Eligible albums were released between May 1, 2019 and May 31, 2020.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the annual show will not be held in person, but the winner will be announced during a “cinematic tribute” on October 19.

Lido Pimienta’s “La Papessa” Wins Polaris Music Prize’s Canadian Album of the Year Title

Lido Pimienta has a massive reason to celebrate…

The Colombian Canadian musician’s La Papessa has been declared Canadian album of the year by the Polaris Music Prize grand jury.

Lido Pimienta

The award comes with a check for C$50,000 ($41,000) and was presented by last year’s winner, Kaytranada.

As the 11-member grand jury — selected from the larger jury pool of music media — debated about and voted on the 10-title shortlist behind closed doors at the venue, those artists were honored onstage with a thoughtful essay about their work and a custom-designed poster.

Some of the nominees also performed: Pimienta, Feist, Tanya Tagaq, Lisa LeBlanc, Leif Vollebekk and Weaves.

The audience of 900 was mostly comprised of industry, artists, sponsors and jurors with a small quantity of tickets sold to the public.

Lido Pimienta

The other nine albums on the 2017 short list were A Tribe Called Red‘s We Are The Halluci Nation; BadBadNotGood’s IV; Leonard Cohen‘s You Want It Darker; Gord Downie’s Secret Path; Feist’s Pleasure; Lisa LeBlanc’s Why You Wanna Leave, Runaway Queen?; Tanya Tagaq’s Retribution; Leif Vollebekk’s Twin Solitude; and  the eponymously-titled release by Weaves.

The albums are judged solely on artistic merit, without consideration of genre, sales or professional affiliation, according to the Polaris mandate. The eligibility period for the titles is June 1, 2016 to May 31, 2017.

The nominated albums had been selected by a two-part calculation process. This year’s 201-member jury — made up of music journalists, broadcasters and music bloggers from across Canada — selected 188 titles on the first online ballot, which asked for their top 5 picks ranked in order. The 40-title long list was then determined and the same jurors picked their top 5 from those 40 to determine the short-list.

Slaight Music again donated the prize money, C$50,000 for the winner and C$3,000 ($2,275) for each of nine short-listed acts.

Artists who have previous won the Polaris Music Prize are Kaytranada (2016), Buffy Sainte-Marie (2015), Tanya Tagaq (2014), Godspeed You! Black Emperor (2013), Feist (2012), Arcade Fire (2011), Karkwa (2010), Fucked Up (2009), Caribou (2008), Patrick Watson (2007), and Final Fantasy / Owen Pallett (2006).