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Cory Stewart Drops Long-Awaited Debut Pop Album, ‘TOV’

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Queer Toronto-based artist offers an impressive 46-minute album debut delivered in three distinctive (and catchy) acts

TORONTO, ON (January 12, 2021) - On January 22, 2021, Toronto-based pop artist Cory Stewart drops his 17-track debut album ‘TOV’, a musical journey broken into three acts: betrayal, heartbreak and survival. Meticulously crafted over three years by Stewart and award-winning Canadian producer Gavin Bradley: ‘TOV’ was named after one of Cory’s life-long friends, Tovah Natalie, who passed away from cancer during the 2020 pandemic. ‘TOV’ is the follow-up to Stewart’s EP ’7 Different Sides’, which led to him opening for Boy George and the Culture Club in 2018.

TOV promo 2The album will be released under label Embrace Disruption (in partnership with AWAL/Kobalt) and features an all-star list of LGBTQ+ indie musicians, contributors and collaborators including Gavin Bradley, Jxckson, Kisos, MDL CHLD, Michelle Mondesir (of Madame Psychosis) and Zach Benson.

Pulling from influences in Stewart’s musical career, including the dance elements of Madonna and Kylie Minogue, the humour of Bette Midler, and the drama of Phantom of the Opera, Stewart hopes ‘TOV’ will be more than just a collection of songs, but a story of resilience and strength – geared to be experienced in full album form.

“Listening to an album from top to bottom is a lost pleasure these days,” says Stewart. “When writing songs for ‘TOV’, I worked closely with Gavin (Bradley) to make sure we told a story — one that could only be fully understood by listening in full; while also ensuring that each song carries its own individual narrative.”

Tracks like ‘What If’‘Poison’ (feat. MDL CHLD) and ‘End of Me’ (feat. Michelle Mondesir) explore themes of betrayal (both self-inflicted and external) through a dance floor beat, while ‘Happiness in Heartache’‘Little Lies’ and ‘Do You’ examine the complexities of heartbreak, through several perspectives. Followed by ’Grab the Fire’ (feat. Jxckson)‘No More Trips to London’ (featuring background vocals from Stewart’s mother, written about the loss of his grandmother), ‘Unhappy’ and ‘Little One’ (written and recorded for the album’s namesake Tovah – and played for her the night she passed), which deal with the pain of loss, and the struggle of survival. The album is also seasoned with tracks like ’Tu·mul·tu·ous Situation’‘Cut Those **** off’ and ‘Maybe I’m Insane’ which act as story-telling interstitials throughout the project’s 46-minute runtime.

 

‘TOV’ Track Listing

t.   Betrayal

1. What If
2. Poison (feat. MDL CHLD)
3. Outta My Head
4. End of Me (feat. Michelle Mondesir)

o.   Heartbreak

5. Tu·mul·tu·ous Situation
6. Happiness in Heartache
7. Little Lies
8. Do You
9. Anyway

v.   Survival

10. Cut Those **** off
11. Grab the Fire (LP Version) [feat. Jxckson]
12. You’re Like Mom
13. No More Trips to London
14. Unhappy
15. Maybe I’m Insane
16. Why Do I Even Try
17. Little One (feat. Tovah Natalie) [Demo]
 

‘TOV’ will be available on all streaming platforms January 22, 2021, and can be pre-saved/purchased by visiting http://coryjstewart.com.
 

About Cory Stewart

Cory Stewart has been described as synth-pop’s “smooth voice” (Billboard, 2020) who creates “fearless, unapologetic and relentlessly catchy” music (Canadian Beats, 2018). Stewart has been a supporting act for several legendary artists including the likes of Boy George and Crystal Waters. He is the host of the Official Queerantine Aftershow, which accompanies the weekly TRL-style indie music showcase show Queerantine, airing Sundays at 4:30 p.m. EST (new season begins January 2021). Cory also hosts the monthly online event “Queer Music Social”, which gathers musicians from around the world, and pairs them with music experts for Q&A style panels.

Website: www.coryjstewart.com

Twitter: www.twitter.com/coryjstewart

Instagram: www.instagram.com/coryjstewart

Twitch: www.twitch.tv/coryjstewart

    Toronto’s Cory Stewart and Austin’s Jxckson Unite on Sizzling New Dancehall-Pop Single “Grab the Fire”

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    TORONTO, ON  - As the weather gets cooler outside, pop artists Cory Stewart and Jxckson are determined to heat things up with their blazing new dancehall-inspired track, “Grab the Fire”. Coming to all streaming platforms December 3, 2020, the pair’s new single was inspired by the artists’ fire astrological signs; Cory being an Aries and Jxckson being a Leo.

    The two fiery singers met shortly after the pandemic hit at the online TRL-style indie music video showcase “Queerantine”, which coincidentally earned its name through a Twitter suggestion from Jxckson, and of which Stewart hosts an after-show companion called “The Official Queerantine Aftershow with Cory Stewart”. After bonding in the stream chat, the two quickly made plans to collaborate over Zoom. In the course of three sessions, the pair wrote “Grab the Fire”, and then went to recording studios in their respective cities to lay down vocals. Co-produced by Stewart and JUNO winner Gavin Bradley, the song features trombone, strings, pop synths, and a dancehall-inspired beat.

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    “It was such a delight to have the opportunity to work with Jxckson on this track,” says Stewart. “After we finished writing Grab the Fire, it was evident that we’d landed on the perfect amalgamation of both of our sounds. Without sounding too presumptuous, I think I can confidently say we’ll be working on a follow-up track in the very near future!”

    “Collaborating with Cory felt so natural and organic – which is particularly important to me,” says Jxckson. “I didn’t quite know what to expect prior to our first virtual session but I soon realized the magic we could create working together. In the end, It’s insane to see how our unique styles came together and blended so effortlessly.”

    “Grab the Fire” will be released December 3, 2020 on all major streaming platforms, and will be accompanied by a same-day online Twitch release party at 7 p.m. ET on Stewart’s channel: http://www.twitch.tv/coryjstewart. To stream “Grab the Fire” when released, please visit: https://snd.click/iujg.
    About Cory Stewart

    Cory Stewart has been described as synth-pop’s “smooth voice” (Billboard, 2020) who creates “fearless, unapologetic and relentlessly catchy” music (Canadian Beats, 2018).  He is the host of the Official Queerantine Aftershow, which accompanies the weekly TRL-style indie music showcase show Queerantine, airing Sundays at 4:30 p.m. EST (new season begins January 2021). Stewart has been a supporting act for several legendary artists including the likes of Boy George and Crystal Waters. Cory also hosts the monthly online event called “Queer Music Social”, which gathers musicians from around the world, and pairs them with music experts for Q&A style panels.

    Website: www.coryjstewart.com
    Twitter: www.twitter.com/coryjstewart
    Instagram: www.instagram.com/coryjstewart
    Twitch: www.twitch.tv/coryjstewart

     

    About Jxckson

    Jxckson is an Austin-based pop singer and dancer best known for his keen pop instincts. Delivering his best lines with a smirk, Jxckson combines infectious melodies with witty lyrics and metaphors. Although he treats genre as a moving target, Jxckson’s unique storytelling approach to his lyricsis a constant presence in his music. Jxckson was recently mentioned in PAPER magazine. His latest single, a dancehall-inspired pop track, “Mango” has been featured on an official ‘them.’ magazine playlist and has hit #1 on the QReview music chart.

    Website: www.jxckson.com
    Twitter: www.twitter.com/jxckson_music
    Instagram: www.instagram.com/jxckson.music

     

      Passionate human rights defender and refugee Christopher Nkambwe receives Canada’s largest single cash award in recognition of outstanding LGBTQIA2S+ leadership

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      TORONTO, ON (November 10, 2020) – On the evening of November 5, 2020, Ugandan-born LGBTQIA2S+ activist, refugee and trans woman Christopher Nkambwe (pronouns: she/her) was honoured with Community One Foundation’s Steinert & Ferreiro Award, a commemorative award and $10,000 cash prize that celebrates unsung heroes for their contributions to the Canadian LGBTQIA2S+ community. Christopher, a journalism graduate and long time human rights defender, is the 15th recipient of Community One Foundation’s Steinert & Ferreiro Award, superseding 2019 award recipient Kimahli Powell, Executive Director of the Canadian non-profit organization Rainbow Railroad.

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      Christopher Nkambwe’s activism journey began in Uganda, where she served as the Executive Director and founder of Service Workers in Group Foundation Uganda, along with volunteering at several other LGBTQIA2S+ organizations, advocating for better health and economic services for the community. Christopher was also at the forefront of organizing underground Pride Uganda events from 2014 to 2016, to highlight issues affecting the LGBTQIA2S+ community, before the event was bombarded by Uganda police – resulting in many being arrested for promoting homosexuality, an act that is against the law and culture in Uganda. In 2019, Christopher was conducting voluntary peer outreach for HIV/AIDS testing and counselling, along with Hepatitis B screening and condom distribution, when Ugandan police raided, attacked and threatened her with life imprisonment, which led her to seek asylum in Canada.

      Upon arrival in Canada, Christopher began her journey as a refugee claimant in Toronto. She was presented many challenges as a newcomer to the country; including finding employment, a lawyer and legal aid and even acquiring basic shelter. During her first few nights in Toronto, Christopher was forced to sleep outside the urinals of the 109 Peter Street intake centre, because of overcrowding in city shelters. After successfully submitting her refugee claim, it was these very challenges that ended up being the catalyst for Christopher’s next advocacy efforts.

      After four months of enduring the difficult immigration process and acquiring her refugee protection documents, Christopher sought free legal advice from The 519 legal clinic to register her LGBTQIA2S+ charity organization, The African Centre For Refugees in Ontario Canada. Through this organization, Christopher is able to integrate African LGBTQIA2S+ refugees to Canada through extensive social work and community development. She has been able to assist over 300 individuals with employment, health and housing referrals, despite having to run her organization with her part-time job cleaning salary, and no external funding. Christopher is continuing her important work throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, along with volunteering at several LGBTQIA2S+ organizations including The 519 and Black Lives Matter. She has also recently been chosen by The Ontario Council for Agencies Serving Immigrants to be a part of their advisory committee. Currently, The African Centre For Refugees in Ontario Canada is seeking out opportunities to acquire laptops for their staff, and PPE equipment for over 300 refugees.

      “It is with great honour that we are able to present Christopher Nkambwe with this year’s Steinert and Ferreiro Award,” says Community One Foundation Co-Chair Andrew Mainprize. “Although a tough decision, with many qualified applicants this year, it’s clear that Christopher’s tireless efforts to help LGBTQIA2S+ refugees, despite facing so many of her own challenges, embodies everything that this award represents. It is people like Christopher who continue to inspire, promote growth and create change at the heart of the Canadian LGBTQIA2S+ community.”

       

      About Community One:

      Established in 1980 as the Lesbian and Gay Community Appeal, Community One Foundation provides grants to LGBTTIQQ2S community projects in Greater Toronto Area including Durham, Halton, Peel and York Regions, focusing on the areas of arts and culture, health and social services, and research and education. The Foundation also promotes community philanthropy through strategic partnerships such as the Bill 7 Award and the LGBT Giving Network.

      Website: www.communityone.ca

      Facebook: www.facebook.com/CommunityOneFoundation/

      Twitter: www.twitter.com/C1Foundation

      Instagram: www.instagram.com/C1Foundation

        Canadian Electronic Producer Velvet Code Collaborates with Multi-Platinum NYC Producer FORD on New Release and Music Video for ’Break The Silence’

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        TORONTO, ON (October 13, 2020) - Queer and gender-fluid Canadian artist and producer Velvet Code has released a revisited Halloween-inspired version of their popular track ‘Break The Silence’, featuring multi-platinum NYC-based transgender and non-binary producer, FORD. This release will mark the first on Velvet Code’s new LGBTQIA+ music label, SO FIERCE MUSIC, and is a follow-up to the artist’s official remixes of Lady Gaga’s ‘Sour Candy feat. BLACKPINK’ and ‘Stupid Love’, released earlier this summer. The release is also accompanied by a haunting new music video, in which Velvet Code artistically conveys people’s struggle with isolation and mental health while under quarantine.

        Listen to ‘Break The Silence feat. FORD’ by clicking here.

        Watch the ‘Break The Silence feat. FORD music video by clicking here

        Velvet Code and FORD first met through a label executive, with Velvet quickly becoming obsessed with FORD’s use of bass and drums. FORD’s extensive experience (with credits on over 375 releases, including 56 Billboard hits) is evident in this new production of ‘Break The Silence’ and was driven by FORD’s initial reaction to the lyrics and message of the track.

        “What grabbed me first were the powerful lyrics; totally my kind of anthem,” says FORD. “I wanted the music to match that anthemic vibe with an infectious pounding swing, the kind that makes you drive a little too fast.”

        Velvet Code has had a busy 2020. In addition to launching their new LGBTQ+ label without borders, SO FIERCE MUSIC, this fall; the artist also hosts the weekly “Rise To The Rhythm” radio mix-show which is broadcast to over 130 digital, FM and satellite radio stations around the world. In addition to releasing ‘Break The Silence feat. FORD’, Velvet is also preparing for SO FIERCE MUSIC artist Sofonda Cox’s new release ‘Thrive’, arriving Friday, October 16, 2020.

        About Velvet Code:

        Velvet Code is a Canadian Electronic Music DJ, producer and artist based in Toronto, Canada. As a DJ and music producer, Velvet Code’s influences include DJ Paulo, Laidback Luke, Dada Life, BloodPop, Avicii, Peter Rauhofer, David Guetta and Calvin Harris. Velvet’s music can be described as ‘80s and 90s-influenced electronic dance music (“EDM”), most notably the sub-genres of EDM known as electro-house and progressive. Velvet Code’s weekly radio mixshow, “Rise To The Rhythm,” can now be heard on more than 133 digital, FM and satellite radio stations around the world each week; the stations include  Air Gay Radio and House Party Radio on Saturdays, I Need Music Radio on Mondays, EDM Sessions Radio on Thursdays, and Smooth Living 89.8 on Fridays. Velvet is also the founder of SO FIERCE MUSIC, an LGBTQIA+ record label and entertainment services company without borders.

        Website: https://www.sofiercemusic.com

        Social Media & Streaming Services: https://compiled.social/velvetcode

        About FORD: 

        One of the hottest Electronic Music Producers in the world, FORD is hitting strides as the Multi-Platinum production & EDM remixing maestro for major labels and stars. With credits on over 375 commercial releases (including 56 Billboard Hits), FORD has been producing music with the biggest stars on the planet for more than 25 years. FORD is recognized as one of the world’s most talented music producers, earning production credits on records selling over 30 million copies world wide.Since 2003, FORD has earned 19 Multi-platinum, Platinum and Gold RIAA sales awards for producing, mixing and remixing many of the world’s biggest artists including: Michael Jackson (for which FORD also earned a RIAA Diamond Award with 13.4 million copies sold), Ludacris, Rob Thomas, and countless other reputable artists.

          Cory Stewart Collaborates with NYC Producer Zach Benson to Release 80’s Inspired Track ‘Little Lies’

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          TORONTO, ON (October 7, 2020) - On October 15, 2020, Canadian pop singer-songwriter Cory Stewart will release his brand new track “Little Lies” via AWAL/Kobalt. The song is co-written and produced by NYC music darling Zach Benson.

          The track sees Stewart provide his most impressive vocal performance yet. His “smooth voice” (Jon Ali, Billboard, 2020) and artfully crafted lyrics bring listeners to a place of nostalgia and relatability with a tale-as-old-as-time love story gone wrong. Stewart’s collaboration with rising New York City talent Zach Benson is whimsical, reflective, and the perfect addition to listener’s fall playlists.

          “Writing this song with Cory was a perfect little escape from the chaos of quarantine,” says producer and co-writer Zach Benson. “We were instantly bouncing ideas off of each other and trying our hardest to make each other laugh or smile or go ‘yeaaaaahhh’. It’s dancey, it’s sassy, it’s vulnerable, and I’m so stoked for people to hear it!”

          “This song was cathartic for me in many ways,” says Stewart. “Although we wrote it with a wronged relationship in mind, Zach was very aware of the fact that I’d lost someone very important in my life. Through it all, Zach gave me a chance to escape my grief and return to what I love, writing music. His commitment to being a friend and a collaborator is absolutely responsible for how amazing this song turned out.”

          Over the past few months, Cory has spent a majority of his time working on other upcoming musical collaborations, along with hosting the Official Queerantine Aftershow (a Twitch-based talk show that airs Sundays at 4:45 p.m. EST, highlighting indie LGBTQ+ musicians) as well as spearheading an initiative with Community One Foundation, which awarded $50,000 in COVID-19 relief to drag performers in the Greater Toronto Area.

          Little Lies will be available for streaming/download on all platforms on October 15, 2020 at http://smarturl.it/corylies (Spotify) and https://smarturl.it/coryliesi (iTunes)

          About Cory Stewart:

          Cory Stewart (AWAL/Kobalt) has been described as an artist that creates “fearless, unapologetic and relentlessly catchy” music (Canadian Beats, 2018), providing a fresh perspective on LGBTQ+ issues. Cory has been a supporting act for a number of legendary artists including Boy George, Crystal Waters and Murray Head. Cory is also the host of the Official Queerantine Aftershow, which accompanies the weekly TRL-style indie music showcase show Queerantine, airing Sundays at 4:30 p.m. EST. Stewart’s debut album is expected early 2021.

          Website: www.coryjstewart.com

          Twitter: www.twitter.com/coryjstewart

          Instagram: www.instagram.com/coryjstewart

          Twitch: www.twitch.tv/coryjstewart

            Community One Foundation Awards Over $80,000 to LGBTTIQQ2S+ Initiatives in the Greater Toronto Area

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            TORONTO, ON (September 29, 2020) ‐ Fresh off the heels of gifting $50,000 in pandemic relief to drag performers across the Greater Toronto Area, Community One Foundation (a non-profit organization that provides grants to LGBTTIQQ2S+ community projects), is announcing the recipients of their 2020 Rainbow Grants. The Rainbow Grant program, which began in 1980, is one of many foundation initiatives supporting the LGBTTIQQ2S+ community, and has funded millions over the years through donations from individual donors and corporate partners.

            For 40 years, Rainbow Grants have helped nurture the early days of many Greater Toronto LGBTTIQQ2S community initiatives, grassroots projects, established organizations, and one-off projects. There are three different tiers of grants awarded; General (for projects or people that are not a part of an organization, charity, or corporation),  Foundation (for registered charities) and the newly created  James Stewart Rainbow Grant, (available to a charitable organization that provides a transformative project for the betterment of the community for years to come for up to $10,000) – created thanks to a generous bequest from famed mathematician and philanthropist James Stewart.

            “Our approach to giving has always been community focused first,” says Community One Foundation co-chair Andrew Mainprize. “With the added challenges of the pandemic, our allocations committee took extra care to make sure the unprecedented $80,000 in grants delivered this year were gifted to the organizations in the GTA who need it most.”

            “Community One at its heart has always sought opportunities and connections across our community to identify & support programs/initiatives that will continue to support and enrich the GTA,” says co-chair Terry Greene. “Since 1980, we’ve helped support essential organizations including The 519, Buddies In Badtimes Theatre, Black CAP, The ArQuives, and many others. Now more than ever, we’re grateful to be able to keep our tradition of giving alive during these trying times.”

            The following is a list of Rainbow Grant recipients in 2020:

            General Grants

            Queer Food Guides – promoting skill-sharing and care in LGBTQ+ communities through food by inviting LGBTQ+ people who are 50 years or older to host cooking classes with an intergenerational audience. Each session will include free food care packages delivered to people from the community who are in need.

            Mishmeres Nefashos – an educational workshop for college and high school student organizations and other community groups within the Orthodox Jewish community, creating awareness amongst community members regarding LGBTQ+ issues. The program will empower participants to advocate and work towards more inclusion in their communities.

            Cultivate – LGBTQ Yoga Summit – this summit will focus on QTBIPOC yoga practitioners who are striving to create space for marginalized communities. The goal is to enhance knowledge through sharing circles, share practices/models, and offer classes to the community.

            Music in Community: Rainbow Writes – music workshops for LGBTTIQQ2S youth hosted at the legendary Phase One Studios. Under the mentorship of successful local LGBTQ2S+ artists, such as Lynx from Random Order, participating youth will collaborate on the creation of original songs of self-expression, advocacy, and celebration for their community.

            Pay-it-Forward Community Nurturing – led by Paperhouse Outreach Collective and their youth-leaders. this group will “Pay-It-Forward” by co-hosting a 2-day mini-conference in Toronto, February 2021, for GTA-based 2SLGBTQIAP, Deaf, Mad, disabled, and BIPOC youth and community members.

            The POZ-TO Awards - recognizes those who are doing work in the community to raise funds for ASOs and awareness to fight the stigma associated with being HIV+. The 8th annual POZ-To Awards continues to build community and is slated to take place at Buddies In Bad Times Theatre.

            AQUA: Asian Queer Alliance – providing food/craft socials and educational or skill-building workshops. This group will organize at least one program per month, to support 70 queer Asian cis and trans women and non-binary people in the GTA.

            Glory Hole Gallery – the world’s first, and only, miniature gallery space dedicated to the creative talents of LGBTQ2S+ artists; all while pushing the boundaries of creativity within a 12″x 12″ box. The gallery showcases the perspectives of diverse and intersectional LGBTQ2S+ experiences through collaborations, exhibitions, and talks.

             

            Foundation Grants

            Access Me – Boys in Chairs Collective – a new theatre piece created by Boys In Chairs Collective. This will be a co-produced premiere production with Cahoots Theatre at Toronto’s Buddies In Bad Times Theatre.

            Searching for Eastman - Will enhance the immersive experience for audiences and adds video projection to stage design to create promotional material for dissemination to theatres.

            Bind Safe – an educational video series and downloadable PDF to promote safe binding practices, education around the basics of gender dysphoria, and additional resources where both youth and parents can seek support.

            Eating Disorders in the LGBTQ2S Community: A Toolkit for Compassion and Inclusivity for Every Body - creating toolkits, available in both hard copy and electronically, to provide information on eating disorders regarding the unique needs of the LGBTQ2S Community. It will focus on the requirements of the community who are directly affected by disordered eating and also provide guidance to professionals serving them.

            Rainbows Pride in Scarborough (RPIS) - Galaxy Photo Express (GPE) continues from Disability Express Photo Shoot, allowing youth to educate and bring awareness to community organizations and the broader community. GPE will offer education, workshops, and training and decrease invisibility around ableism and sexism. GPE empowers LGBTQ2+ youth to become educators and leaders in their own communities.

            Rainbow Cultural Adventures: Reducing Social Isolation Through the Arts – provides opportunities for LGBTQ+ seniors to experience Toronto’s cultural landscape through outings (from movies and cultural performances to educational speakers). This project will create connections among LGBTQ+ seniors, provide a sense of belonging, and foster community and pride.

            Rainbow GPS Project for Asian LGBTQ Newcomers – an orientation project for East/Southeast Asian LGBTQ newcomers transitioning to live in Toronto. Through monthly drop-in sessions, LGBTQ concepts are introduced including gender identities, coming out, relationships, and online safety by learning the language, culture, and resources to navigate and connect to the Toronto LGBTQ community.

            Sistema: Fay and Flay – this project will enable at-risk children ages 6-14 in neighbourhoods across Toronto and who are students in Sistema’s after-school program, to participate in workshops with drag stars Fay & Fluffy.

             

            James Stewart Grant

            The Gender Identity, Attraction & Orientation Puppetry Project - focusing on the creation of three educational puppetry performances to be researched, developed, and tested by a group of queer arts professionals and writing experts, eventually to be performed for school children (JK-Grade 1, Grades 2-3, and Grades 4-6) in the GTA.

             

            About Community One:

            Established in 1980, Community One Foundation provides grants to LGBTTIQQ2S community projects in Greater Toronto Area including Durham, Halton, Peel and York Regions, focusing on the areas of arts and culture, health and social services, and research and education. The Foundation also promotes community philanthropy through strategic partnerships such as the Bill 7 Award and the LGBT Giving Network.

             

            Website: http://www.communityone.ca

            Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/CommunityOneFoundation/

            Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/C1foundation

            Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/C1Foundation

              LGBTQIA+ Total Request Live-Inspired Show ‘Queerantine’ Kicks Off Season Two

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              Acclaimed weekly online music video showcase, aimed at supporting up-and-coming indie queer musicians, begins its 10-week run on August 9, 2020

              NEW YORK, NY (August 5, 2020) Queerantine, a one-of-a-kind, weekly music video showcase highlighting artists across the LGBTQIA+ spectrum, created and hosted by musical artist Kisos, will make its triumphant return to streaming platform Twitch on Sunday, August 9, 2020, at 3:00 p.m. EST.

              Queerantine’s first season premiered on March 22, 2020 with host Kisos and week one co-host, emerging artist Zach Benson, to support and elevate queer musicians during the pandemic crisis. Over the course of 15 weeks, Queerantine developed a strong, dedicated following among musicians and fans alike, each week celebrating up to 12 independent artist music videos from around the world. With a rotating all-star cast of co-hosts including the likes of Michael Medrano, Raquel Lily, Elliot Jones, NYC DJ Jon Ali and more, Queerantine quickly became the Sunday afternoon event for the world-wide LGBTQIA+ community. Throughout the first season, Queerantine also acted as a fundraising platform, raising over $4500 for Black Lives Matter and $2000 for NYC-based charity G.L.I.T.S. (Gays and Lesbians Living In a Transgender Society).

              “Finding community is HARD! Once the pandemic started and LGBTQ+ meeting places closed, I felt the need to create a platform that not only acted as a digital hangout but also fostered true friendships and connections within the community,” said creator Kisos. “By the end of the first season, we had artists who met over the course of season one, featuring their own new collaborations on the show. That’s when my heart officially melted, and I knew Queerantine was truly making a difference.”

              Queerantine Poster - Twitter QUEERANTINE Thumbnail - Ep 2 (1)

              Season two of Queerantine promises to bring fans a whole new line-up of exciting, emerging indie LGBTQIA+ music videos and co-hosts, including Miss Eaves, Megan Lenius, Matkai Burmaster among many others. It will also see the debut of The Official Queerantine Aftershow (airing directly after Queerantine) hosted by Toronto-based pop artist Cory Stewart

              Queerantine can be streamed weekly on Sundays at 3:00 p.m. EST starting August 9, 2020 at https://www.twitch.tv/itskisosThe Official Queerantine Aftershow will air directly following the Queerantine broadcast at https://www.twitch.tv/coryjstewart.
               

              About Queerantine: 

              Queerantine is a one-of-a-kind, weekly music video showcase highlighting artists across the LGBTQIA+ spectrum, airing on Sunday afternoons at 3:00 p.m. EST, presented by musical artist Kisos.

              Each week host Kisos sources 10 visuals, that he and a co-host can spotlight and react to — live on Twitch (a well-known video live streaming service operated by Twitch Interactive, a subsidiary of Amazon) while interacting with and inviting an engaged audience to discover new and exciting musical artists in the community.

              Twitter: @queerantineshow

              Instagram: @queerantineshow

              About Kisos: 

              NYC-based moody alt-pop singer Kisos began his career in music publicity in 2014. Soon after, he translated his first music job into his own publicity firm, Miller Place, while simultaneously cultivating a strong following on live-stream service Twitch (twitch.tv/itskisos).

              A regular fixture on outlets such as Billboard Pride, Atwood Magazine, Paper Magazine, Highclouds and Spotify’s own Cosmic Playlists, Out Now and Discover Weekly; Kisos is a strong, quirky and loveable advocate for the LGBTQ+ community.

              Along with hosting several weekly live shows on Twitch, Kisos recently released his sophomore EP which has been streamed over 500,000 times across all platforms.

              Website: kisosmusik.com

              Twitter: @itskisos

              Instagram: @itskisos

              About Cory Stewart:

              Cory Stewart (AWAL/Kobalt) has been described as an artist that creates “fearless, unapologetic and relentlessly catchy” music (Canadian Beats), providing a fresh perspective on LGBTQ+ issues. With over 500,000 downloads and streams of his music, Cory has been a supporting act for a number of legendary artists including Boy George, Crystal Waters and Murray Head.

              Website: coryjstewart.com

              Instagram: @coryjstewart

              Twitter: @coryjstewart

                Canadian Electronic Artist Velvet Code Debuts New LGBTQ+ Summer Anthem, “Teenage Dreamer”

                TORONTO, ON – Fresh off the heels of releasing an official remix for Lady Gaga’s “Stupid Love” (Universal/Interscope), Velvet Code is making a spectacular return to form with his new single, “Teenage Dreamer”. The song, dropping Friday, July 24, 2020, is accompanied by a cutting-edge, digitally enhanced 4K music video, filmed entirely while in self-isolation.

                Blending vibrant progressive house and electronic influences, “Teenage Dreamer” is the first follow-up single to Velvet Code’s 2019 sophomore album release, “Dreamer”. The song, which is written, produced, mixed and mastered by Velvet Code, is an empowering electronic anthem filled with nostalgic and thought-provoking lyrics; aimed to connect with fellow members of the LGBTQ+ community

                “Over the past few difficult months, I’ve felt compelled to write a song that empowers listeners to continue to dream big and not give up hope,” says Velvet Code. “Teenage Dreamer embodies the joy and happiness I’d like to impart on my amazing supporters as they navigate through these tough times.”

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                In addition to producing and releasing new music, Velvet Code also hosts the weekly “Rise To The Rhythm” radio mix-show; which is broadcast to over 130 digital, FM and satellite radio stations around the world. He also hosts a weekly one-hour “Solitary Confinement Saturdays” show on Facebook and Instagram live to an average of 20,000 – 30,000 viewers. Velvet is also in the midst of developing an inclusive LGBTQ+ record label, which will be formally announced later this year.

                “Teenage Dreamer” can be pre-saved here, and will be available on all major music platforms beginning Friday, July 24, 2020, including Spotify, iTunes, Apple Music, Beatport, Google Play/YouTube, Amazon, Pandora, Deezer, Tidal, iHeartRadio, ClaroMusica, Saavn, MediaNet, and Shazam.

                 

                About Velvet Code:

                Velvet Code is a Canadian Electronic Music DJ, producer and artist based in Toronto, Canada. As a DJ and music producer, Velvet Code’s influences include DJ Paulo, Laidback Luke, Dada Life, BloodPop, Avicii, Peter Rauhofer, David Guetta and Calvin Harris. His music can be described as ‘80s and 90s-influenced electronic dance music (“EDM”), most notably the sub-genres of EDM known as electro-house and progressive. Velvet Code’s second full-length 2019 studio album “Dreamer” was recorded in Toronto, Canada with additional production in New York and Los Angeles. On Dreamer, Velvet Code collaborated with songwriter Wendy Starland (Lady Gaga), with production contributions from Gavin Bradley, Joe Laporta (Sterling Sound NYC), Rob Bryton, Robi Banerji and Scott Kelly (Westlake Studios). Velvet Code’s weekly radio mixshow, “Rise To The Rhythm,” can now be heard on more than 133 digital, FM and satellite radio stations around the world each week; the stations include Dash Radio’s ElectroCity, Jack’d Up Radio Network and its affiliates, EDMSessions Radio and many others.

                Website: http://www.velvetcode.com

                Social Media & Streaming Services: https://compiled.social/velvetcode

                  Local Non-Profit Establishes $50,000 COVID-19 Relief Fund for GTA Drag Community

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                  Community One Foundation to provide 100 local drag artists with $500 grants as part of their “We Are Family – Emergency Drag Support Fund” this June.

                  TORONTO, ON (May 28, 2020) – In celebration of Pride month in Toronto, Community One Foundation (a non-profit that provides grants to enhance the development of LGBTTIQQ2S communities in the Greater Toronto Area), is announcing Community One Foundation’s We Are Family – Emergency Drag Support Fund — a $50,000 COVID-19 relief program to financially assist local drag artists in the GTA.

                  “Drag queens and kings have been the essence of Toronto’s queer community for decades. A hobby for some and a career for others. The drag community has not only been a source of entertainment for all, but they have often been leaders within our cause, fighting for equality, inclusion and rights for all community members,” says Community One Foundation board member Sam Katz.

                  “While the drag community has moved to online platforms, the tips do not compare to the revenue they were generating in the bar and club scene. With additional event cancellations, including Pride, our drag family is financially devastated,” adds board member Cory Stewart.

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                  Community One Foundation will distribute 100 grants of $500 each, to eligible, in-need community members. To qualify for a grant, drag artists must be residents of the Greater Toronto Area, attribute drag revenue as a significant source of regular income, and require funds for essential living. Applicants can apply by visiting www.bit.ly/c1drag. Applications are now open and will close on Thursday, June 18, 2020 at 5:00 p.m. ET.

                  With an over 40 year history, Community One Foundation has provided financial support to countless LGBTTIQQ2S projects and organizations in the GTA including The 519, Buddies in Bad Times, Black CAP, Toronto PFLAG, Inside Out, Asian Community AIDS Services, Toronto People with AIDS Foundation, Rainbow Railroad and many others.

                  Upon delivering grants to selected applicants, organizers of the “We Are Family – Emergency Drag Relief Fund” are hopeful to extend further grants to support additional in-need segments of the LGBTTIQQ2S community, but depend on public donations to continue in their efforts. To donate to this Community One Foundation initiative, please visit www.communityone.ca.

                   

                  About Community One:

                  Established in 1980 as the Lesbian and Gay Community Appeal, Community One Foundation provides grants to LGBTTIQQ2S community projects in Greater Toronto Area including Durham, Halton, Peel and York Regions, focusing on the areas of arts and culture, health and social services, and research and education. The Foundation also promotes community philanthropy through strategic partnerships such as the Bill 7 Award and the LGBT Giving Network.

                  Website: www.communityone.ca

                  Facebook: www.facebook.com/CommunityOneFoundation/

                  Twitter: www.twitter.com/C1Foundation

                    The Q Review Kicks Off Pride Month with “One Love Live!” Virtual Queer Music Festival

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                    The three-day celebration (May 29 – 31) will feature live music performances, panels, drag performances, and more with LGBTQ+ artists from around the world.

                    TORONTO, ON (May 20, 2020) – With the disappointing news of cancelled Pride festivals sweeping the globe, The Q Review (a Canada-based online outlet, covering independent LGBTQ+ musicians worldwide) announces “One Love Live!”, a virtual queer music festival taking place May 29 – 31, 2020. The three-day online event will feature a collection of live music performances, panel discussions, a new music release party, drag performances, a special edition of Queerantine (an online “MTV Total Request Live-style” LGBTQ+ music video show) and more.

                    “Each year, Pride festivals have a unique and magical way of uniting LGBTQ+ people to celebrate our victories, look to the future and remember how far we’ve come,” says Q Review founder Kenney Fitzpatrick. “Creating this virtual queer music festival is more than just about replacing the physical one. In this new normal we’re living in, we have the ability to reach audiences and showcase all the amazing talent thriving in the queer music community. Through a larger lens, this festival will also allow connections to be made with queer youth who may not be in safe and accepting spaces during these socially distant times. It’s about reaching out to them to let them know they’re not alone.”

                    “One Love Live!” boasts a jam-packed schedule throughout its three-day run, and will be simultaneously broadcast via Zoom and twitch.tv platforms. Opening on Friday, May 29, 2020 at 5:30 p.m. EST and closing on Sunday, May 31, 2020 at 11:00 p.m. EST, the full schedule can be viewed below, or by clicking here.

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                    For Zoom and twitch.tv link announcements, along with full artist and participant bios, please visit: https://www.qreview.ca/one-love-live.html

                     

                    About The Q Review: 

                    Established in 2018, The Q Review serves as a voice for the independent LGBTQ+ artist. As the only outlet of its kind, The Q Review creates opportunities for the advancement and appreciation of LGBTQ+ music and artistry across the globe. The outlet continues to expose the latest and best LGBTQ artists and their music with reviews, the Q32 music chart, the Q Review Podcast, the New Q New Release Playlist, interviews, features and more!

                    Website: www.qreview.ca

                    Weekly Podcast: Spotify | iTunes

                    Q32 Weekly LGBTQ+ Music Chart: www.qreview.ca/q-32-chart.html

                    Instagram: www.instagram.com/theqreviews

                    Twitter: www.twitter.com/theqreviews

                    Facebook: www.facebook.com/theqreviews

                     

                    For more information, photos or interview requests, please contact:

                    Danielle Watson

                    Embrace Disruption PR 

                    danielle@embracedisruption.com

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