Montreal neighbourhoods take top spots as Canada’s music creation capitals

Musicians play live music on the AZUR Metro train in Montreal, Que., Feb. 6, 2016.
Musicians play live music on the AZUR Metro train in Montreal, Que., Feb. 6, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Lee Brown

MONTREAL – The City of Montreal has long been known for its creativity – after all, there must be a reason why people flock here from all over the world to experience everything from the Jazz Festival to Just for Laughs.

Every nook and cranny of the city boasts a unique culture.

So, it may come as no surprise for some that the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada (SOCAN) named Montreal’s Mile End borough this year’s music creation capital of Canada.

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That means there are more working, royalty-earning songwriters and composers per-capita than any other region in the country.

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“We wanted to find out where the highest numbers of professional songwriters and composers are clustered,” said SOCAN CEO Eric Baptiste.

“Even though the majority of our members are not making a fulltime living creating music, we want to recognize the importance and value of these music creators and the role that they play in their communities as cultural entrepreneurs.”

With over 135,000 songwriters, composers and music publishers, and approximately $310 million in royalties collected in 2015, Canada is one of the most successful countries on earth when it comes to making music.

Six of the country’s top ten music centres are in Montreal, with Toronto rounding out the list.

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“Musical creation, even when it is the result of one person, is always shaped with the help of others and it’s not that surprising that [the Mile End] boasts the most successful songwriters and composers in Canada,” said SOCAN member Maxime Morin, who lives in neighbourhood.
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“Music is everywhere in Mile End. It’s truly a way of life, not just for a music creator like me, but for just about everyone who lives here.”

These are Canada’s top 10 music creation centres:

  • Mile End, Montreal
  • Plateau Mont-Royal North, Montreal
  • McGill Ghetto, Montreal
  • Trinity/Rua Açores-Little Portugal, Toronto
  • Parkdale/Roncesvalles, Toronto
  • Rosemont-la-Petite-Patrie,Montreal
  • Outremont, Montreal
  • Dufferin/Dovercourt Village, Toronto
  • Christie, Toronto
  • Plateau Mont-Royal North Central, Montreal

These are the most successful songwriting and composing regions in each province and territory:

  • Alberta – Mount Pleasant/Capitol Hill/Banff Trail, Calgary
  • British Columbia – NE Downtown/Gastown/Harbour Centre/International Village/Victory Square/Yaletown, Vancouver
  • Manitoba – River Heights East, Winnipeg
  • New Brunswick – Moncton Central
  • Newfoundland & Labrador – Downtown North Central, St. John
  • North West Territories & Nunavut – Yellowknife
  • Nova Scotia – Upper Harbour, Halifax
  • Ontario – Rua Açores Little Portugal/Trinity-Bellwoods, Toronto
  • Prince Edward Island – Charlottetown Southeast
  • Quebec – Mile End, Montreal
  • Saskatchewan – Regina South
  • Yukon – Whitehorse