The Rise of Canadian R&B Artists and Their Impact in 2018
Thanks to the Weeknd and Drake’s global success mixing his brand of hip-hop with R&B influences, many Canadian acts from Toronto and elsewhere around the country are now getting global attention for their well-honed talents. Canadian R&B artists are on the cutting edge of the sonic evolution of R&B and here you’ll find artists who represent the spectrum of sound currently found within the genre.
Majid Jordan is a Canadian Contemporary R&B duo, consisting of singer Majid Al Maskati and producer Jordan Ullman from Toronto, Ontario. They formed in 2011 and signed to OVO Sound, the record label co-founded by friend Drake, producer Noah “40” Shebib and Oliver El-Khatib, releasing their debut EP, A Place Like This, in 2014.
In 2017, they delivered their sophomore LP The Space Between which contains 13 tracks, with features coming from crewmates PARTYNEXTDOOR and dvsn.
Jessie Reyez is a Canadian-Colombian singer-songwriter from Toronto, Ont. The 27-year-old singer won “Breakthrough Artist of the Year” at this year’s Juno Awards. Her EP Kiddo features the hit songs, Figures and Shutter Island. Reyez’s debut LP is due in 2018.
Reyez has worked with big names in the music industry such as Canadian artist Daniel Caesar and Scottish DJ Calvin Harris. She has also collaborated with Bachata superstar Romeo Santos on the song Un Vuelo A La (A Flight To) from his latest album Golden.
Daniel Caesar, whose real name is Ashton Simmonds, is a Canadian Grammy-nominated R&B singer-songwriter from Oshawa, Ont. His debut studio album, Freudian, earned two Grammy nominations, including “Best R&B Album,” and for his performance of his hit song Get You
.Caesar sold out five straight shows at the Danforth Music Hall in 2017 and he scored a spot on Barack Obama’s list of favorite songs of 2017 for his song Blessed. The 23-year-old Juno award winner performed at the Coachella Festival in April and he’s scheduled to perform at many other music festivals this summer including Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival, Winnipeg International Jazz Festival, Lollapalooza and Afro Punk Fest
Anders is a 22-year-old R&B singer from Toronto, Ont. His debut EP, titled 669, features his standout single, You For You, which has been featured on many prominent playlists on Spotify and Apple Music.
He released his sophomore EP, titled Twos. Production for Anders’ newest 8-track project was handled by producers including Luca, FrancisGotHeat, S.L.M.N., Jordon Manswell and Bizness Boi.
Shay Lia is a French and Djiboutian Singer Songwriter based in Montreal, Canada. She has remained busy as of late, collaborating with a number of producers, most recently releasing the singles “What’s Your Problem” and “Cherish”
“I immediately felt comfortable in Montreal,” she told The FADER .“For a lot of people, this city is a place of transition and they make it quite easy for everyone to adapt and do what they love.” For her solo debut, Shay Lia reached out to Kaytranada, who brought in Toronto friends and regular collaborators BadBadNotGood; together they crafted “Blue.”