Review: Juno Awards @ FirstOntario Centre

Well the Juno’s have come and gone, and I gotta say; I sure do feel proud to be a Hamiltonian. Er… wait, I’m not even from Hamilton. 

Sitting there in the FirstOntario Centre after walking down a freshly cleaned Bay Street it was clear the hometown crowd (who also really cleaned up for the occasion) was there to prove they deserved to host the Canadian awards show. It probably helped that Hamilton natives Arkells took home two awards (Group of the Year and Rock Album of the Year), along with a great performance of “Come To Light”, accompanied by Boris Brott and the National Academy Orchestra of Canada.

The evening’s host, Jacob Hoggard of Hedley made sure to keep to keep things exciting both for those watching in the arena and at home with his limitless high energy, a bit of censored cursing and the memorable “daddy’s boy” comment made to Ben Mulroney. He closed out the evening that flew by with his own rendition of Alanis Morissette’s “Thank U”

All the night’s performers seemed to be on a serious mission to impress. KieszaMagic!, and The Weeknd pulled out all the stops each and took home multiple Juno’s (Kiesza: 3, Magic!: 2, The Weeknd: 2). 

There were of course award winners who we didn’t get to see perform. Bahamas who took home Songwriter of the Year and Adult Alternative Album of the Year. July Talk who took home Alternative Album of the Year and Leonard Cohen who won Album of the year for Popular Problems. This is probably also a good place to mention that Fred Penner won Children’s Album of the Year, which was accompanied by an impressive amount of cheering.

Michael Buble (previous Juno’s host and the night’s winner of the Juno Fan Choice Award) gave Hoggard some hosting advice in a video call in the opening of the show saying, “kill ‘em with kindness.” We all laughed as he said this after raging about someone got his drink order wrong, but maybe what he should have said was kill em with talent, cause boy Canada, we sure got it.

Words by: Karlie Hopf
Photo by: CARAS/iphoto