Sheepdogs, Del Barber, Imaginary Win at Western Canadian Music Awards
Sheepdogs, Del Barber, Imaginary Win at Western Canadian Music Awards

Saskatchewan rock band The Sheepdogs, which won the coveted cover of Rolling Stone magazine back in August, celebrated a Western Canadian Music Awards win for Rock Recording of the Year last night (Oct. 24) for their album "Learn & Burn." Unable to attend the ceremony in Whitehorse, Yukon because they are on tour in the U.S., the four-piece sent in an amusing acceptance speech video shirtless in the shower.

Other wins at the WCMAs - held for the first time in this northwestern territory and streamed live on the CBC Radio from the Yukon Arts Centre - were Del Barber for Independent Album and Roots Solo Recording (for Love Songs For The Last Twenty), the only artist to take home two awards.

Rick Fenton of Canada's BreakOut West Q&A

Pop Recording went to Imaginary Cities' Temporary Resident; Rap/Hip-Hop Recording of the Year to Sweatshop Union's The Bill Murray EP; Roots Duo/Group Recording for The Wailin' Jennys' Bright Morning Stars; Songwriter to Romi Mayes' Ball and Chain; and Urban Recording to Souljah Fyah's I Wish.

Vancouver's 54.40, still going strong after 30-years, was inducted into the Western Canadian Music Hall of Fame. The rock band then capped the show by playing a handful of its biggest hits, including "I Go Blind" and "Ocean Pearl."

Earlier in the show, 54.40 frontman Neil Osborne and Canadian Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences president Melanie Berry presented The Agency Group president Ralph James with The 2011 Industry Builder Award. The Winnipeg native, who started his career as the bass player in the band Harlequin, is the agent for Nickelback, Three Days Grace, Billy Talent, and others.

On Saturday morning at The Westmark Hotel's Ballroom in Whitehorse, members of the music business gathered for Western Canadian Music Industry Awards

Honouring individuals and businesses stationed in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and the Yukon, nominee names had to be submitted in order to be considered for a WCMIA and winners were determined 50 percent by a jury and 50 percent by the members of the Western Canadian Music Alliance.

The Alliance is comprised of provincial music associations Alberta Music Industry Association, SaskMusic and Manitoba Music, MusicBC and territorial association Music Yukon. New this year is Northwest Territories.

Nine awards were given out at the ceremony and Manitoba came out on top with eight wins: Agency of the Year went to Paquin Entertainment Group; Independent Record Label to Head In The Sand; Live Music Venue to West End Cultural Centre; Manager to Gilles Paquin of Paquin Entertainment Group; Producer to Arun Chaturvedi; Talent Buyer to Chris Frayer of the Winnipeg Folk Festival; the Multi-Media Award to a performance film by Christine Fellows called Reliquary/Reliquaire; and engineer to Cameron Loeppky. The other provincial showing was Saskachewan for Best Album Design awarded to Jolene Higgins' Across The Plains.

2011 Western Canadian Music Award Winners:

Hall of Fame: 54.40

Industry Builder: Ralph James

Aboriginal Recording of the Year - Don Amero - The Long Way Home

Blues Recording of the Year - Little Miss Higgins - Across The Plains

Children's Recording of the Year - The Kerplunks - Number 3

Classical Composition of the Year - Marcus Goddard - Allaqi

Classical Recording of the Year - Peter Hannan - Rethink Forever

Contemporary Christian/Gospel Recording of the Year - The Sojourners - The Sojourners

Country Recording of the Year - Ridley Bent - Rabbit On My Wheel

Francophone Recording of the Year - Raphaël Freynet - Le monde à voir

Independent Album of the Year - Del Barber - Love Songs For The Last Twenty

Instrumental Recording of the Year - Five Alarm Funk - Anything is Possible

Jazz Recording of the Year - Night Crawlers with The Big Band Sound - Down In The Bottom

Pop Recording of the Year - Imaginary Cities - Temporary Resident

Rap/Hip-Hop Recording of the Year - Sweatshop Union - The Bill Murray EP

Rock Recording of the Year - The Sheepdogs - Learn & Burn

Roots Duo/Group Recording of the Year - The Wailin' Jennys - Bright Morning Stars

Roots Solo Recording of the Year - Del Barber - Love Songs For The Last Twenty

Songwriter(s) of the Year - Romi Mayes - Ball and Chain

Urban Recording of the Year - Souljah Fyah - I Wish

World Recording of the Year -Trio Bembe - Oh my soul

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