Calling all emerging Canadian recording artists: RBC announces Round 2 of First Up with RBCxMusic


Artist ambassadors Ali Gatie, DVSN, and Tenille Arts, plus a new partnership with The Remix Project help celebrate Round 2 of First Up with RBCxMusic

Firstup with RBC
Firstup with RBC

Applications open Tuesday, November 10 at 10:00 a.m. EST:


November 18, 2020, TORONTO, ON  RBC announced Round 2 of First Up with RBCxMusic, with a planned commitment into the new year. First Up will continue to spotlight emerging Canadian musicians and recording artists and help support homegrown talent through the challenging circumstances brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.

For the second round, 27 emerging musicians and recording artists along with nine alumni from Round 1 will be selected to participate. Each artist will receive a $1,000 stipend to perform a 10-minute virtual set hosted on the artist’s personal Instagram channel, with media and promotional support from RBCxMusic, and networking and mentorship opportunities with industry experts. A schedule of each week’s musical performances will be shared on the RBCxMusic Instagram page every Wednesday, with performances taking place Friday through Saturday evenings, starting November 27.

“Music has the unique power to bring people together. By extending First Up with RBCxMusic, we are proud to provide emerging Canadian talent with a platform to share their music and create connections with their audience during the pandemic,” said Matt McGlynn, Vice-President, Brand Marketing, RBC. “Working alongside likeminded partners such as Live Nation Canada and The Remix Project makes our program stronger and ultimately more meaningful to the lives of the emerging talent we support.”

For Round 2, First Up is excited to partner with notable Canadian artist ambassadors who will help build awareness of the program and share their own experiences in the music industry. Artist ambassadors include singer-songwriter Ali Gatie, who has exceeded a billion streams in total across platforms, including his Music Canada Certified 3x Platinum single “It’s You”, and R&B duo DVSN, who released an album earlier this year featuring Jessie Reyez. Tenille Arts, who was an insightful mentor for Round 1 artists, will be returning as an artist ambassador, bringing her country songwriting expertise to the program. Her single “Everybody Knows Everybody” is approaching the Top 10 on the Canadian Country charts.

“Giving back and investing in what’s next has always been our thing!” said DVSN. “First Up with RBCxMusic is helping upcoming artists during these crazy times and we’re excited to support them!”

Exciting new program offerings have been added to the second round of the series, including a partnership with The Remix Project – an organization created to foster the artistic talents and endeavours of youth from marginalized and underserved communities. The partnership will bring to life virtual community workshops that will provide access to notable industry leaders, with special guest speakers to be announced. These workshops will include a series of moderated discussions for both Remix students, the First Up with RBCxMusic roster and its alumni.

First Up with RBCxMusic is open to Canadian recording artists and musicians between the ages 18 and 35, who are in the early stages of their career and seek primary income from their music. Along with receiving funding and promotional support, recipients will have access to mentorship and networking opportunities with renowned Canadian artists through RBC’s partnership with Live Nation Canada. Applications will open on November 10 at 10AM EST and close on November 22, 2020 at 5PM EST.

First Up with RBCxMusic is part of RBC’s ongoing commitment to supporting emerging creative artists through the RBC Emerging Artists Project. Since 2015, over 25,000 alumni have been supported by the RBC Emerging Artists Project, with support from the RBC Foundation totaling over $8 million each year to hundreds of arts organizations across Canada.