Get to know Juno breakthrough group nominee the Franklin Electric

The Montreal-based band has opened for Mumford & Sons and performed on The Bachelorette Canada.

The Montreal-based band has opened for Mumford & Sons and performed on The Bachelorette Canada

The Montreal-based band is nominated for the Juno Award for breakthrough group of the year. (Le Petit Russe)

The Juno categories of breakthrough artist and group of the year have gone through a few different identities in their 44-year history, but what's never changed is the incredible pedigree of the categories' winners. A veritable who's who of now-established and future Canadian music industry icons have taken home these coveted Junos.

Breakthrough artist winners include Burton Cummings, k.d. lang, Colin James, Alanis Morissette, Jann Arden, Avril Lavigne, Michael Bublé, Feist, Drake, the Weeknd and Alessia Cara. The list of breakthrough group winners is equally star-studded: Bachman-Turner Overdrive, Rush, Glass Tiger, the Tragically Hip, Nickelback, Alexisonfire, Said the Whale and A Tribe Called Red.

This year's crop of nominated artists and groups features an exciting and diverse array of musicians. From Toronto-based R&B singer-songwriter Jessie Reyez and Montreal-based electro-pop singer-songwriter Charlotte Cardin to the Iqaluit-based folk-rock act the Jerry Cans and the Regina-based bluegrass band the Dead South, almost every music fan will find something to love in the nominees.

Think of the Junos as an opportunity to survey just a little bit more of the country's music scene, its depth and breadth, and then keep checking back every Thursday and Friday as CBC Music posts its handy primers for each artist and group, as well as some context to help deepen your appreciation of these great musicians.

Who: The Franklin Electric.

Where: Montreal.

Sound: Indie folk-rock.

Why they're nominated: In some ways, this nomination comes four years late, as the Franklin Electric generated major buzz with its self-released 2013 debut, This is How I Let You Down. Indica Records liked what they heard and re-released the album in 2014, and the Franklin Electric ended up touring all over the place, opening for the likes of Mumford & Sons and Half Moon Run. Singer and guitarist Jon Matte is the focal point of the group, with a rotating cast of musicians that right now includes Martin Desrosby, Kevin Warren and Ken Pressé. Together, the band released its second album, Blue Ceilings, in 2017.

Previously: Matte was, according to the Montreal Gazette, a "songwriter for hire, studio hand, pub band player and trumpeter with Bran Van 3000." The Franklin Electric also won a major Nashville songwriting competition, edging out 8,000 other bands globally.

Fun fact: The Franklin Electric performed on The Bachelorette Canada when it filmed in Montreal in 2016. Apparently the scene featured Jasmine and Mikhel making out while listening to the hometown band.

Quote: "Music was part of my life since very young and I owe that to my mom. She got me playing piano and sang songs with her brothers and sisters in harmony, which had a great influence on my natural ear and musical style." — Matte to the Harlton Empire, 2017

'I Know the Feeling' (2017)

'Strongest Man Alive' (2015)

'Old Piano' (2014)

'This is How I Let You Down' (2013)


Get to know Juno breakthrough artist nominee Allan Rayman

Get to know Juno breakthrough group nominee James Barker Band

Wherever you are in the world, you can watch the 2018 Juno Awards broadcast live from the Rogers Arena in Vancouver on March 25 at cbcmusic.ca/junos.


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