Nfld. & Labrador

N.L. artists snag 59 East Coast Music Award nominations

Newfoundland and Labrador artists have landed 59 nominations for this year's East Coast Music Awards.

Awards taking place May 3-7 in Halifax

A black background with the ECMA logo and information about the 2023 East Coast Music Awards.
The East Coast Music Awards will take place May 3-7 in Halifax. (East Coast Music Association)

Musicians and industry members from Newfoundland and Labrador have landed 59 nominations for the 2023 East Coast Music Awards.

The province is represented in more than 30 categories, including album of the year, country recording of the year and Indigenous artist of the year.

Reggie Morales of St. John's, nominated for rap/hip-hop recording of the year for his album Regicide, said it feels "pretty crazy" to be nominated alongside prominent Canadian rapper Classified.

"I, like, grew up listening to Classified," he said. 

Fellow nominee Albert Dalton — up for his album If I Can't Have It — mastered Morales's album. Morales said more young people in the province are becoming more involved in hip-hop. 

"The hip-hop scene is definitely growing around here," he said.

A person holding an acoustic guitar sings on stage.
Kellie Loder finished Canada's Got Talent in the runner-up spot last year. Now they are nominated for entertainer of the year. (Kellie Loder)

Kellie Loder of St. John's earned their nomination for songwriter of the year — where they're competing against Conception Bay South band Quote the Raven — on the back of songs they wrote for Mallory Johnson and the Ennis Sisters.

"I love writing songs and I really love writing songs for other artists. And that's the reason I'm nominated this year for songwriter of the year," they said.

Loder, the runner-up in Canada's Got Talent in 2022, is also nominated for entertainer of the year, which is voted on by music fans.

Peter McDonald of St. John's, known professionally as Pete, is up for children's entertainer of the year. 

While he says he never thought that he would be considered for this category, he is excited about the nomination.

"This particular album all came about when my brother had a little girl named Macy. And when she was born, my sister-in-law, Megan, kept on saying I'd love to have some music for her to fall asleep with," he said. 

At the same time, two of the other writers on the album, Sarah Newell and Spencer Fitzgerald and Sarah Newell, became an aunt and uncle.

"There was a lot of love in the room and a lot of thoughts about babies. A lot of thoughts about lullabies and just being relaxed and chill. And that's kind of what we wrote about," he said.

Other nominees from Newfoundland and Labrador include Fortunate Ones, Jason Benoit, Andrew Staniland, Rawlins Cross, Mallory Johnson, Kubasonics, Deantha Edmunds and Nick Earle.

The ECMAs take place May 3-7 in Halifax. 

Read more from CBC Newfoundland and Labrador


Sarah Antle


Sarah Antle is a journalist working with CBC in the St. John's bureau.


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Become a CBC Account Holder

Join the conversation  Create account

Already have an account?