When it comes to a Best New Artist category sometimes you can get it wrong like Milli Vanilli (Grammy’s 1990) or right a year later with Mariah Carey (Grammy’s 1991).   When it comes to the JUNO’s many artists have gotten the Breakthrough Artist Award (formally split as the male/female Most Promising Vocalist) but how many went on to success?   Here are my top 5 artists who took the JUNO Breakthrough Artist award and really made a career out of it!

5.  KIM MITCHELL:  He is a wild party and after breaking off from Max Webster he released his first solo album and then went on to release a string of hits that define Canada like Go for a Soda, Patio Lanterns and Rock N’ Roll Duty!

4.  COLIN JAMES:  If Canada has a legendary guitarist then Colin James has to be up there.  With a combination of rock, blues and big band, Colin continues to tour, has released 16 albums and gets people excited with great songs like Voodoo Thing and Just Came Back!

3.  AVRIL LAVIGNE:  Avril burst onto the scene as a skater punk princess but went on to capture our hearts as a true singer-songwriter with massive hits like ‘Complicated’, ‘I’m With You’ and ‘Girlfriend’.

2.  DRAKE (2010):  I don’t think there is anyone in the world who hasn’t heard of Drake.  He of course is one of the top biggest Hip Hop artists in the world and has a ton of hit songs like ‘Hotline Bling’.   Plus he was in Degrassi: The Next Generation!

1.  ALANIS MORISSETTE: (1992) –  The JUNO’s must have seen something in Alanis when they gave the award to this young dance artist but it wasn’t until she repackaged herself and released the album Jagged Little Pill that she became a mega-star!   I think everyone must own a copy of Jagged Little Pill by Canadian law.


The biggest mistake of the Breakthrough Artists has to have been in 1981 when Graham Shaw beat out a young upstart Bryan Adams to win the Most Promising Male Vocalist.  Well you can’t win them all….

The JUNO’s are happening at Budweiser Gardens Sunday March 17th!!

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