Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame inducts ‘As The Years Go By’ and ‘Câline de blues’

Antoine Gratton in studio.  Photo credit: Mathieu Lavoie / Société Radio-Canada
Antoine Gratton in studio. Photo credit: Mathieu Lavoie / Société Radio-Canada

The Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame (CSHF) is pleased to announce the most recent songs to be inducted into the Hall of Fame: ‘As The Years Go By’ and ‘Câline de blues’. As part of their induction, these songs are celebrated and honoured through Covered Classics, a collaboration between the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame and CBC/Radio-Canada that invites Canada’s brightest musical talent to perform their own rendition of newly inducted songs. In the latest instalment of Covered Classics, SOCAN member and Juno Award winner Antoine Gratton (a.k.a. A*STAR) pays tribute to the Hall of Fame’s newest song inductions with compelling performances of ‘As The Years Go By’ and ‘Câline de blues’ that can be viewed below:

The Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame ( honours and celebrates Canadian songwriters and those who have dedicated their lives to the legacy of music, and works to educate the public about these achievements. National and non-profit, the CSHF is guided by its own board of directors who comprise both Anglophone and Francophone music creators and publishers, as well as representation from the record industry. In December 2011, SOCAN (the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada) acquired the CSHF. The Hall of Fame’s mandate aligns with SOCAN’s objectives as a songwriter and publisher membership-based organization.

“I’m honoured to perform these songs as part of the Hall of Fame’s Covered Classics series,” says Gratton. “‘As The Years Go By’ and ‘Câline de blues’ are an important part of Canada’s songwriting heritage, and I wanted to do justice to these incredible songs.” Antoine’s graceful acoustic renditions of these rock classics feature soulful vocals and piano, and a beautiful arrangement performed by the string quartet Quatuor Orphée. Gratton, an impressive singer-songwriter in his own right, is a multi-instrumentalist, and an esteemed producer and arranger.

In 1970, ‘As The Years Go By’ made Montreal’s Mashmakhan, a four-man progressive-rock band, an overnight sensation. With lyrics written by SOCAN member Pierre Sénécal, the song explores Sénécal’s insights into the many possible forms of love, from childhood to old age. It became a No. 1 hit in Canada with a platinum certification (more than 100,000 records sold), and charted in the U.S., where it spent 18 weeks on Billboard‘s Hot 100 chart. The single sold half a million copies in the U.S., and in Japan it became the third-largest selling single in that nation’s history to that point. It also earned Pierre Sénécal a SOCAN Classics Award in 1999.

“To have ‘As The Years Go By’ inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame is truly a prestigious accolade,” says Sénécal. I’m happy to see a talented Canadian artist like Antoine revisit this classic and introduce it to new generation of music lovers.”

‘Câline de blues’ is a revered, classic blues-rock anthem that helped establish the international profile of the group Offenbach. The song, born from the bass of Michel (Willie) Lamothe, the melody of Gérald (Gerry) Boulet, and the pen of Pierre Harel, is a tongue-in-cheek lament about a bluesman’s girlfriend having left him because he spends too much time playing the blues. “It’s an honour to have ‘Câline de blues’ recognized by our songwriting peers. I’m pleased and excited that the song has inspired subsequent generations of songwriters and artists,” said Harel. ‘Câline de blues’ received a SOCAN Classics Award in 2004 for over 25,000 radio plays, was included in the Montreal Gazette’s list of Quebec anthems, and is one of the most performed songs at blues festivals across Quebec.



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