The Juno Awards celebrate Avril Lavigne and Deborah Cox and host Simu Liu's many talents

The Juno Awards celebrate Avril Lavigne and Deborah Cox and host Simu Liu’s many talents

David Friend, The Canadian Press

Posted Sunday May 15, 2022 2:02 PM EST

Last update on Monday, May 16, 2022 5:25AM EST

Toronto – There was nothing complicated when it came to showing appreciation for Avril Lavigne at this year’s Juno Awards.

After Canada’s biggest music night has turned into a virtual party for the past two years, the celebration welcomed its live audience back with open arms and lots of love for Canadian pop-punk princess from Nappanee, Ont. By releasing her 2022 album “Love Sux”.

Lavigne performed a variety of her biggest hits, including Complicated, Girlfriend, Sk8er Boi, and I’m With You before returning to Shawn Mendes for a TikTok Fan’s Choice Award.

Even Junos host Simu Liu praised Lavigne by singing an unusual vocal performance of “Complicated” to a very supportive reception from the audience.

“I should have started with a low key,” Liu exclaimed as the performance deliberately derailed.

It was one of several moments of showmanship from the “Shang-Chi” star who opened Junos with a nod to his Marvel character before releasing his own version of Molson’s famous vow of “I Am Canadian.”

“I grew up on ketchup chips, roti, and Jamaican beef patties,” he told an audience at Toronto’s Budweiser Theater.

“By the way, it’s pronounced ‘bubble tea,’ not ‘buba,'” he joked.

Liu also used it as an opportunity to get more into politics, saying, “Canada is a place where the government is also our drug dealer; and we’re into ice skating not waterboarding; and where women always have a right to choose.”

A few moments later, he joined forces with TikTok star Tesher to perform the viral dance for “Jalebi Baby”.

Other Canadian stars have had their moments, too, including Montreal singer-songwriter Charlotte Cardin, who won the year’s biggest winner with a total of four titles.

She chose Album of the Year for “Phoenix” to air after the project won Pop Album of the Year at an industry event on Saturday. She was also named Female Artist of the Year and won Best Singing Song at a pre-television event.

“A year ago I wouldn’t believe you for even a second if you told me I won four Junos,” Cardin said after the show.

Mendes also received a Special International Achievement Award for his global impact on music, which he accepted with a view to his rise in the stratosphere to success.

“When I was younger, I used to think that if I could only write one great song, people would love me and I would be enough,” he said.

“We have been taught to believe that what we achieve is the same as what we deserve. But the thing I know is true now is that I was enough before anyone knew my name.”

Other winners include rocker Arkels representative for Group of the Year Hamilton, and Havia Maite who became the first woman to receive a rap album or EP of the year for “Stock Exchange.”

“This woman is in hip-hop,” she said while accepting the award.

Vancouver-based pop singer Jessia has won a female hit after the huge success of her single “I’m Not Pretty” on TikTok.

“Thank you very much,” she said, crying as she waved Juno in the air. “This is a dream come true.”

Deborah Cox was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame by former Toronto Raptors player Chris Bosh, who told audiences how her hit “Nobody Should Be Here” made a lasting impression on him.

Next, he provided a congratulatory video of Cox’s contemporaries, including John Legend and Melanie Fiona and CEO Clive Davis who signed her for the first time.

Cox took to the stage in an elegant gold thigh-high slit dress to reflect on three decades in the music industry and how her career gained momentum after she shrugged off Canadian record labels that closed them before moving to the United States.

“Growing up as a black girl in Toronto, Canada, this vision seemed intangible,” she said.

“It was not easy to leave my house but it was necessary. Otherwise, I am not sure I would be standing here this evening. These rejections became my redirection and only fueled my fire.”

Even before Junos started, many of this year’s nominees were talking about Avril Lavigne of everything.

Toronto rockers are represented by The Beaches, who have repeatedly expressed their obsession with Lavigne and finally got a chance to meet their idol when they crossed the aisles on the red carpet.

“We were all six and eight years old (when) her first album came out. It was very important for us to see a wonderful woman who plays amazing rock music,” said lead singer and guitarist Jordan Miller, whose band won rock album of the year this year.

“For her to be a local Canadian girl, (meaning) we can do what she’s doing, which is one of the reasons we’re here tonight.”

– With files from Sadaf Ehsan

2022-05-16 03:10:21

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