Interview With CIRAA Executive Director Zack Leighton

CIRAA (Canadian Independent Recording Artist’s Association) is a non-profit organization which supports thousands of artists across Canada with education, opportunities and more. Zack Leighton, the Executive Director, was recently interviewed for website Ways We Work.

Canadian artist entrepreneurs are an underserved population of professional artist. Many of us know local artists that are touring 100+ dates every year, creating music, selling albums and merchandise, receiving radio play, placing their music in film and television and so on. There are an astounding number of artists that are not successfully making a living making music yet because they have carved out a unique career path that may not fit into a traditional music industry model. Often they are neglected by various organizations and funding bodies in our country. They exist in an industry that is at times quite volatile and disenchanting when support is clearly not available.

CIRAA is providing small opportunities for these artists where they do not exist and we are furthering their collective voice among policy makers, public servants, politicians and the like. Our programs are becoming more and more coveted, our membership is expanding and we’ve established a strong voice among government at a provincial and federal level. It’s incredibly rewarding to make a difference in the careers of over 12,000+ artists nationwide – big or small. CIRAA is doing just that and in 2015, we believe our initiatives will have an even larger impact. 

Bandbox gives me the opportunity to work in a more one-on-one role with many established and emerging Canadian acts. If CIRAA is the macro, Bandbox is the micro – I get to provide insight and support to some of Canada’s best acts. Being a part of their team without having to fill the role of manager or label, etc is incredibly rewarding. I guess you can sort of think of it like an advisor to a king?


Read the full interview on Ways We Work.

Larry Lootsteen

Music is life and I love to write about all things music. Independent music blogger. Writer in general. I am a big fan of alternative and indie music but there's no genre I haven't found something to like.

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