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Newzapalooza Annual Media Battle of the Bands Turns it to 11

Google Play Music matching every dollar, publishers pony up for a great cause

TORONTO —As Nigel Tufnel of Spinal Tap puts it, turning it to eleven means “it’s one louder, isn’t it? It’s not ten.” Newzapalooza is celebrating its 11th show this year and it promises to be even bigger — and louder — than last year’s extravaganza, which raised a record $17,000 for the Children’s Aid Foundation.

Bigger? Presumptuous, says our skeptical editor. But our sources confirm Google Play Music is matching every dollar raised, which means the big winners are vulnerable youth who receive scholarships for post-secondary educations that are otherwise out of reach (ok, this is huge – ed).

On Friday, Nov. 6, 2015, at The Opera House, 735 Queen St. E., seven bands made up of hacks from the Toronto Sun, The Globe and Mail, Toronto Star, National Post, BNN, The Canadian Press and Vice Canada, will take to the stage to raise money for the foundation. The event has raised more than $100,000 so far.

Hosted this year by award-winning broadcast journalist Piya Chattopadhyay, the event will showcase the musical chops of hacks who remarkably still have day jobs in the media industry. This year’s panel of celebrity judges includes Kirstine Stewart of Twitter and author of Our Turn, musician, former NDP MP and very recent victim of strategic voting Andrew Cash, music aficionado, columnist and Metro Morning regular Errol Nazareth, and actor Zaib Shaikh, Toronto’s Film Commissioner and Director of Entertainment Industries and one of the stars of CBC hit show Little Mosque on the Prairie.

Special thanks to this year’s growing list of sponsors, which includes Home Depot, The Opera House, Long & McQuade Musical Instruments, Ace Awards Inc., Toronto Sun and Toronto Star. There will be promotional draws for cool stuff the night of, including concert tickets, gift cards and the newest must-have phone and tablet, courtesy of Google (must we link … people can just Google Google, surely – ed).

In this year’s publisher challenge, The Globe and Mail has wagered $1,000 on its house band, Fun With Discipline, confident that it will end the Star’s Holy Joe & The Principles’ four-year reign as Newzapalooza champs. The Star’s John Cruickshank saw that bet, plunking down a grand on the Joes and a new Star act, On Demo (surely there’ll be bets from other publishers – ed).

Doors and the bar open at 7 p.m., and the show will begin at 8 p.m. Tickets are $25 and are available at the door or from members of the media bands taking part. We strongly encourage you to buy your ticket in advance. The Opera House is a kid-friendly venue, but minors must be accompanied by an adult.

For more information, visit www.newzapalooza.ca, or like and follow @Newzapalooza on Facebook and Twitter.