True North Records. Major independent company founded in 1969 in Toronto by Bernie Finkelstein (b Toronto 12 Aug 1944). Beginning with the album Bruce Cockburn
, by 2013 True North Records had released more than 500 albums, and its artists had earned 40 Juno Awards and 37 gold and platinum records. As a leading figure in the Canadian music industry, Finkelstein began his career as manager 1966-7 of the Paupers
and 1967-9 of Kensington Market. After established True North Records, Finkelstein in partnership 1972-81 with Bernie Fiedler, managed the careers of Abramson, Cockburn, McLauchlan, and Dan Hill
. True North also represented Bruce Cockburn
, Murray McLauchlan
, Ronney Abramson, Doug Cameron, Luke Gibson, Gregory Hoskins and the Stickpeople, Johnny MacLeod, John Mills-Cockell
, Mills-Cockell's band Syrinx, the US guitarist and folksinger David Rea, Barney Bentall, Legendary Hearts and Rough Trade
. Gene Martynec, formerly of Kensington Market
, produced many early True North recordings and pianist and composer Jon Goldsmith also worked with the company. More recently, The True North catalogue includes Blackie & The Rodeo Kings
, Colin Linden
, Tom Wilson, 54-40, Joel Kroeker, Rheostatics
, and Randy Bachman
True North releases were distributed by Sony Music and today Universal Music Canada (formerly MCA Records Canada) distributes their products. In 2007, Linus Entertainment acquired True North Records and Finkelstein maintained his role as Chairman and some management of the company artists.
Finkelstein was inducted to the Juno's Hall Of Fame in 2006 when he received the Juno Special Achievement Award. He was also invested as a member of the Order of Canada in 2007.
Farrell, David. 'Bernie Finkelstein True North chief,' Record Week, 25 Oct, 1 Nov 1976
Finkelstein, Bernie. True North: A Life Inside the Music Business. 2012
Flohil, Richard. 'Finkelstein's true northern roots,' The Record, vol 10, 29 Oct 1990
Scrivener, Leslie. 'Mentor to pop musicians,' Toronto Star, 12 Aug 1984
Waxman, Ken. 'Bernie Finkelstein helps turn Canadian folk singers into folk heroes,' (Toronto Star) The City, 25 Jun 1978
Links to Other Sites
Mediazoic: True North Records
A profile of True North Records from the Mediazoic website.
New book captures early days of Canada's music biz
See a CTV interview with music icon Bernie Finkelstein, founder of of True North Records, Canada's oldest and longest running indie record label.