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Donny Parenteau
Fri, Jun 26
Casino Lethbridge - Lethbridge


Written by:  Irene Carroll, Public and Media Relations


Donny Parenteau knows WHAT IT TAKES to be successful in the Canadian Country Music Industry.  Donny is a ”full circle story” that film makers crave while his fans applaud for more.


Born and raised in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, Donny raised a bow to the fiddle in 1981.   Having mastered the intricate technique of this instrument through self-taught methods would be enough for most performers – not Donny.  His musical versatility expanded to also playing the mandolin, acoustic and electric guitar, as well as the unique double neck mando-caster/electric guitar.  With his superior vocal ability added to the mix, and easy transition from Country Classics to Blues to Easy Rock, Donny hit the touring road in 1991 with none other than the tall, smiling Texan, Country Music Great, Neal McCoy


Donny, along with being one of the most talented guys I’ve ever worked with (not to mention that I’ve ever heard), is a great guy with a big heart, lots of personality and a passion for music you very seldom find."


Neal McCoy


Donny’s 12 year adventure with Neal McCoy had him sharing front and center stage, with country legends and music icons, Merle Haggard, Buck Owens, George Jones, Charlie Pride, Loretta Lynn, Charlie Daniels, Hank Williams JR, Reba McEntire, Garth Brooks, Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, and Shania Twain to name a few. Appearing with Neal, on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Grand Ole Opry, Crook and Chase, Nashville Now, and Prime Time Country, Donny was decorated with what he calls a "Masters Degree in Entertaining" – a country musical tour adventure career that many dream of, and few ever live.


Since there’s no place like home, especially when home is Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, Donny left Nashville, the touring band and family he knew and returned to where it all began to begin his solo career in 2003.  Putting pen to paper, music was effortlessly created for not one but two albums. Could it get any better? Indeed!


From 2003 to 2006, Donny was awarded 7 Saskatchewan Country Music Association Awards for his writing and performing accomplishments; in conjunction with those honours, Donny was nominated at the 2005 Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards for “Producer of the Year”, only to be topped by being nominated at the 2006 Canadian Country Music Association Awards for ‘Fiddle Player of the Year’.  Donny’s third CD, What It Takes co-produced by Steve Fox launched to tremendous Canadian and US appeal and music reviews in October 2006.


In 2007, while Saskatchewan owns the Music Awards their performing son, Donny Parenteau continued to “please” and astound his hometown fans.  With an unprecedented 18 Music Nominations to his credit from April 2007 to December 2007.  Donny is the highest nominated musician of any musical genre in Canada over a 9 month period.  His “guts to glory” story continues to awe as well as inspire.


With a record breaking 10, 2007 Saskatchewan Country Music Association Award nominations for What It Takes, including: Fans Choice Entertainer, Male Vocalist, Song of the Year (Country Calling Me with Anthony Kelly), Single of the Year (Country Calling Me), Album of the Year (What It Takes), Aboriginal Artist,  All-Star Band (Fiddle), All-Star Band (Specialty), Back Up Band, and Record Producer of the Year with Steve Fox, Donny was Awarded 5 of those 10 nominations, including:  Aboriginal Artist of the Year; All-Star Band (Fiddle); All-Star Band (Specialty); Back Up Band and Record Producer of the Year with Steve Fox.


Donny went to Regina, for the Canadian Country Music Awards in September.  nominated for the Chevy Rising Star Award, and selected as 1 of the top 24 Songwriters across Canada to showcase during the CCMA’s prestigious Songwriters’ Café, Donny took stage at the Casino Regina Show Lounge and delighted fans old and new.  The CCMA Industry Brunch and Awards is a “trade only” event and once again, Donny took centre stage with his entire band.   His rendition of “Orange Blossom Special” had over 400 people tapping their toes, while the introduction and performance of his second song, “Postmarked Heaven” had attendees wiping tears from their eyes.


Live performances continued for Saskatchewan Music Week, CBC Radio Saskatchewan, and as a side man for Paul Brandt’s spontaneous hotel lobby performance.  Taking centre stage at the Ole Publishing Party, Donny had his fiddle “scream” for musicians and industry executives in attendance.


Returning from the CCMAs, Donny learned he, and WHAT IT TAKES was nominated for 2 Western Canadian Music Awards:  Outstanding Aboriginal Recording of the Year, and Outstanding Country Recording of the Year.  In addition to those accolades additional excitement occurred when Donny was contacted and told he had been nominated for 5 Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards.  These 5 nominations include: Best Song Single (Father Time); Best Producer / Engineer; Best Songwriter; Best Country Album; and Best Album of the Year.  Donny’s wins of Best Song Single and Best Producer / Engineer was tremendous validation of this artist’s combined talents.


As recent as February 2008, Donny for a second consecutive year, continues to be touted as Saskatchewan’s highest nominated artist receiving 9 SCMA nods.  The real prize though was his first ever Juno nomination for Aboriginal Recording of the Year.


One short week later, the 2008 Saskatchewan Country Music Awards occurred in Prince Albert, with Donny accepting 7 Awards of the 9 he was nominated for:  Fans Choice of the Year / Male Artist of the Year / Single of the Year – Postmarked Heaven / Song of the Year (Awarded to the Composer)  Postmarked Heaven, Donny Parenteau & Gil Grand / Aboriginal Artist of the Year / All Star Band of the Year (Fiddle) / Back Up Band of the Year.  In addition to Donny’s SCMA Award accolades he was also appointed to the Director position of the Prince Albert chapter of the Saskatchewan Country Music Association.


In 1 year, from April 2007 to April 2008, Donny Parenteau has demonstrated that hard work does pay off with 28 music nominations to his credit in the music award shows that he qualified for.  In 1 year, Donny took home 14 music awardsin various categories without record labels, booking agents or video protocols often assumed in the music industry.


Whether song writing, performing or receiving well-deserved nominations or winning awards, DONNY PARENTEAU continues to increase his fan base and knows WHAT IT TAKES to be successful in the Canadian Country Music Industry. 


His music future will hold much of the same if not more. 


Casino Lethbridge   -   Website
3756 2 Avenue South
T1J 4Y9
Country: ca

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