The Saskatchewan Songwriter Challenge

logo-saskmusicOn July 15-17, 2016, SaskMusic produced its second Canadian Songwriter Challenge. Nine participants took part in the three-day retreat that included group songwriting sessions, music and business workshops, as well as a publishing 101 presentation. The event was held at The Sound Stage in Regina, Saskatchewan, followed by recording and listening sessions with engineer Jason Plumb at CBC Studio One.

Mentor and BreakOut West event coordinator Roland Deschambault led the challenge and worked with each group by offering advice and feedback to help with the creative process. Business development session were help as well. Topics discussed included business of songwriting, music publishing, intellectual property, and split sheets.

Each group worked with producer/engineer Jason Plumb at CBC Studio One. All demos were recorded live off the floor and quickly mixed by Jason. A listening session and closing statements by Roland Deschambault and SaskMusic completed the three-day Songwriting Challenge.

Participants (2016)


  • Joel Henderson (poornamelessboy)
  • Wanda Gronhovd
  • Shelby Almasi
  • Ross Neilsen
  • Eric Taylor
  • Lucas Johner
  • Michael Lander
  • Allyson James – Loth (Rosie & the Riveters)
  • Alex Barabe – ALEXANDRA


  • Roland Deschambault (BreakOut West)

Songs Recorded at Challenge (2016)

Gallery (2016)

Feedback (2016)

“I really appreciated the opportunity to be creative with other songwriters that I may not have written with otherwise. The CCMIA Songwriting Challenge was also a great networking opportunity and a chance to grow as a songwriter and I would highly recommend this retreat to anyone looking to expand their creative process.”
– Allyson Reigh, Rosie & the Riveters, participants

“The CCMIA Songwriting Challenge was an incredibly fun and educational weekend. It provided me with the opportunity to meet and learn from so many talented artists and left me feeling inspired and motivated to continue improving my craft.”
– Shelby Alamasi, participants