UXBRIDGE: It has been an exciting last few months for local country music star Leah Daniels.
In early May, she was named the 2016 FACTOR Breakthrough Artist of the Year winner at the Canadian Radio Music Awards in Toronto.
“It was crazy because I had no idea that I was up for the award,” Ms. Daniels said. “When they were announcing the winner, they were doing a little spiel about the person and I was thinking ‘that sounds like me.’”
She has also been nominated for five Country Music Association of Ontario (CMAO) awards, including Female Artist of the Year, Single of the Year, Album of the Year, Music Video of the Year and Songwriter of the Year.
“That was another surprise. It is a real honour because the people that pick those awards are my peers, performers that I respect,” Ms. Daniels said.
The CMAO awards will be held on Monday, May 30. As well, Ms. Daniels also released a new music video for her song “Your Kiss is Killing Me” on CMT on Saturday, May 14.
“It was a song that I wrote with Karen Kosowski. What I love about it is that it has so many emotions to it. The song is about the battle between your heart and your head and we play on that in the video,” she said.
Ms. Daniels will also be performing in Kitchener on Saturday, July 9 for CMT Music Fest.
“It’s exciting for me, because it is close to home, so it is nice to have friends and family be able to attend,” she said.
Ms. Daniels grew up on a farm in Uxbridge. She told The Standard that she was introduced to music by her uncle Owen Herrell and grandfather Edgar Herrell.
“My grandpa and uncle were always playing music. My grandpa loved country music and my uncle would always be playing rock so those ended up to be my influences,” she said.
Ms. Daniels had her first band in high school, which consisted of her and her three brothers.
“Growing up, Uxbridge was a great town and there were always many options to perform in festivals and other events,” she said.
She told The Standard that her favourite performance memory is when she took the stage at the Uxbridge Music Hall this past November, to launch her first album, titled What It Feels Like.
“I grew up on that stage, so it was special to go back and have my family and friends and even some of my old teachers in attendance,” Ms. Daniels said.
She also added that she was very fortunate to have grown up in Uxbridge.
“The whole town has been so supportive of me over the years. I have been fortunate enough that a lot of my music videos have been filmed in Uxbridge or in the nearby area.”
Ms. Daniels will be performing next in Uxbridge on Saturday, July 16 for the annual Bonner Boys Ribfest in Elgin Park.