I know the day's nearly over now, but while I'm between albums I thought I'd throw in a quick list post. The first of July is Canada Day, and tonight you've missed a performance in Trafalgar Square with the Tragically Hip, among others. It's as good an excuse as any to shoehorn in what I think is a fairly comprehensive list of Canadian acts featured in the series; I'm only counting lead credits and predominantly Canadian acts, so no All Saints or Dragonette. With apologies to Neil Young, Leonard Cohen, Barenaked Ladies, Alanis Morrisette and Holy F, here's who made the grade:
Men Without Hats: Now 1
They were from Montreal, so there's even a little bit of French in the song.
Bryan Adams: Now 6 (with Tina Turner), 34, 43
Not that surprising that he's the first Canadian I've found on more than one Now album (I'm counting 'It's Only Love' as one of his), though his small total number of appearances is a bit of a surprise. Even if you also add his lead vocal of Chicane's 'Don't Give Up', his biggest hit is conspicuous by its absence. I'm not complaining.
Glass Tiger: Now 20
It seems a long gap, but I can't think of any Canucks in the other 1980s volumes at all, so this is the surprising third appearance for the nation. The largely forgotten Number 33 hit 'My Town' features an uncredited Rod Stewart, which might be why it's there.
kd lang: Now 24
I'm listing her ahead of the other Canadian act on Now 24 on alphabetical order, though she also pops up on Now 23 duetting with Roy Orbison. Unsurprisingly she's represented by her big solo hit 'Constant Craving'.
Snow: Now 24
Unusually for a reggae-based rapper, he's a white guy from Canada, hence the stage name. Though he did have other charting singles, he gets a mention here from 'Informer', which landed in the middle of the all-reggae Top 3 in Spring 1993.
Crash Test Dummies: Now 29
The only act other than XTC to have a hit with an XTC song, though that's not what they feature on here. Mmmm, I wonder if you can guess which of their songs it is?
Céline Dion: Now 29
She outdoes Bryan Adams by having two million-selling Number One singles that aren't on Now albums. Instead her only showing is 'The Power Of Love', ironically a cover of another million-selling chart-topper that didn't make it to the Now series.
Shania Twain: Now 39, 44, 45, 46
Had you forgotten she was Canadian? I believe these songs would have fallen foul of the protectionist Can Con rules, as they were co-written and produced by her then-husband "Mutt" Lange, who is from the US. A comeback album is due in 2013 apparently.
Bran Van 3000: Now 44
The collective who brought us 'Drinking In LA', perhaps the only Top 3 hit to use the word "Bupkiss". Like several other acts mentioned here, they did have another hit (the Number 40 'Astounded') but were only noticed this once.
Nelly Furtado: Now 48, 50, 64, 65, 66
The most featured Canadian I can find, even ignoring her vocal of Timbaland's 'Give It To Me'. Her return to English-language recording in 2012 didn't add to her tally though.
Sum 41: Now 50, 51
Another of the less obviously Canadian acts to show up. Lead singer Deryck Whibley beats his ex-wife to the series, though her chart career was much longer.
Nickelback: Now 51, 56, 69
Perhaps not the greatest advert for the nation's musical creativity. But all three of their features are Top 10 hits; 'Someday' from 2003 is the one you might be struggling to remember.
Avril Lavigne: Now 67, 68
As previously noted, the former Mrs Whibley is quite a late arrival, five years on from her first hit. It took the Sony/BMG merger and the closure of the Hits series to get her on here, with the endlessly annoying 'Girlfriend' and its power-ballad follow-up.
Feist: Now 68
In singles chart terms, a genuine one-hit wonder thanks to a certain advert.
Michael Bublé: Now 74, 77
Not an obvious Now act, but he obviously became so big with radio programmers that his first Top 10 hit couldn't be ignored. Only his upbeat singles seem to attract Box Music's attention though.
Justin Bieber: Now 76, 82
You knew this was coming. He actually doubles up on 76, duetting with Sean Kingston and then having his own hit with 'Baby' (which also features Ludacris)
K'Naan: Now 76
Also a one-hit wonder in a solo capacity (he's on a Number 40 hit by Keane), with this World Cup anthem. It wouldn't have occurred to me to pick a Canadian for that job, but maybe that's the point.
Drake: Now 81
Yes, it's Drake Featuring Rihanna, but it's very much his single from his album.
Carly Ray Jepsen: Now 82
Thanks to the aforementioned Mr. Bieber, the most recent debutant from the land of the maple leaf. And 'Good Time' by her and Owl City appears on Now 83, which is the most recent representation to date. Mind you, the Now 85 tracklisting is due soon, so we could be getting another dose of Bublé.
I can promise now, I won't be listing all the American acts on Thursday.