Home Feature We asked ChatGPT to recommend some Canadian folk artists. Here’s who...

We asked ChatGPT to recommend some Canadian folk artists. Here’s who it recommended


Chances are, you’ve heard of ChatGPT by now.

For the uninitiated, you might describe it as a cross between Google, Siri and an online chat room. Officially, it’s “a language model, designed to assist users in generating human-like text based on the input provided to me” (that’s how it described itself to me).

You can ask it to write letters, news articles, plays computer code – you name it really. Or you can just ask it for information, and it will answer you like a real person instead of spitting out a list of websites you can consult like Google and Siri do.

It’s a little hit and miss on the accuracy front. I asked it to tell me everything it knew about the Freedom Convoy, and it told me it was a global protest related to issues such as gas prices and farmer’s rights.

Needless to say, people have been having fun trying it out and seeing what it can do. And that includes us.

We decided to ask ChatGPT to recommend some emerging Canadian folk artists, and we regenerated the response five times to see how many it could name. By that point it was repeating itself quite a bit.

I wouldn’t describe any of these artists as truly “emerging.” But the “bot” has decent taste in music.

Here’s what it came up with. What follows was entirely written by the AI. Folks, you can officially credit ChatGPT in your press kits.

  1. Iskwé: Hailing from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Iskwé is a singer-songwriter and producer whose music blends elements of soul, trip-hop, and indigenous music. Her powerful vocals and thought-provoking lyrics make her a must-listen for fans of socially conscious music.
  2. Basia Bulat: Based in Toronto, Basia Bulat is a singer-songwriter who draws inspiration from traditional folk, country, and pop music. Her distinctive voice and intricate guitar work have earned her critical acclaim and a devoted fanbase.
  3. Leif Vollebekk: Originally from Ottawa, Leif Vollebekk is a singer-songwriter who blends elements of folk, rock, and jazz in his music. His introspective lyrics and haunting voice have earned him comparisons to greats like Leonard Cohen and Nick Drake.
  4. William Prince: From Manitoba, William Prince is a singer-songwriter who draws on his indigenous heritage to create music that is both personal and universal. His soulful voice and introspective lyrics make him one of the most exciting new voices in Canadian folk music.
  5. Joni Mitchell: Although not exactly an “emerging” artist, Joni Mitchell is a legendary Canadian singer-songwriter who is often cited as one of the greatest musicians of all time. Her unique voice and innovative style have inspired countless musicians, and her music continues to be a source of inspiration for new generations of folk artists.
  6. Aviva Chernick: A Montreal-based singer and multi-instrumentalist whose music blends traditional Jewish melodies with contemporary folk and world music influences.
  7. Jay Gilday: A Yellowknife-based artist who blends modern songwriting with the storytelling traditions of the north, weaving together elements of folk, rock, and blues.
  8. The Small Glories: A Winnipeg-based duo consisting of Cara Luft and JD Edwards, who craft timeless folk songs with tight harmonies and dynamic musical arrangements.
  9. Luyando: A Toronto-based artist who combines traditional African rhythms with elements of soul, R&B, and hip-hop to create a unique sound that reflects her global experiences and cultural heritage.
  10. The East Pointers: This trio from Prince Edward Island mixes traditional Celtic music with contemporary folk influences to create a sound that is both classic and modern.
  11. The Secret Sisters: Hailing from Toronto, this female duo is known for their tight harmonies and old-school country sound that harkens back to the days of Patsy Cline and Loretta Lynn.
  12. Old Man Luedecke: A banjo player and singer-songwriter from Nova Scotia, Old Man Luedecke’s music is rooted in traditional folk and bluegrass, but also incorporates elements of pop, rock, and country.
  13. Julian Taylor: With a soulful voice and captivating stage presence, Julian Taylor is a rising star in the Canadian folk scene. His unique blend of blues, roots, and folk music has earned him a growing fanbase and critical acclaim.
  14. Terra Lightfoot: With a powerful voice and dynamic stage presence, Terra Lightfoot is a standout performer in the Canadian folk scene. Her music blends roots, soul, and rock in a way that is both powerful and heartfelt.
  15. Pharis and Jason Romero: This husband-and-wife duo creates beautiful traditional and original folk music that is both authentic and timeless. Their skilled instrumentation and soulful harmonies make them a must-see for any folk music lover.
  16. The Dead South: This Regina-based band creates a unique blend of bluegrass, folk, and old-time music that is both toe-tapping and thought-provoking. Their high-energy live shows are a must-see for any fan of the genre.
  17. Michael Kaeshammer: A pianist and singer-songwriter based in Vancouver, Michael Kaeshammer is known for his dynamic live shows and eclectic musical style. He combines elements of jazz, blues, and classical music with his own original songwriting to create a sound that is both energetic and soulful.
  18. Rose Cousins: A singer-songwriter based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Rose Cousins is known for her powerful and emotive voice. Her music is rooted in the folk tradition, but also incorporates elements of pop, country, and rock, creating a unique and captivating sound.
  19. Aidan Knight: A singer-songwriter based in Victoria, British Columbia, Aidan Knight is known for his introspective lyrics and delicate finger picking. His music is characterized by its intimacy and honesty, exploring themes of love, loss, and self-discovery.

Correction: We previously referred to ChatGPT as ChatCGP because… well…we don’t know why. It’s like having a wrong song lyric stuck in your head.


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