ABOUT

Richard Flohil heads a small, but extremely busy, music publicity and promotion company. After more than five decades of work in the music industry in Canada, he is understandably quite well known. Despite that, some people want to know more about him.


RESUME

1934 Born in the UK (Dutch and English/Gernan/Jewish parents)
Private school education
1950-1953 Trainee apprentice reporter, Yorkshire Evening Press
1954 Winner: Westminster Press Junior Reporter of the Year
1954 Feature writer: Bradford Telegraph & Argus, Yorkshire Observer; chief reporter, Selby Gazette & Herald
1957 First publicity work: John Barry Seven
Emigrated to Canada, April
1957-1965 Editor, Canadian Woodworker, Electrical Contracting & Maintenance, Furniture & Furnishings Daily, Industrial Sales Promotion, freelance trade paper writing
1965-1970 Partner: Concept Associates Public Relations (clients included NCR Business Machinery, Chubb Safe, Mariposa Folk Festival)
1970 Formed Richard Flohil & Associates
1980-1997 Founding Editor, review editor, feature writer, The Record
2002-2007 Editor, writer, Applaud! magazine

Richard Flohil & Associates handles publicity/PR for a variety of music industry clients, including record companies, events, concert tours, individual artists. It also handles concert promotions and club gigs, and Flohil continues to undertake writing and editing work. Among dozens of clients over more than 50 years, one could include the following:

Record company publicity: Stony Plain Records, NorthernBlues/Borealis Records (Lightfoot tribute project), Isadora Records (Serena Ryder), Alert Records (Roxanne Potvin)

Concert promotions: Muddy Waters, Ry Cooder, Miles Davis, Stephane Grappelli, Benny Goodman, John Prine, k.d. Lang, B.B. King, Bobby “Blue” Bland, Ani DiFranco, Leon Rednone and countless others.

Tour publicity: Nana Mouskouri, George Martin, Eric Idle, Billy Connolly, David Crosby, Ian Tyson, Martyn Joseph, Stacey Earle & Mark Stuart, Matt Andersen, Kate Reid

Public relations clients: Canadian Country Music Association, 1990-2000

Events: Southern Comfort Blues Festival, 1990-1993, JVC Jazz Festival 1996-2001, Mariposa Folk Festival (1965-1962, 1988-1992), CMW 2000, 2001, 2002,Watershed Festivals 1999-02

Previous publicity clients: k.d. lang, Colin James, The Irish Descendants, Laura Smith, Loreena McKennitt (25 years), Treasa Levasseur, James Keelaghan, Downchild Blues Band (39 years), Matt Andersen, David Baxter, The Parachute Club, Jadea Kelly, Serena Ryder, Andrea Ramolo and Cindy Doire (Scarlett Jane), Roxanne Potvin, Justin Rutledge and countless others.

Memberships: Toronto Blues Society, North American Folk Alliance, Folk Music Ontario, SOCAN, CARAS.

Giving at the office: Member of Juno Awards blues and roots/traditional committees, previous board member of Folk Music Ontario, former board member of Toronto Blues Society (currently member of programming committee), benefits arranged for Unison.

Awards:

1990: Special Achievement Award, Casby Music Award
1999: Golden Porcupine For Lifetime Achievement Award
2005: Blues Booster Award, Toronto Blues Society
2006: Estelle Klein Award, Folk Music Ontario
2009: Special Achievement Award, SOCAN
2010: Spirit of Folk Award, Folk Alliance International
2010: Keeping the Blues Alive Publicist of the Year Award, Blues Foundation, Memphis, Tennessee
2016: Unsung Hero Award, Canadian Independent Music Association
2017 : Hall of Fame, Mariposa Folk Festival

There’s no quick way to sum up so much – and such varied – work and experience. Flohil has also contributed sleeve notes to more than 100 albums/CDs released in Canada and/or the United States; written dozens of bios for artists; been a guest lecturer both at Trebas and, more frequently, the Harris Institute for the Arts; acted as keynote speaker/panelist at dozens of industry events from Vancouver to St. John’s. He was, briefly, a radio DJ (Q107 Toronto, until he played an Anne Murray record), and is frequently heard/seen on radio and TV as an “expert” with a quick sound-bite. With graphic designer Michael Wrycraft, he has presented an interactive “trivia quiz and game show” at folk festivals in Canada, and, in 2005, the United States. As an ongoing resource, he has 7,000 vinyl and CD recordings in his living room, his office, the bedroom, and the bathroom….

“Not bad, eh?” Flohil said, with some surprise, summing up more than 50 years of hard labour….

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