Music

Cadence Weapon Wins 2021 Polaris Music Prize for Parallel World

Cadence Weapon Wins 2021 Polaris Music Prize for Parallel World

The Edmonton-born, Toronto-based rapper won the Canadian award for the country’s best record of the year

Cadence Weapon

Cadence Weapon (Rene Johnston/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

Cadence Weapon (aka Rollie Pemberton) has won Canada’s Polaris Music Prize, which celebrates the country’s best record of the year, for his album Parallel World. (Disclaimer: Pemberton has contributed to Pitchfork). The award comes with a cash prize of $50,000 (Canadian). 

This was Cadence Weapon’s third time on the short list for the prize. While accepting the award, he said: “Justin Trudeau has done blackface so many times he doesn’t remember how many. That’s why I need to be making rap records that are political.”

Daniel Lanois, Yves Jarvis, Bernice, and Fiver with the Atlantic School of Spontaneous Composition were among those long list for this year’s prize, which was narrowed down in July. Runners-up from the Short List receive a cash prize of $3,000 (Canadian). Backxwash won for God Has Nothing to Do With This Leave Him Out Of It last year, following previous honorees Haviah Mighty, Jeremy Dutcher, and Lido Pimienta.

Polaris Music Prize 2021 Short List:

Leanne Betasamosake Simpson – Theory of Ice
Cadence Weapon – Parallel World
DijahSB – Head Above The Waters
Dominique Fils-Aimé – Three Little Words
Mustafa – When Smoke Rises
The OBGMs – The Ends
Klô Pelgag – Notre-Dame-des-Sept-Douleurs
TOBi – Elements Vol. 1
The Weather Station – Ignorance
Zoon – Bleached Wavves

Check out Pitchfork’s 2007 “Guest List” feature on Cadence Weapon.

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