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Two Abbotsford artists look to amplify their music with B.C. grant

B.C. government’s financial contribution helps foster talent and launch careers
Becca Hess (left), award-winning country artist from Abbotsford (submitted photo); Kristin Witko, mixed-genre artist from Abbotsford (Simon Bridgefoot photo)

Two singer-songwriters from Abbotsford have received funding from the province to help with their musical aspirations.

Becca Hess and Kristin Witko have each received $8,000 for recording, filming music videos and marketing their music, as part of the Career Development Program’s Music and Sound Recording grant funded through Creative BC’s Amplify BC organization and the B.C. government.

Hess has garnered awards for her music in the past year, including winning Country Artist of the Year at the 2023 Fraser Valley Music Awards, as well as an award for Excellence by an Indigenous Artist.

Notably, Hess has performed at Rockin’ River Music Fest in Merritt and has recorded a song with fellow Canadian country artist George Canyon. Locally, she headlined the 2023 Canada Day show at Rotary Stadium in Abbotsford.

“Thanks to Creative BC’s financial support, I am returning to Studio Downe Under in Abbotsford with a room full of B.C.’s best musicians to record two brand new radio-ready singles this month,” Hess told The Abbotsford News.

Witko has also made waves in their genre, described as a mix of classic rock, early 4AD goth and pop – and along the way has garnered a dedicated fan base, including listeners who have had Witko’s signature tattooed.

“Getting this funding makes releasing my new album possible, period,” Witko said. “It’s hard to overstate its importance.”

The two Abbotsford artists join a group of 103 other aspiring artists in B.C. to receive grant funding.

READ MORE: PHOTOS: Thousands flock to downtown Abbotsford for Canada Day parade

The BC Music Fund was established in 2016, and then transitioned to Amplify BC in 2018. In 2023, the province announced $42 million in funding for the creative sector, including $22.5 million to Amplify BC.

About the Author: Ryleigh Mulvihill

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