40. The Grapes Of Wrath – “All The Things I Wasn’t”
This melancholy, finger-picked ballad by the Vancouver folk-rockers was deservedly their biggest hit and soundtracked countless pity parties when it came out on the late-80s.

 

 

39. Rascalz ft. Kardinal Offishall, Thurst, Checkmate, and Choclair – “Northern Touch”
Frustrated by the poor treatment that Canada’s hip-hop scene was receiving at home, Vancouver rap group The Rascalz assembled a superstar team of fellow Canadian artists to celebrate the talent and resilience of the domestic scene. The resulting track, 1998’s “Northern Touch,” was successful both as a rallying cry and a single. It helped establish Canadian hip-hop as a creative and commercial force and it became the country’s most successful hip-hop single since The Dream Warrior’s “My Definition of a Boombastic Jazz Style” in 1991.

 

 

38. Stars – “Elevator Love Letter”
Stars’s cinematic soft revolution first ignited with this beautiful ballad about star-crossed love and quarter life crises as sung by the band’s boy-girl co-lead singers.

 

 

37. Deadmau5 – “Ghosts N Stuff”
For a long time, Joel “Deadmau5” Zimmerman was dismissed by the electronic cognoscenti, his Maus head seen as a gimmick to get bros onto the dancefloor. “Ghosts n Stuff” was his chance to prove himself as a mask-less producer and he scored with this instantly iconic EDM track that mixes a distorted vocal with buzzy synths and an infectiously dirty beat.

 

 

36. Anne Murray – “Snowbird”
Many artists have covered Canadian Gene MacLellan’s most famous song, including Elvis, Loretta Lynn, Bing Crosby, and Burl Ives. But it was Anne Murray’s sweetly earnest take on the tune in 1970 that made “Snowbird” a hit and an enduring classic. It was one of the first songs inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame.

 

 

35. Carly Rae Jepsen – “Call Me Maybe”
If Carly Rae winds up a one-hit wonder, at least the former “Canadian Idol” also-ran’s hit was this wondrous piece of pure pop perfection that was so relatable it pretty much took over popular culture for months.

 

 

34. Kardinal Offishall – “BaKardi Slang”
Toronto often doubles as Anycity, USA in TV and film and used to be similarly disguised in Toronto hip-hop for fear hometown pride might make it harder to crossover south of the border. But then Kardi’s Tdot anthem arrived, proudly describing the ins and outs of local slang and reminding rappers that it’s about both where you’re from and where you’re at.

 

 

33. Stan Rogers – “Northwest Passages”
Two years before his tragic and untimely death, Hamilton, Ontario’s folk phenom released this haunting exploration of the Canadian landscape and the Canadian psyche. Prime Minister Stephen Harper once called “Northwest Passage” an “unofficial Canadian anthem” in a pro-Mackenzie Pipeline speech, but let’s not hold that against the poor song.

http://www.pm.gc.ca/eng/news/2006/08/17/call-north

 

 

32. Weakerthans – “Diagnosis”
Winnipeg’s Weakerthans pack a hell of a lot of hooks and heartbreak into two and a half minutes in this perfect folk punk rock single from the band’s 1997 debut album, “Fallow.”

 

 

31. The Tragically Hip – “Courage”
The third single from The Hip’s 1992 album, “Fully Completely,” was a top 10 hit in Canada and a top 20 hit stateside. Which likely makes it the most successful rock song that quotes an entire passage from a literary novel. The entire “There’s not simple explanation…” verse is lifted directly from Canadian novelist Hugh MacLennan’s The Watch That Ends The Night, hence the full name of the song, “Courage (For Hugh MacLennan).”

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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