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Arcade Fire wins Grammy: Three of seven are grads

February 15, 2011
By Howard Bokser

Despite being up against music-industry heavyweights Eminem, Lady Gaga and Katy Perry – plus Record of the Year winner Lady Antebellum – Montreal-based indie group Arcade Fire captured Album of the Year honours on February 13 at the 53rd annual Grammy Awards ceremony in Los Angeles.

The group won for its third album, The Suburbs.

The seven-member Arcade Fire, fronted by lead vocalist and songwriter Win Butler, features three Concordia alumni: Régine Chassagne, BA (Communication Studies) ’98, a multi-instrumentalist and singer; Richard Reed Parry, BFA (Electroacoustic Studies) ’03, also a multi-instrumentalist and singer; and violinist Sarah Neufeld, BFA (Electroacoustic Studies) ’03.

Band members clearly seemed surprised by the victory and gave a shout-out to the city where they got together.

“Merci to Montreal, Quebec, for taking us in, giving us a home and a place to be in a band,” Butler said after accepting the award. Chassagne, who is married to Butler, also acknowledged her roots. “Merci Montréal! Merci tout le monde au Québec,” she said.

In 2006, Chassagne was interviewed for a Concordia University Magazine article called “Gang of Rockers” that highlighted Concordia grads in the burgeoning Montreal indie-rock scene. She praised her former Concordia professor and music instructor Iain Cook, BA (Communication Studies) ’93, MA (Media Studies) ’97. “There’s nothing better for a student than to have an inspired teacher,” Chassagne said.

This video, directed by Charlie Lightning, was recorded Live at Hackney Empire, London July 7th, 2010.

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