2007 IBMA Hall Of Fame/Distinguished Achievement Awards

The IBMA AwardsDuring the rush to post the 2007 IBMA Award Nominees last week, we neglected to mention the announcement of two other awards which will be presented on October 4, 2007 at the International Bluegrass Music Awards show in Nashville.

These are not nominations which appear on the final ballot, but awards recipients which were determined in recent special election ballots by the professional membership of the IBMA.

2007 IBMA Hall Of Fame Inductees

  • Howard Watts
  • Carl Story

Watts, who performed as Cedric Rainwater, was the bass player in the classic 1945 edition of Bill Monroe & The Bluegrass Boys, and then became a member of Flatt & Scruggs’ Foggy Mountain Boys when they departed Monroe’s band in 1948. After leaving them in 1950, he worked with some of country music’s most notable entertainers, Hank Williams, Ray Price and Hank Snow, and recorded some stellar bluegrass sessions.

Story was a long-time bluegrass singer and songwriter who also did his time as a Bluegrass Boy in the early 1940s. After serving in the US Navy in WWII, he formed his own band, The Rambling Mountaineers, and wrote and recorded a string of bluegrass Gospel songs that are still being performed and recorded today, like He Will Set Your Fields On Fire and If You Don’t Love Your Neighbor (Then You Don’t Love God).

You can read more about both of our deserving 2007 Hall Of Fame Inductees on the IBMA web site.

Also worthy of note are several IBMA Distinguished Achievement Awards which were announced last week. This award is described by IBMA as…

…an honor which recognized individuals in the bluegrass music industry who have fostered the music’s image with developments that will broaden the genre’s recognition and accessibility.

This year’s recipients are:

  • Mike Auldridge
  • The Bluegrass Breakdown
  • Marko Cermak
  • Warren Hellman
  • Happy & Jane Traum

Auldridge is, of course, a legendary master of the resophonic guitar and was a founding member of Seldom Scene. Bluegrass Breakdown is the monthly print journal of the California Bluegrass Association which has been published continuously since 1975, now running to 48 pages.

Cermak is credited with sparking the popularity of the 5 string banjo in The Czech Republic, starting when they were still under Soviet domination. Hellman is recognized for his philanthropic support of bluegrass music through the annual Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival in San Francisco, which brings top acts to Golden Gate Park with no admission charge.

The Traums are the owners of Homespun Tapes which have produced hundreds of instructional tapes, CDs and DVDs helping bluegrass and acoustic musicians learn to become better players. Happy is a musician himself, and performed and recorded with a number of prominent artists.

More information about these distinguished individuals can also be found at ibma.org.

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.