2020 Hazel Dickens Song Contest winners announced

The DC Bluegrass Union, who promote bluegrass music in the greater capitol region, have announced the winners in their Hazel Dickens Song Contest for this year. The annual competition is held in honor of Dickens, a former DC resident whose songwriting and singing made a big impact on bluegrass and old time music in the 20th century. Proceeds from the contest support the mission of the Union, and their goal of spreading bluegrass through live performance and educational efforts.

This year’s winners contain a number of names that will be familiar to those who follow bluegrass songwriting.

And the 2020 recipients are:

  1. God Leaves the Light On by David Morris of Gaithersburg, MD (Co-writers: Donna Ulisse and Dawn Kenney)
  2. Dancing in the Rain by Carly Arrowood of Union Mills, NC
  3. Give me Grace by Jane Fallon of Dunedin, FL

Honorable mentions were also awarded to:

  • Harvester by John Bolten, Catonsville MD
  • Allegheny Town by Missy Raines, Nashville TN
  • You Come Around by Kris Grainger, Salem OR

Judging the 2020 competition, which started last fall, were Milan Miller, Rick Lang and Mary Doub.

The top three places receive a cash prize; $500 for 1st place, $250 for 2nd, and $100 for 3rd.

The DCBU has placed the audio files submitted for the three winning songs on their web site, to give bluegrass fans – and artists looking for material – a chance to hear them. 

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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.