2023 IBMA Momentum Award winners announced

Crying Uncle performs during the 2023 Momentum Award presentations – photo © Frank Baker

There’s a cure for anyone who thinks bluegrass is on the verge of fading or becoming extinct: just attend the IBMA World of Bluegrass annual Momentum Awards luncheon in Raleigh.

This year’s pool of nominees who are artists or business partners in the early years of their careers, was especially broad and deep, providing plenty of optimism about the state of bluegrass in the coming years.

The winners included:

  • Momentum Band of the Year: Crying Uncle Bluegrass Band, from California. These young pickers have deep roots in World of Bluegrass, moving on from the youth all-stars to regulars on the festival circuit.
  • Momentum Vocalist of the Year: Carley Arrowood-Thrailkill, an artist on the Mountain Home label. The win came on her 27th birthday. Six years ago, on her 21st birthday, she was chosen as instrumentalist of the year.
  • Momentum Instrumentalist of the Year (two winners): Maddie Dalton, bass player for Sister Sadie; Gaven Largent, a multi-instrumentalist for East Nash Grass and Dan Tyminski.
  • Momentum Industry Involvement: Matt Hutchinson, host and producer of the Bluegrass Jam Along Podcast.
  • Momentum Mentor of the Year: Dan Boner, director of Bluegrass, Old-Time and Roots Music Studies at East Tennessee State University. He is also chairman of IBMA’s board of directors.

Time marches on incessantly, but the future, indeed, looks bright.

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About the Author

David Morris

David Morris, an award-winning songwriter and journalist, has written for Bluegrass Today since its inception. He joined its predecessor, The Bluegrass Blog, in 2010. His 40-year career in journalism included more than 13 years with The Associated Press, a stint as chief White House correspondent for Bloomberg News, and several top editing jobs in Washington, D.C. He is a life member of IBMA and the DC Bluegrass Union. He and co-writers won the bluegrass category in the Chris Austin Songwriting Contest at MerleFest in 2015.