IBMA announces Momentum Awards nominees

ibmaThe International Bluegrass Music Association has announced the nominees for their Momentum Awards, a special honor designed to recognize artists and bluegrass professionals during the early stages of their careers. From these lists of finalists, a committee of experts will select the winners, who will be announced during an awards luncheon at the organization’s World of Bluegrass convention on October 1 in Raleigh, NC.

And the nominees are:

Performance Award nominees, Instrumentalists (final committee will select 3)

  • Mike Barnett (fiddle)
  • Casey Campbell (mandolin)
  • Dominick Leslie (mandolin)
  • Janice Martin (banjo)
  • Cory Piatt (mandolin)
  • Andrew Rigney (guitar)
  • Zeb Snyder (guitar)
  • Jake Stargel (guitar)
  • Cory Walker (banjo)

Performance Award nominees, Vocalist (final committee to select 1)

  • Savannah Church (The Church Sisters)
  • Jesse Gregory (Jesse Gregory & Faultline)
  • Sarah Harris (Trinity River Band)
  • Mo Pitney
  • Molly Tuttle (Molly Tuttle Trio)

Performance Award nominees, Band (final Committee to select 1):

  • Barefoot Movement
  • The Lil’ Smokies
  • Meyerband
  • The Snyder Family
  • Vickie Vaughn Band

Industry Involvement Award nominees, Media/Artisan/Business/General

  • Jamie Deering – Deering Banjos
  • Cory Hemilright – Outer Banks Bluegrass Festival
  • Megan McNair – Sugar Hill Records
  • Ashlee Jean Trott – Music City Roots/Bluegrass Underground
  • Aaron Youngberg – Swing Fingers Studio

Nominees for Festival/Event/Venue

  • Bluegrass Situation showcases at Bonaroo & Americana Music Association
  • Colonial Theater, Balsam Range monthly concert series – Canton, NC
  • ISIS Music Hall – Asheville, NC
  • Redwing Roots – Mount Solon, VA
  • The Festy – Roseland, VA

Mentor Award (given to a bluegrass professional who has made a significant impact on the lives and careers of newcomers to the bluegrass industry):

  • Jim Lauderdale
  • Stephen Mougin
  • Ricky Skaggs
  • Tim Surrett
  • Pete Wernick

IBMA Board Chair Jon Weisberger offered a few words about how the Momentum Awards came to be.

“One of the distinctive features of the bluegrass world is that the peak years of careers are often measured in decades, even as we welcome an abundance of new artists and industry professionals into the ranks. So as our top artists and professionals continue to enjoy recognition from their peers through its annual awards, the IBMA’s Board of Directors saw a need to salute some of the best and brightest among those who are closer to the beginnings of their careers, and created the Momentum Awards–noteworthy for including not just singers, pickers and bands, but events or venues and professionals–as a vehicle for drawing attention to their achievements.

Momentum Award nominees and recipients are chosen by small committees of whose members’ experiences and vantage points within the industry give them the broad awareness and perspective needed to make good choices. Though the awards are just a couple of years old, they’re already helping to create new fans and new opportunities.”

Congratulations, and best of luck, to all the nominees.

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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.