2017 International Folk Music Award winners

Kris Kristofferson performs at the International Folk Music Awards – photo by Neale Eckstein

After taking two folk Grammys on Sunday for her Undercurrent record, Sarah Jarosz continued her sweep last night when she accepted the Album of the Year trophy at the International Folk Music Awards show in Kansas City.

The show serves as the kickoff event for the annual Folk Alliance conference, which performs roughly the same trade association role as the International Bluegrass Music Association does in our realm. The conference continues through this weekend with a theme of Forbidden Folk – Celebrating Activism in Art.

Here’s a list of all the winners last night:

  • Album of the Year: Undercurrent, Sarah Jarosz
  • Song of the Year:  Black Man in a White World, Michael Kiwanuka & Inflo
  • Artist of the Year:  Parker Millsap
  • Spirit of Folk Awards: Barbara Dane, Chloe Goodyear, Michelle Conceison, Ramy Essam, Si Kahn, and SONiA disappear fear
  • Lifetime Achievement Awards: Iconic composer David Amram (Living), activist songwriter Malvin Reynolds (Legacy), and prolific Canadian folklorist Helen Creighton (Business/Academic)

Also presented were two new awards, The People’s Choice Award for political and social commentary to Bruce Cockburn, and the Clearwater Award for sustainable event production to the Clearwater Festival, whose annual event in Westchester County, NY is the award’s namesake.

Master of Ceremonies for the show was Paula Cole, which included appearances from Kris Kristofferson, Megan Mullally, Andres Ramirez, Amado Espinoza, Arelis Flores, Kris Kristofferson, Jean Rhoe, and Eliza Gilkyson.

More details about Folk Alliance can be found online.

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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.