Northern California Bluegrass Award winners announced

A J Lee 2013 NCB AwardsHere’s an interesting twist on the ongoing battle between bluegrass traditionalists and big-tenters.

At this past weekend’s Northern California Bluegrass Awards in Redwood City (just south of San Francisco), there was a tie in the balloting for Best Bluegrass Band. The vote was split dead-even between old-schoolers Bean Creek and the more experimental Snap Jackson & The Knock On Wood Players.

I suppose this could mean that the big-tenters are catching up, that the traditionalists are hanging tough, or simply that these are two engaging and entertaining acts that caught the attention of bluegrass lovers in the top half of the state.

Bean Creek 2013 NCB AwardsThis was the Northern California Bluegrass Society’s 6th annual awards, which are patterned on the IBMA awards and balloting process. Members nominate bands and artists, with winners chosen in two rounds of voting to select finalists and ultimately award recipients.

The awards were presented during NCBS Bluegrass On Broadway Festival. Other winners include:

  • Best Male Vocalist – John Kornhauser
  • Best Female Vocalist – A. J. Lee
  • Best Guitar Player – Yoseff Tucker
  • Best Mandolin Player – Ed Neff
  • Best Dobro Player – Jim Mintun
  • Best Bass Player – Lisa Burns
  • Best Banjo Player – Luke Abbott and Larry Cohea (tie)
  • Best Fiddle Player – Pete Hicks and Lee Anne Welch (tie)

Lifetime Achievement Awards were given to Kim Elking, Laurie Lewis, Kathy Kallick and Beth Weil.

Congratulations all around!

More details about the organization and its activities can be found on the NCBS web site.

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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.