Sammy Shelor wins Steve Martin prize

Lonesome River Band leader Sammy Shelor has been announced as the 2011 recipient of the Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Banjo and Bluegrass Music.

The award is in recognition of Sammy’s high level of musicianship, and the impact he has had on the development of modern bluegrass banjo. It carries a $50,000 cash grant, financed through Martin’s generosity.

Sammy told us this afternoon that the whole experience has been a bit surreal…

“I’m still in shock. It’s not every day that you go in to the Post Office and find a package with a check for $50,000!

It’s an honor to be recognized by your peers for what you do. The people involved in this award I respect highly, and I appreciate them thinking of me in this light.”

We hope to hear shortly from Steve with his thoughts on the 2011 choice for the prize that bears his name, but didn’t want to wait and share the news.

Congratulations Sam!

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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.