The 20th Annual Americana Awards took place earlier this week in Nashville, Tennessee and recognized the stars, legends and biggest releases spanning the unique, regional genre. Hosted at the Ryman Auditorium, the Americana Awards were held amidst the festival, both hosted by the Americana Music Association. The Orchard is honored to work with five of the 11 honorees.
This year’s highlights included incredible performances by Nashville’s finest including Jason Isbell and Amanda Shires, and Charley Crockett. Actor and musician Keifer Sutherland joined the festivities as one of the evening’s presenters.
The winners of the night included the massively talented singer-songwriter, producer, and actor, Sturgill Simpson. His album Cuttin’ Grass – Vol. 1 (The Butcher Shoppe Sessions) which he co-produced alongside David Ferguson earned the award for Album of the Year. Simpson recently released a new album that has also received acclaim amongst the industry titled, The Ballad of Dood and Juanita. Simpson takes an unconventional approach to writing songs by focusing on the complete story with each album.
The late great John Prine was awarded Song of the Year for his posthumous release “I Remember Everything.” The multi-GRAMMY Award winning artist was known for his thoughtful lyrics, groundbreaking style and career longevity as well as his magnetic personality. His music continues to unify music lovers across country, indie, folk and beyond while his label Oh Boy Records shares his spirit by turning out more music from up and coming musicians.
Charley Crockett took the stage for a second time in the show to accept his award for Emerging Act of the Year. He got his start in music late but has taken off at a sprint releasing 10 records in just six years. A Texas native, Crockett challenges the traditional norms of the country music scene. However, having lived in a variety of countries and a variety of lives, Crockett has maintained his affinity for southern blues. If you looked up “outlaw” in the dictionary, there’s a chance you’d find Charley Crockett looking back.
Speaking of non-traditional country music, The Mavericks were awarded the Trailblazer Award. The band combines Latin, rockabilly and country for a sound that they have defined as their own. Last year, the group released their first full Spanish language album, aptly titled “En Español” paying tribute to their Latin influences and heritage.
Additionally, our Kind of Blue label partner Keb Mo received the Americana Lifetime Achievement Award.
Congratulations to all those nominated as well as those who took home awards. Keep making music, and we’ll keep listening.