Blues Music Awards 2020 Winners Announced In Virtual Ceremony
The Blues Music Awards were held virtually last weekend with musical contributions from all over the globe. Bonnie Raitt, Steve Miller, Robert Cray, Steve Cropper, Dion, and Little Steven Van Zandt all took part in The Blues Foundation’s 2020 event offering words of inspiration for nominees and fans alike.
But the night belonged to rising blues star Christone “Kingfish” Ingram, who walked away with five statues, three of which were for his debut album, Kingfish (Best Emerging Artist Album, Best Contemporary Blues Album and Album of the Year), along with two performer awards for Best Contemporary Blues Male Artist and Best Instrumentalist-Guitar.
Nick Moss and his band featuring DennisGruenling were also big winners taking home three awards (Band of the Year, Traditional Blues Album for Lucky Guy!, and Moss personally in the Song of the Year category for his composition “Lucky Guy”). Additionally, last year’s Soul Blues Male Artist award winner, Sugaray Rayford, claimed that prize again this year along with the coveted B.B. King Entertainer of the Year award.
The star-studded list of presenters included Charlie Musselwhite, Warren Haynes, Fantastic Negrito, Ruthie Foster, William Bell, Beth Hart, and Keb’ Mo’, who shared the names of nominees and winners in 26 categories. Blues icons already inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame were recognized in multiple categories, with Mavis Staples claiming the Vocalist award, Bobby Rush winning in the Soul Blues Album category for his latest release Sitting on Top of the Blues, and newest inductee, Bettye LaVette, taking home the Soul Blues Female Artist award. Jimmie Vaughan, last nominated in 2008, was back at the apex again winning Traditional Blues Male Artist and the show’s host, Shemekia Copeland, snagged the Contemporary Blues Female Artist award.
Broadcast on both The Blues Foundation’s Facebook page and YouTube channel, the virtual show also featured unique flashbacks from prior years’ awards shows including notable blues luminaries such as Dr. John, Clarence “Gatemouth”Brown, Koko Taylor, Honeyboy Edwards, Luther Allison, Rufus Thomas, Ruth Brown, and of course the iconic B. B. King.
Barbara Newman, Blues Foundation President and CEO said: “With so much pain and suffering due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we wanted to provide the healing power of the blues to music lovers everywhere as we shared the very best in blues from the past year with fans the world over. We were able to celebrate this iconic music from The United States to the United Kingdom, from Argentina to Australia, from Canada to Croatia and beyond.”
The full roster of 2020 Blues Music Awards nominees and winners can be found HERE.