A few weeks ago, the Austin AMP Music Industry teamed up with the newly minted Austin Music Blogger Alliance for the Austin Music Blogger Awards, held at the Spider House Ballroom. The first-ever event, sponsored by Fender, honored those in Austin’s music community for their efforts in a number of wide-ranging categories, from music promotion to sound engineering.
Among the awards presentations, several local artists and bands performed on Spiderhouse Ballroom’s two stages. In total, awards were given in 17 different categories with six band and artist performances, including: Jess Williamson, Orthy, Magna Carda, A Giant Dog, Shivery Shakes and Mirror Travel.
Melissa Graham LaMure, founder of 18Below, was the recipient of the Esme Barerra Award in Music Activism and Education. Her heartfelt and emotional acceptance speech was evidence of her passion for promoting Austin’s young artists. Her nonprofit, 18Below, gives Austin youth the opportunity to showcase their talents in the form of music, art, poetry, film and dance. Jennifer Houlihan, executive director of Austin Music People, did a tremendous job organizing the event and helping to recognize not only influential musicians, but also those who have worked tirelessly to position Austin as a leader in live music. Most apparent, however, was the impressive community vibe and collaborative spirit felt at the Spider House Ballroom that evening. Looking around the room, the crowd assuredly nodding their heads to the live local music being honored, provided a sense of connection to what our city is most recognized for.
The full list of award winners:
Best Poster: AIRSHP for Dance for Dystonia, presented by Kerry Awn
Best Concert Tech: Bryan Schrumpf, ACL Live at the Moody, presented by Jennifer Houlihan
Unsung Hero Award: Herb Holland, Texas Community Music Festival, presented by Jennifer Houlihan
Esme Barerra Award in Music Activism and Education (2): Melissa Graham LaMure, 18Below , presented by Joel LaViolette; and Darden Smith, SongwritingWith:Soldiers, presented by Donovan Keith
Best Local Music Promoter: Neil Diaz, presented by John Wickham
Best Recording Studio: Orb Recording Studio , presented by Heather Wagner Reed
Best Arranger: Dave Madden, presented by KVUE’s Pat Buchta
Best Venue Sound Engineer: Jamie Wellwarth, Continental Club, presented by Maggie Lea and Tamara Hoover
The Austin Music Blogger Awards went to:
Best Photographer: Pooneh Ghana
Best Solo Artist: Jess Williamson
Best Band: Black Books
Best Album: Black Books – “Black Books”
Best EP: Borrisokane – “Murdering Teeth”
Best Single: Shivery Shakes – “Sidewalk Talk”
Best DJ: Learning Secrets
Best Venue: Mohawk
AMBA Reader’s Choice for Best Album: Blue October – “Sway”
In addition to Fender, sponsors included Austin Eastciders, Capitol City Records, and Philip Rogers Photography, and of course the nine blogs of the Austin Music Blogger Alliance.
Read more about Ian Orth, and wife Emily Larson Orth in the article “It Takes Two” inside The Admire Issue of Citygram Austin Magazine [February 2014].
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