The Americana Music Association heralded its best and brightest at the 20th Annual Americana Honors & Awards at the Ryman Auditorium last night (Sept. 22), with Brandi Carlile taking home her second Americana trophy for Artist of the Year.
Other big winners of the night include Sturgill Simpson who won Album of the Year for his first bluegrass project, Cuttin’ Grass Vol. 1 – The Butcher Shoppe Sessions; the Black Pumas, who were named Duo/Group of the Year; and the late John Prine, whose song “I Remember Everything,” written by Pat McLaughlin and Prine, received Song Of The Year honors.
Charley Crockett received the award for Emerging Act of the Year while Kristin Weber, a 14-year veteran of worldwide touring and recording as a fiddler, was named Americana Instrumentalist of the Year.
“Given today’s uncertain times, there is no greater assurance that the power of music brings people together to uplift their spirits when they need it the most,” said Jed Hilly, Executive Director of the Americana Music Association. “I’m beyond proud of our artists and community for reminding me again why this is my favorite night of the year, every year.”
Highlights from the evening included a rendition of “I Believe” by the Fisk Jubilee Singers, as well as Carla Thomas offering a performance of her Stax Records staple, “B-A-B-Y.” The Mavericks delivered a sweeping Spanish performance of “La Sitiera,” and Carlile, Margo Price and Amanda Shires paid tribute to the great John Prine with a heartfelt take on “I Remember Everything.”
Throughout the night, attendees were treated to additional performances by Crockett, Steve Earle, Henry with O’Donovan, The Highwomen (Carlile, Natalie Hemby, Maren Morris, Shires) with Yola, Jason Isbell with Shires, Sarah Jarosz, Valerie June with Thomas, Amythyst Kiah, Buddy Miller, Keb’ Mo’, Price, Allison Russell and Aaron Lee Tasjan.
2021 Americana Honors & Awards Winners and Honorees:
Album of the Year: Cuttin’ Grass – Vol. 1 (The Butcher Shoppe Sessions), Sturgill Simpson
Artist of the Year: Brandi Carlile
Song of the Year: “I Remember Everything” John Prine, written by Pat McLaughlin and John Prine
Duo/Group of the Year: Black Pumas
Emerging Act of the Year: Charley Crockett
Instrumentalist of the Year: Kristin Weber
Legacy of Americana Award, presented in partnership with the National Museum of African American Music: Fisk Jubilee Singers
Trailblazer Award: The Mavericks
Lifetime Achievement Award for Performance: Keb’ Mo’
Lifetime Achievement Award for Producer/Engineer: Trina Shoemaker
Inspiration Award: Carla Thomas
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