Tag Archives: ibma awards

Murphy Henry

Murphy Henry

Yee haw! I will be presenting two awards at the IBMA Awards Show this Thursday, October 2. My good friend (really!) Bill Evans will be my co-presenter and we will be handing out the awards for Female Vocalist of the Year and Guitar Player of the Year. Thanks to my other good friend Chris Stuart, one of the show's producers, for asking me to take part in this year's show. (Note: Both Chris and Bill, along with Janet Beazley, are the teachers on our Harmony Singing DVD!)

The Awards Show will be broadcast live on Sirius XM Satellite Radio (Bluegrass Junction) and streamed live at ibma.org. The show starts at 7:30 but that may just be when they want us in our seats! Not sure what time the broadcast itself starts. The online bluegrass magazine Bluegrass Today is a good place to find out more about what's happening, along with the IBMA website.  ...continue reading

Murphy Henry

In the midst of everything else that’s been happening in my life, in the lives of our family, I don’t want to forget to give you the follow-up about son Chris’s song, "Walking West to Memphis." As I told you, it was nominated for IBMA Song of the Year. Well, as it turned it, Chris’s song didn’t win, BUT the album that it appeared on, Help My Brother, by the Gibson Brothers, did win Album of the Year! And Leigh Gibson did thank Chris and all the songwriters from the stage of the Awards Show which I thought was very classy. Chris handled not winning with much aplomb and grace. I think he understood that just being nominated (that old cliché!) was a real honor. And he received several text messages right after the winner was announced, most of which said, “I still think your song was the best!” Which helped!

Red and I were sitting right beside him at the Awards Show, while Casey and Dalton and my niece Natalie Pate along with Red’s mom, Renee, and his uncle banjo player John Hedgecoth were sitting in the balcony. We were all so proud of Chris for writing such a great song! And he’s got many others which are equally as good. I look forward to their finding their way onto other albums. You go, Chris!

Murphy Henry

I couldn’t wait to tell you all our son Christopher’s song, “Walkin’ West to Memphis,” made the final ballot for IBMA Song of the Year! There are only five songs nominated and his is one of them. What an honor! The song was recorded by the Gibson Brothers on their album Help My Brother. [Here's the link to download Chris's version of the song from CD Baby. And here's the link to do the same from iTunes. And finally here's the iTunes link to the Gibson Brothers' version.]

Many of you know that Chris is a top-notch mandolin and guitar player. (If I do say so myself!) But he is also an extremely gifted songwriter. He and Casey recorded a number of his songs on their CD Get Along Girl, including the aforementioned “Walkin’ West to Memphis.” (Don’t you just love the word “aforementioned”?!) He also included a bunch of his songs on his own CD, Monroe Approved. One of my favorites there is “Listen to the Lonesome Train (Boxcar Door).” He recorded that with Roland White and it is, as we say in the biz, a keeper fer sure.

IBMA 2011 Nominees

The 2011 IBMA nominees. Chris is second from the left, standing next to Ronnie McCoury. Photo from the Bluegrass Blog.

Whenever an event requiring a present comes along, I can almost guarantee that I will get a CD from Chris with a new song or several new songs on it. The title of one, “Maybelle’s Been a Bad Dog” is pretty self-explanatory! He’s got a project in the can now that features a lot of newly-written old country-type songs. He plays some old-school electric guitar on these (in addition to mandolin and acoustic guitar) and does some mighty fine singing.

Last night when I was waiting (with bated breath) to hear if Chris’s song got nominated I was in the middle of lessons. Right after he texted to say his song was, indeed, a final nominee, Bob Mc, who was listening to Sirius Radio on his way home from his lesson, texted to say “congratulations.” I love texting! (And I’m SURE Bob was not texting and driving!)

Mark was also listening to the radio on his way to the lesson. Since Logan is going off to college Friday (Virginia Tech) I had arranged with Mark to turn his lesson (my last one of the night) into a jam session and had invited Logan and Bob Van to come pick. As soon as Mark walked in he said he’d heard about Chris’s song on the radio too. He had had the classic bluegrass response. He said, “I ran off the road!” That usually happens when a banjo picker hears Earl on the radio for the first time, so Chris was in pretty good company!

I was in pretty good company, too, sitting there picking with Mark, and Bob, and Logan while basking in the glow of being a proud mother. We hoisted a few Corona’s in honor of Chris (Not Logan! He has to wait till college!) and proceeded to pick till about 10:00. But the story of that jam will have to wait till another time. I was nice to be with bluegrass folks who understood what a great moment it was for Chris to have a song nominated for Song of the Year.

So, big CONGRATULATIONS to Chris, my fav-o-rite songwriter! And you can bet Red and Casey and I will be there at the Awards Show in September, hoping for Chris to win a Song of the Year trophy, but proud of him no matter what! Yeehaw!

[Editor's Note: You can see the full list of nominees over at the Bluegrass Blog.]

Casey Henry

Casey Henry

Marshall Wilborn, 2009 Bass Player of the Year

Marshall Wilborn, 2009 Bass Player of the Year

We are so proud we're just about to bust. At LONG LAST our very own Marhsall Wilborn (who teaches our bass DVDs) won Bass Player of the Year last night at the IBMA awards. When Chris and Sally Jones read out the name both Murphy and I leapt to our feet, screaming in celebration. It is much deserved and we couldn't be happier. Actually Michael Cleveland and Flamekeeper cleaned up, winning Instrumental Group of the Year, in addition to Fiddle Player (Michael) and Mandolin Player (Jesse Brock).

Here are some pictures from last night. First, Murphy and me in all our finery:

Casey and Murphy Henry

Casey and Murphy Henry

This year the Dillards were inducted into the Bluegrass Hall of Fame. At the pre-awards reception we ran into one of  our banjo heros Doug Dillard, who wrote our Murphy Method stand-by "Banjo in the Hollow." Murphy grabbed him for a picture:

Doug Dillard and Casey Henry

Doug Dillard and Casey Henry

Also before the show we ran into Murphy's longtime friend Claire Lynch, who was nominated for Female Vocalist of the Year, and Claire's daughter Christie:

Murphy Henry, Claire Lynch, Christie Lynch

Murphy Henry, Claire Lynch, Christie Lynch

And last, but not least, here are the Dillards, with Hot Rize, closing out the show singing "Old Home Place":

Mitch Jayne, Dean Webb, Doug Dillard, Tim O'Brien, Rodney Dillard (Nick Forester in the rear.)

Mitch Jayne, Dean Webb, Doug Dillard, Tim O'Brien, Rodney Dillard (Nick Forester in the rear.)

Kristin Scott Benson once again won Banjo Player of the Year, the the Daughters of Bluegrass won Recorded Event of the Year.

I just finished filling out my second ballot for the IBMA Awards.

Digression about IBMA: That would be the International Bluegrass Music Association for you newbies. The IBMA is a professional trade organization for bluegrass musicians and bluegrass business people (event producers, merchandisers, record labels, songwriters, etc.). Each year the IBMA recognizes those musicians who have done outstanding work in the bluegrass music field with awards in twelve categories.

Anyhow, in years past I have ranted about the lack of female presence on these ballots, especially in the Instrumental Performers category.

Digression about how you get on the first ballot: The first ballot is completely open; any member can nominate anyone they choose. So I had no one to blame about lack of female presence except the whole membership! The most I could do was to quote Abigail Adams and say, “Remember the women!” Which I did regularly in my Women in Bluegrass newsletter.

This year I am happy to say that things are much improved. So much improved that I am going to tell you the names of all the women who made this second-ballot, long-list of candidates for nomination on the various instruments. (You’re not a true nominee until the next ballot, on which the five final names will appear.) I am so proud of all of these wonderful, talented, hard-working women! There are EIGHTEEN in all!

IBMA Candidates for Nomination...

For Banjo Player of the Year

Kristin Scott Benson
Alison Brown
Cia Cherryholmes
Donica Christensen
Beth Stevens

For Bass Player of the Year

Beth Lawrence
Missy Raines

For Fiddle Player of the Year

Becky Buller
Molly Cherryholmes
Shelby Hope Gold
Alison Krauss

For Dobro Player of the Year

Sally Van Meter (what would we do without Sally Van?)

For Guitar Player of the Year

Dale Ann Bradley
Rebecca Frazier

For Mandolin Player of the Year

Analise Victoria Gold
Sierra Hull
Lorriane Jordan
Rhonda Vincent

For contrast, in 1999 there were only FIVE women, total, nominated for Instrumental Awards on the second ballot: Kristin Scott [Benson], Alison Krauss, Laurie Lewis, Missy Raines, and Sally Van Meter.

And I wish I’d kept my second ballots from earlier years, when I suspect there were even fewer women nominated, but, frankly, I never thought I’d need them. But now I find I’m wrong. I didn’t realize I’d turn out to be such a raging feminist! I thought I was making a enough of a statement simply by playing the banjo and writing songs like “I Ain’t Domesticated Yet.” Silly me!

So, again congratulations to all these women who are out there hitting the road hard. You go!

Murphy HenryFrom time to time here I’ll be including some posts with feminist leanings. There will almost always be a bluegrass connection, but I realize some of you may not be interested and might rather scoot on over to visit with our buddies at the Banjo Hangout, so I’ll try to remember to give you a heads up. So, heads up!

Today I want to shine a spotlight on the 2008 International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) Awards Final Ballot which I received a few weeks ago and promptly marked and mailed back. It’s rare to see female performers nominated as Instrumental Performers but this year THREE women are nominated and I want everybody to know that this is Big News. (Okay, not as big as Sarah Palin being nominated for Vice President, but still and yet big for the world of bluegrass!)

So, who are these brave and bold women who are carving out new turf?

Kristin Scott Benson—nominated for Banjo Player of the Year, her first nomination.

Sierra Hull—nominated for Mandolin Player of the Year, her first nomination. And she is the first woman to be nominated in this category!

Missy Raines—nominated for Bass Player of the Year. Her 16th nomination!

Congratulations to all of you! You’re doing all us womyn proud!

Now, in case you’d like to put this into perspective, I did a little digging.

Since the IBMA Awards were instituted in 1990, only two women have won Instrumental Awards. Alison Brown was the first, winning Banjo Player of the Year in 1991. Missy Raines became the second in 1998, and has since won six more times. (Go Missy!)

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