My wife Julie and I attended the second UK Americana Awards at London’s St John in Hackney tonight, which marked the end of the two day Americana Music Association UK conference.
Hosted by Bob Harris, an audience of special guests, music industry and members of the public took in performances from Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Richard Thompson and five-time Grammy award winner Mary Chapin Carpenter. There were also performances from UK artists Yola Carter, William the Conqueror, Peter Bruntnell, Danni Nicholls, Lewis & Leigh and Ethan Johns, alongside International Album of the Year Award winner Sam Outlaw.
To mark the first anniversary of the launch of the Official Americana Albums Chart, Jools Holland joined Martin Talbot, CEO of the Official Charts Company, to present Van Morrison with the Best Selling UK Americana Album of 2016 award for his album Keep Me Singing, which spent 10 weeks atop the chart.
Harry Shearer presented Richard Thompson with the AMA-UK’s Lifetime Achievement Award, while Andy Fairweather Low introduced a video acceptance from Trailblazer Award winner Albert Lee.
Devon trio Wildwood Kin received the Bob Harris Emerging Artist Award.
Meanwhile, AMA-UK membership-voted awards were presented on the night by Imelda May, Kiki Dee, Jim Lauderdale, Timothy B Schmit, Angaleena Presley and Guy Fletcher OBE.
Winners of the seven membership-voted Awards were as follows:
- UK Album of The Year presented by Imelda May: Ghost by Lewis & Leigh (produced by Matt Ingram)
- International Album of the Year presented by Jim Lauderdale: Angeleno by Sam Outlaw (produced by Ry Cooder and Joachim Cooder)
- UK Artist of the Year presented by Al Booth: Yola Carter
- International Artist of the Year presented by Timothy B Schmit of The Eagles: Sturgill Simpson
- UK Song of the Year presented by Kiki Dee: The 4:19 by Lewis & Leigh (written by Al Lewis and Alva Leigh)
- International Song of the Year presented by Angaleena Presley: Hands of Time by Margo Price (written by Margo Price)
- UK Instrumentalist of the Year presented by Guy Fletcher: Chris “CJ” Hillman.
My thanks to photographer Jonathan Stewart who was given permission by event producer Trudie Myerscough-Harris and Sarah Wainman of HelpMusiciansUK to capture the evening’s activities. I also wish to thanks Sarah for the opportunity to supply MU lanyards for the artists and backstage personnel.
Beforehand, Julie and I had an early, and very tasty dinner at Oslo Hackney, off Mare St, where we met Crispin Parry of British Underground and the charming Drew Young from New Orleans, who was at the Awards representing Southern Comfort.