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Band of Joy win Album of the Year at Americana Awards Show


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NASHVILLE, October 13, 2011 – Robert Plant's Band of Joy picked up album of the year honors, and Buddy Miller earned an Artist of the Year nod, during the Americana Music Association's 10th Annual Honors and Awards tonight at Nashville's historic Ryman Auditorium.

The event celebrated a year of the best in roots music. It opened with a moving tribute to the late John Hartford, represented by an unaccompanied banjo and bolo hat side stage, followed by Buddy Miller, Emmylou Harris, Alison Krauss, Jerry Douglas and Don Was performing "I'll Fly Away" in celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the O' Brother Where Art Thou? soundtrack.

Jim Lauderdale served again as master of ceremonies, his ninth in-a-row, while Miller led an all-star house band comprised of famed record producer Don Was on bass, Cody and Luther Dickinson on drums, guitars and various other instruments, Greg Leisz on steel guitar and John Deaderick on keys. Adding harmonies were The McCrary Sisters: Ann, Regina and Alfreda.

It was a big night for Miller, winning not only the Artist of the Year Award, but adding another Instrumentalist of the Year Award to his treasure chest of Americana trophies, now totaling twelve. Raul Malo and Carrie Rodriguez handed him the award. Keb Mo and Marshall Chapmann presented him with the Artist of the Year.

The 2009 New/Emerging Artist Justin Townes Earle cemented his place as one of Americana Music's heirs apparent by picking up Song of the Year for "Harlem River Blues." John Oates and Mindy Smith presented.

The Avett Brothers walked away with another Duo/Group of the Year win, their third after winning in 2007 and 2010 and fourth overall, while Mumford and Sons were crowned New/Emerging Artist of the Year. Mark Olsen and Gary Louris of The Jayhawks presented the Duo/Group Award; The Greencards, winners in 2006, presented New/Emerging Artist.

Other award highlights of the night included a tearful Lucinda Williams accepting the Lifetime Achievement Award for songwriting from record executive Luke Lewis, who last year earned the Lifetime Achievement Award for Executive. She followed it with a haunting performance of "Blessed."

Joining Williams in the Lifetime Achievement categories, the legendary Gregg Allman received the Lifetime Achievement Award in Performance. Allman is one of the architects of Southern Rock and member of the Allman Brothers Band. Keb Mo handled the presenting honors.

Alison Krauss gave the Lifetime Achievement Award for Instrumentalist to Jerry Douglas, equally revered for his solo work, session playing, and as a longtime member of Krauss' Union Station.

R&B Legend Candi Staton presented the Jack Emerson Lifetime Achievement for Executive to Rick Hall, whose groundbreaking production work at FAME Studios created the Muscle Shoals sound, a unique style that crossed musical formats. Afterward, she took to the Ryman stage to sing her hit "Heart On A String."

Bob Harris crossed the pond to accept his Trailblazer Award from Emmylou Harris. The celebrated radio host and journalist works as a tireless advocate for exceptional artistry, playing a pivotal role in exposing listeners to rising talent, no matter the genre.

The annual Americana Award Show was peppered with standout performances, from Amos Lee ("Cup of Sorrow"), Elizabeth Cook ("El Camino"), Earle ("Harlem River Blues"), Jessica Lea Mayfield ("For Today"), Hayes Carll ("KMAG YOYO"), The Secret Sisters ("Why Don't You Love Me?"), Miller ("Gasoline and Matches"), The Civil Wars ("Barton Hollow"), The Avett Brothers ("The Once and Future Carpenter") and Plant ("Monkey").

The evening ended as sentimentally as it began, with Allman performing "Sweet Melissa," and then, joined by a majority of the night's guests, a rousing rendition of "Glory, Glory Hallelujah" to a standing audience.

The event was broadcast live throughout Middle Tennessee on Nashville Public Television (NPT). An abridged version will be broadcast on PBS stations nationwide on November 19th (check local listings) as a special episode of Austin City Limits Presents.


2011 Americana Honors and Awards recipients







Lifetime Achievement Award for Songwriter:


Lifetime Achievement Award for Performance: GREGG ALLMAN

Lifetime Achievement Award for Instrumentalist: JERRY DOUGLAS

Jack Emerson Lifetime Achievement Award for Executive: RICK HALL

Trailblazer Award: BOB HARRIS

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From Lemon Squeezings' account of Plant's speech:

Robert Plant says he's forever committed to Buddy Miller

As Robert Plant picked up one of the big prizes at a Nashville awards ceremony last night, he did more than just thank his touring bandmate Buddy Miller: He pretty much committed himself to having Miller involved in all of his musical projects from here on out.

Plant delivered his remark at the Americana Music Association's annual Honors and Awards ceremony, while accepting the Album of the Year award for his Band of Joy CD. Miller earned two awards of his own at the ceremony.

Before Plant and Miller co-produced the Band of Joy album released last year, they were already touring bandmates from the Raising Sand tour with Alison Krauss. Plant said it on that 2008 tour that he basically decided on sticking with Miller into the uncertain future: "When we toured the Raising Sand tour, I said to the forces that be, I said, 'We can't go anywhere without Buddy Miller,' and I'm never gonna go anywhere without Buddy Miller, ever."

The live audience in Nashville cheered Plant's comments about their hometown hero, who in a few minutes would be named Artist of the Year -- ironically, beating out Plant in the category.

Earlier, upon winning Instrumentalist of the Year, Miller had proclaimed himself "really, really not that good." He said, "I feel like I get away with murder with what I do." Miller mentioned Plant by name, along with Emmylou Harris and Jim Lauderdale, thanking these "wonderfully, incredibly talented people" for letting him "sneak in there behind them."

Plant was much more complimentary of Miller's abilities as an instrumentalist. To him, Miller is "the consummate player of all the licks and the beauty and the soliloquy of great American music that I'd ever heard in my life."

Plant thanked not only Miller in his acceptance speech but also Krauss and his more recent female collaborator, singer Patty Griffin. Said Plant, "When we were making the Band of Joy album, it got to Christmas a year or so ago, and I said to Buddy, 'There's something missing, and it's getting a bit too pastoral.' And so, I have to thank Patty Griffin for really turning the record round."

The British singer also recalled a pivotal encounter with Americana music from even before he was a teen-ager." When I was 12, I heard 'The Mountain's High' by Dick and Dee Dee," he said. "I never looked back. I just kept dreaming of American music and coming over here, and I did. I stole a great deal with my old companions."

The Band of Joy, with Greg Leisz filling in for the absent Darrell Scott, performed the song "Monkey" -- but not before Allman Brothers Band leader Greg Allman got in a quick comment: "Did you ever think you'd be sittin' here in the Ryman [Auditorium] watching Robert Plant and the Band of Joy?"

Posted at 4:36 PM


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Well then...

THAT is quite some testimonial to Buddy by Mister Plant. Now maybe people can realize that there ain't gonna be another "Zeppelin reunion"...at least not for a while...and move forward.

Many thanks Aquamarine and your friend Lemon Squeezing for your accounts...sounds like a fun evening. I hope the show eventually airs here in L.A.

Congrats to Robert & Band of Joy, Buddy, Patty and all the other winners!

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