And the nominees are… Canadian Folk Music Awards announces finalists and Awards Gala performers
Organizers of the eighth annual Canadian Folk Music Awards (CFMA) announced the 86 nominees – folk musicians, recordings and producers – that have been chosen as 2012 finalists, on October 5, 2012. The recipients of the 17 awards being presented this year will be announced at the Awards Gala in Saint John, NB on November 17.
“We are very excited about the roster of nominees that have been selected for the final round of assessment,” said Grit Laskin, founder and director of the Awards. “There are five finalists in each category, except English Songwriter of the Year, which actually has six. There was an unbreakable tie in that category, so it only seemed fair to include the sixth nominee.”
The Awards received 451 submissions this year, according to CFMA Board member Dawn Harwood-Jones, who was on hand to announce the finalists’ names. Each submission was assessed using a two-stage elimination model, with a different five-member jury named for each category. All of the nominees will now go through one more round of judging before the final award recipients are selected.
“We have nominees from coast to coast to coast,” said Harwood-Jones at the announcement. “From as far away as Whitehorse, Yukon to as close to Saint John Caraquet, NB and pretty well everywhere in between.
“This is a real representation of Canadian folk music, not only geographically, but in terms of the variety of genres represented, as well,” she added. “Everything from contemporary songwriters, to traditional music (fiddlers, accordion players, singers, dancers, and so on), to Celtic, Quebecois, Blues, Alt-Country, World, Klezmer, Bluegrass and more.”
Also officially announced today was the line-up of entertainers who will grace the stage of the Imperial Theatre during the Awards Gala on November 17. Acclaimed New Brunswick singer, guitarist and composer Matt Andersen will once again join forces with renowned harmonica player and composer Mike Stevens in a reunion reminiscent of their duo Piggyback CD released in 2010.
Also on the roster are Cindy Church and Susan Crowe, who have chosen to perform at the CFMAs despite the passing of their dear friend Raylene Rankin.
“Cindy’s and Susan’s appearance is a true tribute to a wonderful folk performer who was taken away from us far too soon,” said Bill Garrett, the Gala’s producer and CFMA board member.
Multi-award winning bluegrass band the Spinney Brothers are in the line-up, as well, as are Quebec’s famed Genticorum, and Calgary native and original Wailin’ Jenny Cara Luft. The evening will also feature a special and unique performance by the Atlantic Ballet Company, dancing to a live performance by Mike Stevens.
“We are also pleased to once again welcome Benoit Bourque as the show’s MC,” said Garrett. A musician and dancer, Bourque is currently a member of celebrated ensemble La Bottine Souriante.
“I can guarantee our New Brunswick audience that Benoit will thrill them with his boundless energy and contagious joie de vivre. It’s going to be a really fun evening!
“And now that we know who the finalists are we can start to organize our Nominee Showcases,” Garrett added. Two Nominee Showcases, one featuring traditional folk and the other spotlighting the contemporary scene, will take place the Thursday and Friday evenings preceding the Saturday night Gala.
The Awards Gala will be the culmination of “Folk on the Water,” a week-long celebration featuring nominee showcases, community performances, open mics and much more.
“The local committee wanted to create a Festival of performances to celebrate and complement the CFMA Gala weekend,” said Dave Ryan, chair of CFMA 2012 Saint John. “The week will include everything from school performances by artists to free concerts, a Francophone show, an after-Gala Sunday brunch – something for everyone.”
For a complete list of all 86 nominees in the 17 different categories that make up this year’s CFMAs, visit http://folkawards.ca/awards-night/nominees
Information on the CFMA 2012 Saint John activities is available at www.cfma2012saintjohn.com.