2000 W.C. Handy Blues Award Nominations
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2000 W.C. Handy Blues Awards Nominees
by Delta Pickins' Leon McEntire

William Christopher Handy was born on November 16, 1873, in Muscle Shoals, AL. and died March 28, 1958. He studied music and learned to play cornet, worked in a vocal quartet, and eventually toured the South in minstrel shows. He began to write down the Delta Blues he heard and went on to adapt these sounds into his own style. He was credited as the first composer to add flatted thirds and sevenths, "blue notes" to published compositions. He was also the first composer to publish a song with the word "blues" in the title, "Memphis Blues" in 1912. Thus earning him his title of "The Father of the Blues". The movie St. Louis Blues, released in 1958 starring Nat King Cole was a tribute but not a very accurate account of Handy's life. However, the Memphis legend has W. C. Handy Park dedicated to him complete with a statue proudly holding a cornet on the banks of the Mississippi.

The W.C. Handy Blues Awards are the most coveted awards given to blues artists today and the ceremony is once again upon us. There are 23 categories in which only the best performers of the Blues, past and present will be celebrated. There will also be a weekend of fun and great music surrounding the events. The ceremony will take place at the Orpheum Theatre in Memphis, Tennessee on May 25, 2000.

For ticket prices and more info on the weekend of Blues,
Log on to:
The Blues Foundation,
The W.C. Handy Awards,
E-mail bluesinfo,
or call The Blues Foundation at 901-527-2583.

And the nominees for the 21st annual W.C. Handy Blues Awards are:

1. Blues Entertainer of the Year
R. L. Burnside
Shemekia Copeland
Anson Funderburgh with Sam Myers
B. B. King
Rod Piazza
Bobby Rush

2. Blues Band of the Year
Johnnie Bassett and the Blues Insurgents
Anson Funderburg & The Rockets w/ Sam Myers
The Duke Robillard Band
Rod Piazza & The Mighty Flyers
Joe Louis Walker and the Bosstalkers

3. Traditional Blues - Male Artist of the Year
R.L. Burnside
David "Honeyboy" Edwards
Frank Frost
Alvin Youngblood Hart
Louisiana Red
Snooky Pryor

4. Traditional Blues - Female Artist of the Year
Rory Block
Algia Mae Hinton
Ann Rabson
Annie Raines
Koko Taylor

5. Contemporary Blues - Male Artist of the Year 
Bernard Allison
Johnnie Bassett
Robert Cray
Larry Garner
Keb’ Mo’
Joe Louis Walker
Lil’ Ed Williams

6. Contemporary Blues - Female Artist of the Year
Marcia Ball
Deborah Coleman
Shemekia Copeland
Debbie Davies
Susan Tedeschi

7. Acoustic Blues - Artist of the Year
Cephas and Wiggins
David "Honeyboy" Edwards
John Jackson
Keb' Mo'

8. Best New Blues Artist
Ronnie Baker Brooks
Michael Burks
Big Bill Morganfield
Kid Ramos
Mighty Mo Rodgers

9. Soul/Blues - Male Artist of the Year
Bobby "Blue" Bland
Mighty Sam McClain
Little Milton
Wilson Pickett
Bobby Rush

10. Soul/Blues - Female Artist of the Year
Ruth Brown	
Etta James
Denise LaSalle
Trudy Lynn
Irma Thomas

11. Blues Instrumentalist - Guitar
Deborah Coleman
Anson Funderburgh
Big Jack Johnson
Duke Robillard
Kid Ramos
Carl Weathersby
Joe Louis Walker

12. Blues Instrumentalist - Keyboards
Marcia Ball
Johnnie Johnson
Dr. John
David Maxwell
Pinetop Perkins
Honey Piazza

13. Blues Instrumentalist - Harmonica
Carey Bell
Frank Frost
Charlie Musselwhite
Rod Piazza
Snooky Pryor

14. Blues Instrumentalist - Drums
Ray Allison
Sam Carr
Chris Layton
Sam Lay
Willie "Big Eyes" Smith

15. Blues Instrumentalist - Bass
Aron Burton
Johnny B Gayden
Calvin Jones
Bill Stuve
Willie Kent

16. Blues Instrumentalist - Other
Howard Armstrong (Violin)
Gatemouth Brown (Fiddle)
Memphis Horns (Horn Section)
Mark "Kaz" Kazanoff (Saxophone)
Sonny Rhoades (Lap Steel)

17. Traditional Blues Album of the Year
Cephas and Wiggins - Homemade
Louisiana Red - Millennium Blues
Jimmy "T99" Nelson - Rockin’ and Shoutin’ the Blues
Paul Rishell and Annie Raines - Moving to the Country
Muddy Waters - The Lost Tapes of Muddy Waters

18. Contemporary Blues Album of the Year
Luther Allison - Live in Chicago
Brooks/Hunter/Walker - Lone Star Shootout
Albert King/Stevie Ray Vaughan - In Session
Charlie Musselwhite - Continental Drifter
Joe Louis Walker - Silvertone Blues

19. Comeback Album of the Year
John Jackson - Front Porch Blues
Lazy Lester - All Over You
Jimmy "T99" Nelson - Rockin’ and Shoutin’ the Blues
Odetta - Blues Everywhere I Go
Wilson Pickett - It’s Harder Now

20. Soul/Blues Album of the Year
Bobby Blue Bland - Memphis Monday Morning
Ruth Brown - A Good Day for the Blues
Syl Johnson - Talkin Bout Chicago
Little Milton - Welcome to Little Milton
Wilson Pickett - It’s Harder Now

21. Acoustic Blues Album of the Year
Etta Baker - Railroad Bill
Eric Bibb - Spirit and the Blues
Cephas and Wiggins - Homemade
John Jackson - Front Porch Blues 
Furry Lewis - Blues Magician
Paul Rishell and Annie Raines - Moving to the Country

22. Reissue Blues Album of the Year
Bullseye Blues: Clarence Gatemouth Brown - Okie Dokie Stomp
Blind Pig: Pee Wee Crayton - Early Hour Blues
MCA Records: Earl Hooker - Simply the Best, The Earl Hooker Collection
Alligator Records: Hound Dog Taylor - Deluxe Edition
Evidence Records: Various - Living Country Blues, An Anthology

23. Blues Song of the Year - Song Title - Composer (Artist / Album Title)
"A Good Day For The Blues" - Hoy Lindsey, Ricky Ray Rector - (Ruth Brown/
   A Good Day for the Blues)
"Change in My Pocket" - Sam Myers, Anson Funderburgh, Renee Funderburgh,
   J.P. Whitefield - (Anson Funderburgh and the Rockets with Sam Myers/
   Change in My Pocket)
"Memphis Monday Morning" - George Jackson, Raymond Nelson, Dennis Nelson 
   (Bobby Blue Bland/Memphis Monday Morning)
"Orphanage Home Blues" - Louisiana Red, Iverson Minter - (Louisiana Red/
   Millennium Blues)
"Walk Around Telephone Blues" - James Harman - (Kid Ramos/Kid Ramos)

E-Mail Leon: leon@deltaboogie.com
My music review site: Delta Pickins