2021 Blues Music Award Winners Announced By The Blues Foundation
42nd Bma Poster.jpg

The irrepressible spirit of the blues was during The Blues Foundation& # 39; s 42nd Blues Music Awards (BMAs) presented by Global Electronic Technology when the winners in twenty-five (25) categories were announced. Broadcast virtually due to COVID precautions, the show's highlights included heartfelt video statements from many winners as well as lively appearances from several former BMA winners. The BMAs are awarded by members of the Blues Foundation and are widely recognized as the highest honor for blues musicians. The 42nd Blues Music Awards coincide with the 42nd annual celebration of Black Music Month, which recognizes the immeasurable influence of black artists and their music on America's musical traditions.

Shemekia Copeland was the show's big winner, winning three awards including the coveted B.B. King Entertainer of the Year Award. As in 2020, Copeland received the Contemporary Blues Female Artist Award and, with Uncivil War, also received the award for the Contemporary Blues Album. Christone "Königfisch" Ingram continued his winning streak from 2020 when he won five awards and two 2021 awards, winning both Contemporary Blues Male Artist and Instrumentalist – Guitar. Blues fans who joined the show were delighted with two outstanding performances by "Kingfish" and heard his warm personal acceptance speeches. Other multiple award winners were Elvin Bishop and Charlie Musselwhite, whose album 100 Years of Blues was named Album of the Year and Traditional Blues Album, and Mike Zito, who won in the Blues Rock Artist category and in the Blues Rock Album category for Mike Zito and Friends – Rock ’n’ Roll: A Tribute to Chuck Berry.

The cross-generational traditions of the blues were underlined when Blues Hall of Famers Bettye LaVette won for Soul Blues Female Artist and Bobby Rush won for Acoustic Blues Album with Rawer than Raw. Rush, who performed during the show, appeared on stage to receive his award. Instrumentalist – Drum Winner Kenny "Beady Eyes" Smith carried on the blues legacy of his father, Willie "Big Eyes" Smith, who won 16 BMAs. Newcomer King Solomon Hicks was named Best Emerging Artist Album for Harlem. Other outstanding achievements were the victory of Rick Estrin & the Nightcats for the band of the year and the victory of Walter Trout for the song of the year "All Out of Tears".

The host of the show, the long-running Big Llou, kept the show going with his characteristic spirited banter. In addition to the great performances by Bobby Rush and Christone "Kingfish" Ingram, the audience was shown outstanding performances by former BMA winners John Németh & the Blue Dreamers, Shaun Murphy, Don Bryant, Watermelon Slim and Southern Avenue. The legacy of Memphis as "The Home of the Blues" was presented when Rodd Bland, son of Blues Hall of Famer Bobby "Blue" Bland, and the famous Royal Studio family Boo, Yvonne and Lorraine Mitchell appeared to the BMA Announce winners.

Blues Foundation President Patricia Wilson Aden said, “We are proud to continue the time-honored tradition of the Blues Music Awards in 2021. Although we couldn't get together for a live performance, the global blues community came together virtually for a great celebration of the best of the blues. We applaud all this year's winners and are grateful for the support of everyone who made the 42nd Blues Music Awards a unique experience. "

Winner of the Blues Music Awards 2021

B.B. King Entertainer of the Year
Shemekia Copeland

Photo credit: Joseph A. Rosen

Album of the year
100 Years of Blues – Elvin Bishop and Charlie Musselwhite

Band of the year
Rick Estrin & the Night Cats

Photo credit: Jay Skolnick

Song of the year
"All Out of Tears" – written by Walter Trout, Marie Trout and Teeny Tucker
(played by Walter Forelle)

Photo credit: Jay Skolnick

Best up and coming artist album
Harlem, King Solomon Hicks

Acoustic blues album
Rawer than raw, Bobby Rush

Blues rock album
Mike Zito and Friends – Rock & # 39; n & # 39; Roll: A tribute to Chuck Berry, Mike Zito

Contemporary blues album
Uncourt War, Shemekia Copeland

Soul blues album
I heard that, Robert Cray Band

Traditional blues album
100 Years of the Blues, Elvin Bishop and Charlie Musselwhite

Acoustic blues artist
Keb ’Mo’

Photo credit: James Wessels

Blues rock artist
Mike Zito

Photo credit: Arnie Goodman

Contemporary blues artist
Shemekia Copeland

Photo credit: Joseph A. Rosen

Contemporary blues artist
Christone "Königfisch" Ingram

Soul blues artist
Bettye LaVette

Photo credit: Marilyn Stringer

Soul blues male artist
Curtis Salgado

Photo credit: Jessica Keaveny

Traditional blues artist (Koko Taylor Award)
Rory block

Photo credit: Marilyn Stringer

Traditional blues artist
John Primer

Photo credit: Roger Stephenson

Instrumentalist – bass
Danielle Nicole

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Kenny "Beedy Eyes" Smith

Instrumentalist – guitar
Christone "Königfisch" Ingram

Instrumentalist – harmonica
Kim Wilson

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Jimmy Carpenter

Photo credit: Jay Skolnick

Instrumentalist – Piano (Pinetop Perkins Piano Player Award)
Anthony Geraci

Photo credit: Jay Skolnick

Instrumentalist – vocals
Ruthie Foster

Photo credit: Roger Stephenson

Fans who missed the original broadcast of Global Electronic Technology's 42nd Blues Music Awards on June 6, 2021 will be able to catch the show for 48 hours through June 8, 2021 by visiting Mandolin.com.

The Blues Foundation is grateful for the support of the generous sponsors of the Virtual Blues Music Awards 2021: Global Electronic Technology, Memphis Tourism, the Renasant Convention Center, Alligator Records, BB King & # 39; s Club, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, BMI, Boyle Insurance , Bruce & Barbara Newman, Endless Blues Records, Hohner Harmonicas, The Legendary Rhythm & Blues Cruise, Sherry & Tim May, Stony Plain / True North Records and Ted Reed Productions. The Blues Foundation's major donors include Arts Memphis and the Tennessee Arts Commission.

The Blues Foundation


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