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Beachcomber Music Awards Winners and Highlights

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Nice work, Georgia.

Beachcomber Editor and awards host Chris Manson’s Ninth Ever Beachcomber Music Awards cover, signed by most of the night’s musicians in attendance.

Our fearless music correspondent Nikki Hedrick, artist Robin Wiesneth, and Best Horn Player Al Alvarado.

Showoffs Allen Rayfield and Season Ammons with their three Beachcomber Music Awards—Best Harmonica Player (Allen), Best Singer-Songwriter (Season) and Best Duo.

Brian Taylor, Matt McCarty and Ray Hitchell jazz things up at the BMAs.

Hope Given, bandleader.

This year’s Hall of Fame honoree JoE Fingas with Finga FAYA bandmate P-Nut and Best Punk Artist winner Nik Flagstar.
Photo by Tim Anderson.

By Chris Manson

 

Remind me never to schedule the music awards during issue week. It’s almost impossible.

 

But thanks to the staff at Destin’s Graffiti & the Funky Blues Shack and the above-and-beyond technical savvy of Mike Ingram from the Moon Lagoons, the Ninth Ever Beachcomber Music Awards went off without a hitch, attracting hundreds of Emerald Coast musicians and supporters.

 

The capacity crowd enjoyed live performances from Hope Given’s new band (featuring Shane Curle, Kaelin Boone and Christian Mayes), the Matt McCarty Quintet (an all-star lineup that included Ray Hitchell on keys, Charles Pagano on drums, Steve Gilmore on standup bass, and Brian Taylor on trumpet), Nik Flagstar and His Dirty Mangy Dogs, Kickstand Jenny and Finga FAYA.

 

The Moon Lagoons hosted a “Superjam” following the evening’s final award presentation.

 

Thanks to all the presenters, whose names are listed below with the complete list of this year’s nominees. Winners are indicated in bold.

 

ALBUM OF THE YEAR

Presented by CHELSEA from Q-92 Radio

Cassidy Dickens, Ghosts 

Kickstand Jenny, Best of Vol. 1

Bri Wehner, Nothing But Sunshine

 

BEST ALTERNATIVE ARTIST

Presented by STRANGE TANG

Astral Lite

Nik Flagstar and His Dirty Mangy Dogs

The Owsley Brothers

 

BEST AMERICANA ARTIST 

Dread Clampitt

Schatzi + the String Boffin

The Wide Open

 

BEST BAND 

Black Eyed Blonde

Heritage 

Kickstand Jenny

 

BEST BASSIST 

Dan Collins

Benghazi Gresham

Chris McComas

For the second time in Beachcomber history, McComas’ name is spelled correctly.

 

BEST BLUES ARTIST 

Blue Lew

Boukou Groove 

Finga FAYA

 

BEST CHRISTIAN

GOSPEL-ARTIST

Elisabeth Coats

Faith Assembly Church Band 

Lauren Veach

 

BEST CLASSICAL ARTIST 

Northwest Florida Symphony Orchestra 

Katie Ott

Sinfonia Gulf Coast

Not one single member of the NFSO was present to accept the group’s award.

 

BEST COMEDY ARTIST

PRESENTED BY CHERYL JONES

Act4Murder

Emerald Coast Theatre Company Improv Troupe

Mark Labarge

Act4Murder founder Paula Hilton’s daughter Jessika Kelsh accepted on behalf of her mother, who was out of town on business. (Sounds fishy…)

 

BEST COUNTRY ARTIST 

Austin Jennings

Luke Langford and the 331 South Band 

Jacob Mohr

 

BEST COVER BAND OR SOLO ACT

Black Eyed Blonde

Cadillac Willy

Kickstand Jenny

 

BEST DANCE BAND 

Black Eyed Blonde

Cadillac Willy 

Hubba Hubba

 

BEST DJ 

DJ Chubby

DJ/VJ Doc Roc

DJ Vladi

 

BEST DRUMMER 

Isaac Eady

Will Russo

AJ Sipos

 

BEST DUO 

Flash Flood Duo

Will & Linda Pleasants

The Wide Open

 

BEST FEMALE VOCALIST

Presented by AUSTIN JENNINGS

Cassidy Dickens

Cheryl Jones 

Bri Wehner

 

BEST FIDDLE-VIOLIN PLAYER

Jessica Heit

Sue Kittredge

Matt Miller

 

BEST FOLK ARTIST 

Continuum

Mari Gleason

The Steenos

 

BEST GUITARIST

Presented by BLUE LEW

Brandon Day

Mike Ingram

Scott Rockwood

 

BEST HARMONICA PLAYER

Jim Couch

Allen Rayfield 

JAB Wilson

 

BEST HORN PLAYER 

Al Alvarado

Ike Bartley

Matt McCarty

 

BEST INSTRUMENTALIST

Presented by

JOHNNY PALMER

Sean Dietrich

Isaac Eady

Franko “Washboard” Jackson

 

BEST JAM BAND 

Cadillac Willy

Heritage 

New Earth Army

 

BEST JAZZ ARTIST 

Al Alvarado

Jones and Company

The Red Bar Jazz Band

 

BEST KEYBOARDIST 

Metz Barnes

Joe Fingas

Cheryl Jones

 

BEST LIVE MUSIC VENUE

Presented by TIM & RUSTY MORINELLI

AJ’s, Destin

Green Door Music Hall, Fort Walton Beach

30A Songwriter Music & Coffee, Santa Rosa Beach

 

BEST LATIN ARTIST 

Amid

Roberto Padron

Sal Salaz

 

BEST MALE VOCALIST

Presented by HOPE GIVEN

Brandon Day

Charles Estes 

Austin Jennings

 

BEST MANDOLIN PLAYER 

Ben Parsons

Balder Saunders

Neil Sebree

 

BEST METAL ARTIST

Accursed Creator

Dark Star Coven

Kultus

Rainey’s Revenge

 

BEST MUSIC EVENT OF 2016

Okaloosa RevFest

Rock for a Cure

30A Locals Last Stand

30A Songwriters Festival

 

BEST MUSIC VIDEO 

Continuum, “Black and Blue”

Bill Garrett, “America the Beautiful”

Strange Tang, “God Willing”

 

BEST NEW ARTIST

Presented by ALISSA STEFFENS

Mari Gleason

Dino Lourdi

The Moon Lagoons

 

BEST ORIGINAL SONG

Presented by CHRIS HAYES

Cassidy Dickens, “The Next Five Years”

Kickstand Jenny, “Why” 

Bri Wehner, “Nothing But Sunshine”

 

NEW – BEST PERCUSSIONIST

Presented by TED COBENA

Louis Antoon

Steve Ferry 

Milton Stucker Jr.

Inexplicably, my remark that Ferry used to be the lead singer of the band Journey got a big laugh.

 

BEST PUNK ARTIST

Presented by BILL GARRETT

Analogue Collective

Astral Lite

Nik Flagstar and His Dirty Mangy Dogs

 

BEST RAP/HIP-HOP ARTIST

Chris Carter

Florida J

Strange Tang

 

BEST R&B-SOUL ARTIST 

Boukou Groove

Jones and Company

Okaloosa Sound

 

BEST REGGAE ARTIST 

Heritage

Sway Jah Vu

Tribe Zion

 

BEST ROCK ARTIST 

Cadillac Willy

Hotel Oscar

Kickstand Jenny

 

BEST SINGER-SONGWRITER

Presented by THE GOOD LOOKINGS

Season Ammons 

Cassidy Dickens

Bri Wehner

The Good Lookings stole Rusty Morinelli’s toast shtick and even sang the name of the winner. Good job, guys.

 

BEST SOLO ARTIST 

Chris Alvarado

Brandon Day

Bri Wehner

 

NEW – BEST TRIBUTE ACT

Ron Adams – Shadow of the King

Emerald Coast Blues Brothers 

RoshamBeatles

 

HALL OF FAME

Presented by CADILLAC WILLY

Presented to musicians that have made a significant impact on the Emerald Coast music scene for more than a decade. Previous honorees include Duke Bardwell, Jones and Company, Bill Garrett, Franko “Washboard” Jackson, Donnie Sundal, “Smilin’” Fritz Froeschner, Dread Clampitt and Cadillac Willy. 

Doug “Dr. D” Dickerson

Joe Fingas 

Nik Flagstar

Chris Hayes

 

MUSICIAN OF THE YEAR

Presented by This Year’s Hall of Fame Winner

Austin Jennings

Cheryl Jones 

Stuart Redd

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