April 29th, 2011 at 12:03 am
For an awards ceremony that has a habit of being predictable, the Northwest Arkansas Music Awards (more often shortened to the NAMAs) sure had some unpredictable moments tonight (Thursday, April 28) during its 16th celebration of the local live music scene.
For starters, there was the moment that electronica/indie pop artist Messy Sparkles, who earlier in the evening won a NAMA as Best New Artist, decided to ask the audience if he should take his pants off. The vote came back yes, so he danced around in his underwear. That was unexpected.
There were also more touching moments, such as when an award – henceforth to be called the “Harold” Award – was presented to Harold Weities, booking agent for NAMA host venue George’s Majestic Lounge. Weities isn’t a fan of the spotlight, and he’d be the first to admit that. But if anyone deserves special recognition on the music scene, it’s Weities, who is a fixture of the local scene and serves as George’s owner Brian Crowne’s right-hand man.
The ceremony, like the Grammy Awards, always seems little lengthy, but efforts to tidy things up seemed to move things along with just a little more speed.
Even then, where were some familiar moments. Emcees Kyle Kellams and Robert Cochran were presenting at what the hosts believed to be their 12th consecutive NAMA ceremony. They were replaced late in the evening by Eric Jensen, station manager of student-run radio station KXUA and several of the station’s other DJs.
Also, in what seems to be recurring theme from the NAMAs, the Shreve brothers, Benjamin Del Shreve and Randall Shreve, had another successful year. Ben took home one of the evening’s biggest prizes, the Album of the Year for his band’s sophomore effort “Sleeping Sweetly.” Randall earned two awards, one for Best Male Vocalist in a Band and another for Best Rock Band with his backing group The Sideshow. The brothers also joined forces for a performance honoring supporters of Northwest Arkansas’ music scene who passed away since the last ceremony. Among those memorialized were Steve Ward, Windy Austin, Bruce Walker and Lois Stratton.
Other big winners were Cletus Got Shot, who nabbed not only the Best Folk/Bluegrass Band award but also Artist of the Year. Candy Lee also won twice, taking home a NAMA for Best Female Singer/Songwriter and one for another for Best Female Vocalist in a Band for her work with The Sweets.
A full list of award winners follows. Congrats to all of this year’s winners.
Best Female Singer/Songwriter: Candy Lee
Best Male Singer/Songwriter: Jeff Kearney
Best Jazz Band: Fayetteville Jazz Collective
Best Latin Band: Neta Band
Best Female Vocalist in a Band: Candy Lee (from Candy Lee and The Sweets)
Best Male Vocalist in a Band: Randall Shreve (from Randall Shreve and The Sideshow
Best Spoken Word Performer: Zac Henderson
Best DJ: DJ Shortfuze
Best Blues Band: Kory Montgomery Band
Best Cover Band: (tie) Leah and The Mojo Doctors and LaFuSo
Best Indie/Alternative Band: Memphis Pencils
Best Metal/Hard Rock Band: Perpetual Werewolf
Best Punk/Hardcore Band: The Plaid Jackets
Best Jam/Funk Band: 1 Oz. Jig
Best Folk/Bluegrass Band: Cletus Got Shot
Best Country Band: Sarah Hughes Band
Best Rock Band: Randall Shreve
Best Hip Hip/R&B Band: (tie) The Commoners and SoundChild Crew
Best New Artist: Messy Sparkles
Best Album Art: John Moore
Best Producer/Studio: Adam Putman of Insomniac Studios
Artist of the Year: Cletus Got Shot
Album of the Year: Benjamin Del Shreve for “Sleeping Sweetly”