By Jim Hagerty
Hundreds of musicians, supporters and a sizable event staff were on hand at Tebala Shrine Temple for the 19th Annual Rockford Area Music Industry (RAMI) Awards last Thursday, April 29, to cap another successful year for the local music scene.
Awards were given in 35 categories including Album of the Year (Miles Nielsen), New Act (Dirty Fishnet Stockings), Song of the Year (Silver) and Folk/Solo Pop (Sarah Ambramowitz).
Steve Shannon (DJ, drummer, radio personality), Harlan Jefferson & Rick Burns (blues, jazz and funk artists) and Ernie & the Po’ Boys (blues band) were inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Lifetime Achievement Award recipients were Joe Paluzzi, Vincent Chiarelli and the late Doug Furze. Sandy Petersen, wife of longtime hornist Kevin Petersen, accepted the first-ever In Memoriam Award. Petersen played with a host of local bands before his death last summer.
Between award presentations, some of Rockford’s best bands entertained the crowd. Dean Moriarty Jazz Band, Too Deep, 2010 RAMI Youth Charity Jam winner Hope Despite and AudioDrive were among the acts to take the stage.
According to RAMI Secretary Cindy Maschke, the performances would not have been possible without the support of Guzzardo Performance Music. Led by efforts of area musician and songwriter Arik Jenkins, Guzzardo provided the stage equipment and major contributors to the RAMI Youth Charity Jam.
“Arik does a heck of a lot for RAMI,” Mashke said.
For its years of community support for young musicians, Guzzardo Performance Music was presented with a Community Service Award for its Emerging Artist Competition.
“(RAMI co-founder) Gary Wilmer would be very proud of the recipient of this year’s Community Service Award,” emcee Jim McDowell said before presenting the award to Jenkins.
RAMIs were also awarded to the best in five Technician categories. Dwayne Barker of Barker Studios took home two technical awards (Best Recording Studio and Studio Sound Engineer) while Erik Myles (Lighting Technician), Tori Peterson (Live Sound Engineer) and Luis Lara earned top honors in the Technician category.
The event was superbly catered by Mike Tietz of Lucerne’s Fondue & Spirits, while La Monica Beverage supplied a fully-stocked selection of beer and wine.
For more information about RAMI, visit its Web site at ramiawards.com.
2010 RAMI Award recipients
Following are the 2010 RAMI Award recipients, by category:
Album of the Year—Miles by Miles Nielsen
Blues—Steve Ditzell & Blue Lightning Band
Cabaret/Broadway—Mike Williamson Trio
Choral Group—Rock Valley Community Chorale
Classical Ensemble—Mendelssohn Chamber Orchestra
Classical Instrumentalist—Katie Schulz
Community Service—Guzzardo Performance Music’s Emerging Artists Competition
Composer of the Year—Miles Nielsen
DJ—DJ Jordan Chance
Folk/Solo Pop—Sarah Ambramowitz
Funk/R&B—The Usual Suspects
Jazz, Contemporary—Dan Voll
Jazz, Traditional—Cocktail Party
Latino—Revolucion De Amor
Lighting Technician—Erik Myles
Live Sound Engineer—Tori Peterson
Musical Outreach Organization—Phantom Regiment
New Act—Dirty Fishnet Stockings
Outstanding Achievement—Tracy Silverman
Rap/Hip Hop—Young Jilla
Recording Studio—Barker Studios
Rock, Acoustic—Cover Story
Rock, Classic—The Crunchy Frogs
Rock, Modern—The Stevee Nix
Rock, Oldies—Vintage Vinyl
Rock, Pop/Retro—The Sensations
Rock, Punk/Indie/Alternative—Mulligan Stu
Song of the Year—“Needing You Tonight” by Silver
Stage Manager—Luis Lara
Studio Sound Engineer—Dwayne Barker
World Music—Pipes and Drums of Clan MacAlpine
From the May 5-11, 2010 issue