Hey there, Detroit Proud music fans, have you ever heard of a little thing called the Detroit Music Awards? They’re an annual award ceremony celebrating the best that Detroit has to offer, on the national, regional, and local levels – as voted on by a panel of Detroit music industry folks. They present awards in many categories, including best in each musical genre: Folk/Acoustic, Blues, Jazz, Gospel, Country, Classical, Rock/Pop, R&B/Hip-Hop, Electronic, and World.
We thought for this week’s playlist we would shine a light on this year’s winners…check them out!
Emily Rose – “Seven Moons” – Outstanding Acoustic Artist/Group
Emily Rose is an indie folk singer and songwriter. She has been writing music since she was just a young girl and her solo career really took off in 2005. Since then, she’s released two full-length albums and three EPs. Not only taking the DMA for Outstanding Acoustic Artist/Group this year, she also won the DMA for Outstanding Acoustic/Folk Songwriter in 2009, 2010, and 2013! Check her out here!
Jill Jack – “Sunflower Girl” – Outstanding Folk Artist/Group
Singer-songwriter Jill Jack is known around Detroit for her amazing stage presence and open humor with her audiences. She blends together a mix of rock and folk creating a sound that’s all her own. She has released eight albums, ranging from soul to rock, and from folk to country. Each performance is about opening a window and shining a light into her songwriting. Check her out here!
Bobby Murray – “I’m Stickin’ With You” – Outstanding Blues Artist/Group
Bobby Murray is an electric blues guitarist, songwriter, and record producer. He has played in Etta James’ backing band for over 20 years now and has performed on three Grammy Award-winning recordings with Etta James and B.B. King. Aside from other awards and accomplishments throughout his career (including his 2014 DMA), Bobby was awarded Detroit Blues Society’s prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award in 2011. Check him out here!
The Infatuations – “Yesterday Morning” – Outstanding R&B Artist/Group
The Infatuations are becoming, well, quite the infatuation of many Detroiters. They’re quickly turning into one of Detroit’s hottest bands – combining a music style of R&B, soul, funk, disco, and pop, all with a rocking twist. They were nominated for an astounding 14 awards across multiple categories at the 2014 Detroit Music Awards and took home five awards! Check them out here!
Carolyn Striho – “World Attack” – Outstanding Classical Composer
Carolyn Striho has had a huge fan following from early punk rock, to soul and folk, to her current warmly-reminiscent, passionate style. With a catchy and melodic sound on vocals, keyboards, and heavy acoustic guitar, her live shows are an energetic experience. As of 2014, she has been nominated for over 50 Detroit Music Award,s and this year alone, took home three awards! Check her out here!
Julianne Ankley – “He’s Still My Boy” – Outstanding Country Songwriter
Imagine if you took Sara Evans, Martina McBride, and Wynonna Judd and combined their styles into one person…sounds like a heavy dose of great country music, right? Well that’s exactly what you get with country singer-songwriter Julianne Ankley. She’s all about her music and her passion really shines through in her performances. Check her out here!
CYBERTRYBE – “Brand New Day” – Outstanding Electronic/Dance Artist/Group
With thick synths, heavy guitars, pounding bass, almighty drums, and melodic yet hard vocals, CYBERTRYBE can be easily named Detroit’s top industrial rock band. They take influences from other notable industrial bands Nine Inch Nails, Korn, and Metallica, and have cultivated a unique sound that has won the hearts of Detroiters. They’ve been nominated for a Detroit Music Award every year since 1997 and have taken home a total of 10 since then. Check them out here!
Bootsey X – “Go Power” – Outstanding Rock/Pop Vocalist
Long known for his iconic stage presence and overall gentleman personality, Robert Mulrooney, famously known as Bootsey X, was a beloved rocker from Detroit. Sadly, he passed away last November after a long battle with brain cancer, though that did not stop him from winning the award for Outstanding Rock/Pop Vocalist at this year’s Detroit Music Awards. His music will go on forever in the hearts of his fans. Check out more here!
Critical Bill – “Here I Am” – Outstanding Hip-Hop Artist/Group
“No formulas, no fashions, no formats.” That’s the motto of rock/rap group Critical Bill. Since their start in 2006, Critical Bill has brought their powerful blend of rap, hip hop beats, and dirty rock guitar to thousands of fans across Michigan and outward. Their first full-length independent album 313 sold over 16,000 copies with no real marketing or promotions…just the group doing what they do best! Check them out here!
DJ Psycho – “The Grid” – Outstanding Hip-Hop DJ
DJ Psycho is an acclaimed DJ from the Detroit Techno Militia…which is a collective of DJs and producers from Detroit on a mission to promote Detroit Techno around the world. DJ Psycho has given the last 25 years of his life to representing the streets of Detroit in the best way he knows how: music. Not only does he know how to rock a crowd, but his mixes are unique and powerful. Check him out on the Detroit Techno Militia website here!
Who do YOU think deserves a Detroit Music Award? Tell us in the comments!