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THE AMA FESTIVAL & CONFERENCE Photos: (left to right) The Mavericks, All Star Version of The Weight


Harris, Kasey Chambers, Matraca Berg and Buddy Miller—took to the stage and absolutely wowed the audience with favoured tracks from the highly acclaimed country-gospel release. A rocking set from the Mastersons two-piece finished the evening off nicely at the High Watt. Although jam-packed full of interesting events from early


morning to late evening, for me, Friday only really produced three solid highlights, the first being Rod Picott, Rose Cousins, Susan Cattaneo and Amy Black performing in the round at the magnificent Sheraton Hotel; the four putting on an acoustically stripped-back show of personal songs and intimate stories from their very individual careers. However, it was an early-evening appointment at the Bridgestone Arena that really stole the limelight, as a sizable group of competition winners, fans and media representatives piled into the small recording room for a special live SiriusXM airing of Nick Lowe songs form the just released LOWE COUNTRY tribute album, with performances from Caitlin Rose, Robert Ellis, Colin Gilmore and Amanda Shires—all delivering perfect vocals and memorable performances, making the songs their own. Without disappointment, the final day lived up to previous


expectations; the morning spent with one third of the Bombshells, Buffy Lawson in the stunning Station Inn not far from where we’d been staying; the warm-natured and enchanting blonde chatted to us about her roller-coastar career, her inspiring inspirations and her forthcoming release, I’M LEAVING YOU FOR ME. Deciding to put to use the little bit of spare time we had, a visit to the world-renowned Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum was long overdue, and I have to say, it was every bit as wonderful as I’d imagined and dared hope for—three floors oozing with country music history, which would provide a real treat for any country music lover and fanatic. To finish off proceedings, an unmissable and certainly a one off set from Lee Ann Womack and Buddy Miller singing a series of golden duets to an absolutely packed Mercy Lounge provided a thorough highlight, despite having to stand on my tiptoes to see above the sea of heads—Lee Ann Womack every bit as wonderful as she ever was and had been. This was my first time flying and first time away from home,


and I have to say, I enjoyed every bit of it from beginning to end, so much so, I can’t quite wait for my next trip to the exciting city of Nashville Tennessee. Emily Saxton


Americana Music Awards and Honors 2012 Award Winners: Instrumentalist of the Year: Dave Rawlings Album of the Year: This One’s For Him: A Tribute to Guy Clark; produced by Tamara Saviano and Shawn Camp Song Of The Year Award: “Alabama Pines;” Written by Jason Isbell and performed by Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit Emerging Artist of the Year: Alabama Shakes Artist of the Year: Gillian Welch Duo/group of the Year: The Civil Wars Lifetime Achievement for Performance: Bonnie Raitt Lifetime Achievement Award for Instrumentalist: Booker T. Jones Lifetime Achievement Award for Songwriting: Richard Thompson Lifetime Achievement Award for Executive: Dennis Lord


Americana UK Chart


1 (-) Chris Smither - Hundred Dollar Valentine (Signature Sounds)


2 (1) Beachwood Sparks - The Tarnished Gold (Sub Pop)


3 (-) Andre Williams and the Sadies - Night and Day (Yep Roc)


4 (2) Dawes - North Hills (Loose) 5 (-) Alejandro Escovedo - Big Station (Universal) 6 (3) Spain - The Soul of Spain (Glitterhouse) 7 (-) Dropkick - Until I Fall Away (Sound Asleep) 8 (4) Great Lake Swimmers - New Wild Everywhere (Nettwerk) 9 (5) Sad Accordions - A Bad Year for the Sharons (Rainboot) 10 (7) Sara Watkins - Sun Midnight Sun (Nettwerk)


The UK Home for Americana, Alt-Country & Alternative Maverick 5


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