NPR Music and Folk Alley returned to Nashville on Thursday night to present a live webcast of the Americana Music Association's 10th annual honors and awards show from the Ryman Auditorium.
Instrumentalist of the Year:
Duo/Group of the Year:
The Avett Brothers
Song of the Year:
"Harlem River Blues" by Justin Townes Earle
New Artist of the Year:
Mumford & Sons
Album of the Year:
"Band of Joy" by Robert Plant
Artist of the Year:
The awards show was hosted for the ninth time by songwriter Jim Lauderdale, and featured live performances by this year's Lifetime Achievement Award recipients — Lucinda Williams, Jerry Douglas and Gregg Allman — as well as many of the award nominees, including Robert Plant, The Civil Wars, Justin Townes Earle, Hayes Carll, Elizabeth Cook and more.
This year's five Lifetime Achievement Award honorees stand out as some of the most innovative and inspirational leaders in the music world.
Lucinda Williams received the Lifetime Achievement Award for songwriting. A three-time Grammy winner, Williams was named "America's best songwriter" by Time magazine in 2002. Albums such as Car Wheels on a Gravel Road received almost unanimous critical acclaim, and earned the reclusive Williams legendary status rare for musicians her age.
Dobro virtuoso Jerry Douglas was distinguished as an outstanding instrumentalist for his solo work and collaboration with Alison Krauss and Union Station. He has won 12 Grammy Awards, a National Heritage Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, and was named the Artist in Residence for the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2008.
Gregg Allman received tonight's honor for performance. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee and Allman Brothers Band founder is known for his powerful voice, for his work on Hammond B3 Organ, and for composing much of the Allman Brothers Band's material alongside Dickey Betts.
As owner of the legendary FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, Ala., Rick Hall has recorded some of the most significant musicians in American history, including Otis Redding, Aretha Franklin, Duane Allman, Wilson Pickett and Etta James. He was presenteded with the Jack Emerson Lifetime Achievement Award for an Executive.
The Trailblazer Award is for "Whispering" Bob Harris, who has been widely acknowledged for his long-running rock, country and folk program on BBC Radio 2, culminating in his appointment as an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 2011 for his services to music broadcasting. Harris also helped found Time Out magazine and pioneer the BBC's digital station BBC6.