Brandi Carlile, Black Pumas and Sturgill Simpson among the 2021 Americana Honors and Awards winners

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2021 Americana Honors and Awards
NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - SEPTEMBER 22: Brandi Carlile speaks onstage at the 20th Annual Americana Honors & Awards at Ryman Auditorium on September 22, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Jason Kempin/Getty Images)

Artists and industry professionals gathered Wednesday at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tenn., for the 20th annual Americana Honors and Awards presentation, part of the Americana Music Association's Americana Fest. Awards were presented in six categories, as well as Lifetime Achievement awards. The ceremony was punctuated with numerous live performances by such artists as Steve Earle, Margo Price, Amythyst Kiah, Sarah Jarosz, the Highwomen, Valerie June, Jason Isbell, Amanda Shires, and the Mavericks.

Song of the Year went to the late John Prine for "I Remember Everything." Prine's wife, Fiona Whelan Prine, said, "We are so grateful for this posthumous recognition, John's last recorded song," which was then performed by Brandi Carlile, Amanda Shires and Margo Price — three artists who enjoyed John Prine's friendship and collaboration.

Charley Crockett took home the prize for Emerging Artist of the Year. Bill DeVille, host of United States of Americana, saw Crockett perform just a couple weeks ago at the Turf Club in St. Paul, and is pleased by the accolade. "I love Charley," DeVille says. "I'm just a big, huge fan of Charley Crockett."

Black Pumas, who performed at The Current's 15th anniversary show at First Avenue in January of 2020, took home the honors for Duo/Group of the Year, and fiddle player Kristin Weber earned Instrumentalist of the Year honors. Album of the Year went to Sturgill Simpson for his bluegrass release, Cuttin' Grass - Vol. 1 (The Butcher Shoppe Sessions). Shooter Jennings accepted Simpson's award in the latter's absence but also concluded his speech with, "Rest in peace, Justin Townes Earle," a tip of the hat to Steve Earle and the Dukes' album J.T., nominated in the same category and released in honor of the elder Earle's late son, Justin Townes Earle.

Receiving the honors for Artist of the Year was Brandi Carlile, who, moments before the award presentation, gave a rousing performance of her song "Right On Time," bringing the Ryman Auditorium audience to their feet.

CBS News reporter Anthony Mason presented Carlile with her Artist of the Year award. "This means so incredibly much to me," Carlile said. "To be Artist of the Year, in the one we've all had, there's a weight to it. I think it's profound, and I don 't take it for granted, because it was hard to be an artist this year."

In addition to the awards revealed during the ceremony, gospel group the Fisk Jubilee Singers, Latin-fused country band The Mavericks, blues performer Keb' Mo', producer Trina Shoemaker, and Memphis soul singer Carla Thomas all received Lifetime Achievement Awards.

Here is a complete list of 2021 Americana Honors and Awards winners (in bold). Scroll down to see a gallery of photos from the event.

Instrumentalist of the Year


Megan Coleman
Robbie Crowell
Ray Jacildo
Philip Towns
Kristin Weber

Duo or Group of the Year


Black Pumas
The Highwomen
Our Native Daughters
The War and Treaty
Gillian Welch and David Rawlings

Emerging Artist of the Year


Charley Crockett
Amythyst Kiah
Joy Oladokun
Allison Russell
Waxahatchee

Song of the Year


"Black Myself" - Amythyst Kiah, Written by Amythyst Kiah
"Call Me A Fool" - Valerie June ft. Carla Thomas, Written by Valerie June
"Dreamsicle" - Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, Written by Jason Isbell
"I Remember Everything" - John Prine, Written by Pat McLaughlin and John Prine
"Long Violent History" - Tyler Childers, Written by Tyler Childers

Album of the Year


Cuttin' Grass - Vol. 1 (Butcher Shoppe Sessions) - Sturgill Simpson, Produced by David Ferguson and Sturgill Simpson
J.T. - By Steve Earle and the Dukes, Produced by Steve Earle
The Moon and Stars: Prescriptions for Dreamers - Valerie June, Produced by Valerie June, Ben Rice and Jack Splash
Reunions - Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, Produced by Dave Cobb
World on the Ground - Sarah Jarosz, Produced by John Leventhal

Artist of the Year


Brandi Carlile
Kathleen Edwards
Jason Isbell
Margo Price
Billy Strings

External Link

Americana Music Association - official site

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10 Photos

  • 2021 Americana Honors and Awards
    NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - SEPTEMBER 22: Charley Crockett performs at the 20th Annual Americana Honors & Awards at Ryman Auditorium on September 22, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Terry Wyatt/Getty Images)
  • 2021 Americana Honors and Awards
    NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - SEPTEMBER 22: (L-R) Amanda Shires and Maren Morris of The Highwomen, Yola, Brandi Carlile of The Highwomen, Jason Isbell and Natalie Hemby of The Highwomen perform onstage at the 20th Annual Americana Honors & Awards at Ryman Auditorium on September 22, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Terry Wyatt/Getty Images)
  • 2021 Americana Honors and Awards
    NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - SEPTEMBER 22: Margo Price performs onstage at the 20th Annual Americana Honors & Awards at Ryman Auditorium on September 22, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Terry Wyatt/Getty Images)
  • 2021 Americana Honors and Awards
    NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - SEPTEMBER 22: Amythyst Kiah performs at the 20th Annual Americana Honors & Awards at Ryman Auditorium on September 22, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Terry Wyatt/Getty Images)
  • 2021 Americana Honors and Awards
    NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - SEPTEMBER 22: Raul Malo of The Mavericks performs at the 20th Annual Americana Honors & Awards at Ryman Auditorium on September 22, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Terry Wyatt/Getty Images)
  • 2021 Americana Honors and Awards
    NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - SEPTEMBER 22: Steve Earle performs at the 20th Annual Americana Honors & Awards at Ryman Auditorium on September 22, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Terry Wyatt/Getty Images)
  • 2021 Americana Honors and Awards
    NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - SEPTEMBER 22: Keb' Mo' performs at the 20th Annual Americana Honors & Awards at Ryman Auditorium on September 22, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee. Playing drums is Jerry Pentecost. (Terry Wyatt/Getty Images)
  • 2021 Americana Honors and Awards
    NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - SEPTEMBER 22: Shooter Jennings speaks onstage at the 20th Annual Americana Honors & Awards at Ryman Auditoriu2m on September 22, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Terry Wyatt/Getty Images)
  • 2021 Americana Honors and Awards
    NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - SEPTEMBER 22: Allison Russell performs onstage during the 20th Annual Americana Honors & Awards at Ryman Auditorium on September 22, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Terry Wyatt/Getty Images)
  • 2021 Americana Honors and Awards
    NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - SEPTEMBER 22: Brandi Carlile accepts an award onstage at the 20th Annual Americana Honors & Awards at Ryman Auditorium on September 22, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Terry Wyatt/Getty Images)