The UKBlues Federation Announce Their shortlist For The 2021 UKBlues Awards

The 2021 UKBlues Awards ceremony will take place on May 9th, hosted— once again – by blues legend Paul Jones.

As for this year’s shortlisted talent: newcomers to the scene, When Rivers Meet, have been nominated for 4 awards, whilst Catfish, Dom Martin, Elles Bailey, Connor Selby have each been nominated for three. It is also great to see more new names to these awards with Errol Linton picking up two award nominations for Artist of the Year and Album of the Year; also, Alice Armstrong and Emma Wilson picking up nominations in the Emerging Artists Category.

In light of the changed musical landscape over the last year, with very few gigs and festivals and a lot more online content, this year’s awards will reflect the changes.

Ashwyn Smyth (Founder & Chair of the UKBlues Federation) puts this year’s awards in context: “It does not need me to tell you that 2020 was a year like no other. However, as a Federation, we are determined that what people have done to support, promote and play the blues in this incredibly difficult time should not go unmarked.

We have had to make a few changes to some of the categories and, in particular recognition of the originality and creativity people have shown, we have introduced two new categories: Most Inspirational Online Performance of the Year and Most Innovative Use of Virtual Media of the Year.

We look forward to announcing the results of the 2021 UKBlues Awards at a dedicated event on Saturday 9th May 2021, more details of which will be released soon.

Voting for this year’s awards is now open. You can find links to all of the finalists’ websites — also, to video footage for all the musicians — at https://www.ukbluesawards.com/finalists. The Federation urges would-be voters to visit this page to get to know something about those finalists with whom they may not be familiar, or simply to refresh their memories, before casting their votes. The Federation also urge voters to acquaint themselves with the rules, which can be found at https://www.ukbluesawards.com/rules.

Voting link – https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/2021UKBLUESAWARDS-VOTING/

BLUES ARTIST OF THE YEAR 

CONNOR SELBY

ELLES BAILEY

ERROL LINTON

KYLA BROX

MATT LONG

BLUES INSTRUMENTALIST OF THE YEAR 

CHRIS CORCORAN

DOM MARTIN

GILES ROBSON

MATT LONG

STEVIE WATTS

EMERGING BLUES ARTIST OF THE YEAR

ALICE ARMSTRONG

CONNOR SELBY

DOM MARTIN

EMMA WILSON

WHEN RIVERS MEET

BLUES BAND OF THE YEAR 

CATFISH

CHRIS BEVINGTON ORGANISATION

THE STEVIE WATTS ORGAN TRIO FEAT. ALICE ARMSTRONG

THE CINELLI BROTHERS

WHEN RIVERS MEET

ACOUSTIC BLUES ARTIST OF THE YEAR 

DOM MARTIN

HALF DEAF CLATCH

MARK HARRISON

MARTIN HARLEY

TREVOR BABAJACK STEGER

JULES FOTHERGILL YOUNG BLUES ARTIST OF THE YEAR

ASHLEY SHERLOCK

CONNOR SELBY

JOE ANDERTON

MARCUS PRAESTGAARD-STEVENS

TOBY LEE

BLUES-BASED FESTIVAL OR EVENT OF THE YEAR – LIVE OR VIRTUAL

BROADSTAIRS BLUES BASH

GREAT BRITISH ROCK & BLUES FESTIVAL, SKEGNESS

ISOLATION FESTIVAL – NICK GARNER

LOCKDOWN MUSIC FESTIVAL – JASON ELLIOTT & PADDY MAGUIRE

SWANAGE BLUES FESTIVAL

DAVE RAVEN UK BLUES-BASED BROADCASTER OF THE YEAR 

ASHWYN SMYTH

GARY GRAINGER

PAUL LONG

PETE FEENSTRA

RICHARD DUNNING

BLUES ALBUM OF THE YEAR

AIN’T NOTHIN’ BUT – ELLES BAILEY

EXILE LIVE IN LOCKDOWN – CATFISH

NO ENTRY – ERROL LINTON

SAND & STONE – CHRIS BEVINGTON ORGANISATION

WE FLY FREE – WHEN RIVERS MEET

MOST INSPIRATIONAL ONLINE PERFORMANCE OF THE YEAR

CATFISH – EXILE – LIVE IN LOCKDOWN

ELLES BAILEY – AIN’T NOTHIN’ BUT LIVESTREAM SERIES

KYLA BROX – LIVE AT THE ROYAL EXCHANGE THEATRE

SOUL SHINE JAM BAND

WHEN RIVERS MEET – ROCK THE LOCKDOWN – LIVE STREAMS

MOST INNOVATIVE USE OF VIRTUAL MEDIA OF THE YEAR 

JAMES OLIVER’S TWANG TUESDAYS

RUFUS FRY HARMONICA FITNESS PROGRAMME SERIES

TOMMY ALLEN – LIVE IN THE CHAIR

TUESDAY NIGHT MUSIC CLUB – ZOOM GIGS

WHITE NOISE STUDIOS – ONLINE SESSIONS

Spotlight on last year’s event: Due to COVID-19 lockdown and social distancing restrictions, the 2020 UKBlues Awards had to take place online, rather than amidst the glitz of the iconic Dingwalls venue in London, as planned, However, the virtual nature of the ceremony in no way detracted from the real prestige of the awards. The event was compèred by British Blues legend and broadcaster Paul Jones, with a cavalcade of guest presenters including ‘Whispering Bob’ Harris, Bernie Marsden (Whitesnake), Blues royalty Walter Trout, and Larkin Poe – the reigning monarchs of Blues, Rock, and Roots music!