Hit repeat, ignore

Welcome to the First Annual "Detroit Music Awards" Awards, honoring the annual ceremony that's known far and wide for its unbridled backslaps (self or otherwise) and a suffocatingly compartmentalized view of "important" local music. Last Thursday's DMAs, brought to us by the Motor City Music Foundation, were dubbed "one more night of your life that you'll never get back" by the announcer. Let's begin our awards by giving said announcer the nod for Best Unironic Use of a Phrase.

So, onto the other "awards" awards. (Full disclosure: In the interest of fairness, there was no dubious voting process, no selection committee, and no self-interested group[s] weighing in for this award presentation. Rather, these awards were scribbled drunkenly on a wet bar napkin during the actual DMA ceremony.)

Best Host: Mark Ridley, owner of the Comedy Castle, who receives this distinction for being the night's only host. His unique brand of witless droning recalled Bob Saget's days of hosting America's Funniest Home Videos, albeit more inebriated — and that's a good thing.

Best Use of a T-shirt: This honor goes to one of the members of Keem the Franchise's posse, whose only job seemed to be flailing a white shirt over his head.

Best Idea: (tie) Kevin Saunderson, J. Moss, William Balcomb, White Stripes and the Hummingbirds, who, despite winning awards, had the good sense to not show up. Surely they were busy with more important activities, like scrubbing the bathroom, sleeping or watching the season finale of The O.C.

Longest Piano Interlude: Boogie-woogie keysman Mr. B: Congratulations for your ability to play really fast for a period of time that could only be described as an eternity.

Best Set by a Performer Who Immediately Went on to be Snubbed for an Award: The Volebeats, who were seemingly duped into playing a 10-minute set prior to their loss in the Best Country category, where they were trumped by the Orbitsuns (??!!). This is unlike Hot Club of Detroit, who — surprise, surprise — won the Best Contemporary Jazz award while all set up and poised for a triumphant performance.

Comeliest Bartender: Laurie, whose level of loveliness increased with each cocktail.

Biggest Surprise: The Palace of Auburn Hills for winning Best Indoor Music Venue. Apparently the "roofs" at the Magic Bag, Small's, Majestic Theatre Center, Lager House, Belmont, Alvin's, Painted Lady, New Dodge and Paycheck's Lounge are only temporary screened bivouacs.

Best Time for Equipment Failure: In the middle of SSM's worthy performance, naturally. The sound of a mic cutting out never sounded so sad.

Most Ridiculous Performance: The Hard Lessons. Singer-guitarist Augie Visocchi must have attended the same School of Rock as the Hives. His antics, which saw him running around in the audience banging a tambourine and doing his best Chris Novoselic impression (the old performance-ending guitar toss), may have been youthfully earnest, but came off all silly-ass. Announcing that his band wasn't pop-rock, rap-rock or American Idol-rock but rather just rock was one thing, but then he called the audience "brothers and sisters." Heaven forbid such a gaffe! Oh, Mr. Kramer, won't you please come home. ...

Saving Grace Award: Obie Trice and the All-Star tribute to Proof. Though the use of old term "all-star" may have been a tad on the liberal side, the performance was on-point and worthy.

Best Acceptance Speech: At the DMA's, little to no attention from the State Theatre crowd was paid to the winners. After all, listening to another artist's speech would waste precious demo-hawking, self-touting and gossiping time, now wouldn't it? That's why Best Hip-Hop DJ winner House Shoes' announcement that he was moving to California because "Detroit ain't listening" summarized the evening beautifully.


2006 Detroit Music Awards Winners

Distinguished Achievement Award: The Andantes

Distinguished Achievement Award: American Music Research Foundation

Distinguished Achievement Award: Gene Elzy

Distinguished Achievement Award: Joe Weaver


Outstanding Acoustic Artist: Jill Jack

Outstanding Acoustic/Folk Instrumentalist: Billy Brandt

Outstanding Acoustic Recording: Jill Jack, "Moon and the Morning After"

Outstanding Acoustic Songwriter: Jill Jack

Outstanding Acoustic Vocalist: Jill Jack

Outstanding Folk Artist: Jeremy Kittel

Blues/Rhythm & Blues (R&B)

Outstanding Blues Artist: Thornetta Davis

Outstanding Blues/R&B Instrumentalist: Johnnie Bassett

Outstanding Blues/R&B Recording: Alberta Adams, "Detroit Queen of the Blues"

Outstanding Blues R&B Songwriter: Kate Hart

Outstanding Blues R&B Vocalist: Thornetta Davis

Outstanding R&B Artist: Detroit Women with Motor City Express


Outstanding Classical Composer: William Bolcom

Outstanding Classical Instrumentalist: Patricia Masri-Fletcher

Outstanding Classical Recording: William Bolcom, "Songs of Innocence and Experience," U of M School of Music Symphony Orchestra

Outstanding Classical Small Ensenble: Detroit Chamber Winds and Strings

Outstanding Classical Vocalist: Abha Dearing

Outstanding Community Orchestra: Birmingham Bloomfield Symphony


Outstanding Electronic/Dance Artist/Group: Amp Fiddler

Outstanding Electronic/Dance DJ: Kevin Saunderson

Outstanding Electronic/Dance Recording: Adult., "Gimme Trouble"

Outstanding Electronic/Dance Producer: Amp Fiddler


Outstanding Country Artist/Group: Orbitsuns

Outstanding Country Instrumentalist: Sir Tim Duvalier

Outstanding Country Recording: Hummingbirds, "Depot Town"

Outstanding Country Songwriter: Dennis and Scott Forbes

Outstanding Country Vocalist: Terrie Lea


Outstanding Anthology/Compilation/Reissue: Eminem, "Curtain Call: The Hits"

Outstanding Live Performance: Detroit Women and Motor City Express

Outstanding Live Sound Technician: Neil T. Sever

Outstanding Local Record Label: Mack Avenue Records

Outstanding Major Label Recording: Stevie Wonder, "A Time to Love"

Outstanding National Single: White Stripes, "Blue Orchid"

Outstanding National Small/Independent Label Recording: Howling Diablos, "Car Wash"

Outstanding Record Producer: Martin Tino Gross

Outstanding Recording Studio: Studio A

General, Cont...

Outstanding Video/Limited Budget: Detroit Women, "Rattle Your Cage"

Outstanding Video/Major Budget: Eminem, "When I’m Gone"


Outstanding Gospel Choir: Fred Hammond and Radical for Christ

Outstanding Gospel/Christian Artist/Group: Fred Hammond

Outstanding Gospel/Christian Musician: Bob Meyer/St. Thomas More Choir

Outstanding Gospel/Christian Recording: J Moss, "The J Moss Project"

Outstanding Gospel/Christian Songwriter: Sonnie Day

Outstanding Gospel/Christian Vocalist: J Moss


Outstanding Jazz Composer: Jeremy Kittel

Outstanding Jazz Instrumentalist: Alexander Zonjic

Outstanding Jazz Recording: Jeremy Kittel, "Jazz Violin"

Outstanding Jazz Vocalist: Jesse Palter

Outstanding Modern Jazz Artist/Group: Alexander Zonjic

Outstanding Traditional Jazz Artist/Group: Hot Club of Detroit


Outstanding Alternative/Indie Artist/Group: Crud

Outstanding Hard Rock/Metal Artist/Group: Broadzilla

Outstanding Pop Artist/Group: Jill Jack

Outstanding Rock Artist/Group: Liz Larin

Outstanding Rock Instrumentalist: Bobby East

Outstanding Rock Recording: Liz Larin, "Wake Up, Start Dreaming"

Outstanding Rock Songwriter: Liz Larin

Outstanding Rock Vocalist: Liz Larin

Urban Funk/Hip-Hop

Outstanding Hip Hop Artist/Group: Paradime

Outstanding Hip Hop DJ: DJ House Shoes

Outstanding Hip Hop MC: Paradime

Outstanding Urban/Funk Artist/Group: Black Bottom Collective

Outstanding Urban/Funk Musician: Larry Lee

Outstanding Urban/Funk Songwriter: Nadir

Outstanding Urban/Funk Vocalist: Nadir

Outstanding Urban/Funk Hip Hop Recording: Black Bottom Collective, "People Mover"

World Music / Reggae / Ska

Outstanding Reggae/Ska Artist/Group: Ras Kente & Take No Prisoners Posse

Outstanding World Artist/Group: Orquestra Sensacional

Outstanding World Instrumentalist: James Rodriguez

Outstanding World Recording: Brazil and Beyond "Sounds of the Holidays"

Outstanding World Songwriter: Rick Matle

Outstanding World Vocalist: Pablo Ovalles

Luke Allen Hackney is a freelance writer. Send comments to [email protected]
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