This past weekend, May 27-29, was the Hamilton Music Awards. It includes two awards shows, a speaker series, and a live music festival. The first awards show, the Gala Awards, was held on Saturday afternoon at the Bay City Music Hall. The second, the 2016 Hamilton Music Awards, was held on Sunday evening at the Dofasco Centre for the Arts. Both events were hosted by Ian Thomas.
At the Gala Awards, rock band Monster Truck won five awards, McMaster University radio station CFMU won four, and radio broadcaster Lou Molinaro won two awards for himself and two for his club This Ain’t Hollywood. The Female Vocalist and Canadian Recording of the Year awards went to pop artist Terra Lightfoot and Luke Doucet from indie band Whitehorse received Guitarist of the Year.
On Saturday evening, following the Gala Awards, the Bay City Music Hall hosted a benefit/tribute concert called Life of Brian. The concert was dedicated to the memory of the late blues guitarist Brian Griffith, a well-known figure in the local music scene. It raised funds for a Brian Lee Griffith Guitar Bursary.
Performers at the Sunday evening Hamilton Music Awards include Terra Lightfoot, Lori Yates, Dallas Harms, Jennifer Budd, the Hellbent Rockers, TV Freaks, and The Vaudevillian. The two Lifetime Achievement awards went to country singer-songwriter Dallas Harms for music and concert promoter Jim Skarratt for industry. Both recipients participated in an interview conducted jointly by folk-rocker Larry LeBlanc and Hamilton Spectator music writer Graham Rochingham. It was held at the This Ain’t Hollywood club and attracted a huge audience.
The club also hosted a speaker series event on Saturday afternoon called “The Journalists: Your Most Important Fans Ever!!”. Featuring a panel of six music journalists, they discussed what they do and the best ways to attract attention. The panelists included: Ben Rayner (Toronto Star), Kerry Doole (FYI Music News), Graham Rockingham (Hamilton Spectator), Ric Taylor (The View), Lou Molinaro (CFMU), Kristen Archer (I Heart Hamilton), and Biljana Njegovan (Cut From Steel).
FYI Music News has a full list of all the award winners.