Rhonda Vincent & the Rage Score 11 IBMA Nominations

Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver Claim Nine Nominations for Bluegrass Awards

With a collective total of 11 nominations, Rhonda Vincent and members of her band, the Rage, lead the field at the 2007 International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) awards. Additionally, two pioneering musicians — Howard Watts (also known as Cedric Rainwater) and Carl Story — were announced as this year’s inductees into the Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame.

The announcements were made Thursday morning (Aug. 16) at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville. Sam Bush will host the Oct. 4 awards show at the Grand Ole Opry House.

Vincent and her bandmates garnered nominations for entertainer of the year, vocal group and female vocalist. Their All American Bluegrass Girl is up for album of the year, and the title track is nominated for song of the year. Band member Hunter Berry, nominated in the fiddle player field, also saw his debut release, Wow Baby, nominated in the instrumental album and recorded event of the year categories. Mickey Harris is nominated for bass player of the year, and banjo player Kenny Ingram is nominated for recorded event of the year for his contributions to Tony Trischka’s Double Banjo Bluegrass Spectacular. Vincent received a nomination in the recorded event division for her work on Jerry Salley’s New Songs, Old Friends.

Doyle Lawson and members of his band, Quicksilver, racked up a total of nine nominations. Scoring seven nominations each are Alison Krauss & Union Station Featuring Jerry Douglas, the Del McCoury Band and Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder.

Watts was known as Cedric Rainwater in the late 1940s when he played bass in the classic lineup of Bill Monroe & his Blue Grass Boys, a group that also included guitarist Lester Flatt, banjo player Earl Scruggs and fiddler Chubby Wise. He later worked in Hank Williams’ band, the Drifting Cowboys. Watts died in 1970.

Story, a guitarist, fiddler and vocalist who died in 1995, is known as the father of bluegrass gospel music. He worked in a South Carolina-based band, the Lonesome Mountaineers, in the 1930s before joining Monroe’s band as a fiddler in 1942. He began his recording career in 1947 on Mercury Records and later recorded for Columbia, Starday and several smaller labels.

The IBMA also announced this year’s recipients of the organization’s Distinguished Achievement Award, which recognizes individuals who have fostered bluegrass music’s image with developments that broaden the genre’s recognition and accessibility. Among this year’s recipients is Dobro legend Mike Auldridge, a founding member of the Seldom Scene. Other honorees include The Bluegrass Breakdown (a publication of the California Bluegrass Association), Czech bluegrass pioneer Marko Cermak and California event producer and philanthropist Warren Hellman. Happy and Jane Traum will receive the award in recognition of their company, Homespun Tapes, and its continuing series of bluegrass instructional tapes, CDs and videos.

Several IBMA nominees attended Thursday’s press conference. Bush welcomed the crowd, telling the audience that the awards ceremony always thrives on musical integrity — although with his boundless energy, he is clearly eager to make it a fun night as host. Doyle Lawson revealed the inductees into the Bluegrass Hall of Fame, while Del McCoury and Dale Ann Bradley animatedly listed the nominees. To brighten the press conference, the Infamous Stringdusters performed two songs prior to the announcements, and one more to close out the morning.

Here’s a complete list of this year’s IBMA nominees:

Entertainer of the Year

The Grascals
Alison Krauss & Union Station Featuring Jerry Douglas
Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver
Del McCoury Band
Rhonda Vincent & the Rage

Vocal Group
Blue Highway
The Isaacs
Alison Krauss & Union Station Featuring Jerry Douglas
Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver
Rhonda Vincent & the Rage

Instrumental Group
Blue Highway
Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper Featuring Audie Blaylock
Alison Krauss & Union Station Featuring Jerry Douglas
Del McCoury Band
Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder

Male Vocalist
Ronnie Bowman
Russell Moore
Tim O’Brien
Larry Sparks
Bradley Walker

Female Vocalist
Dale Ann Bradley
Sonya Isaacs
Alison Krauss
Claire Lynch
Rhonda Vincent

Song of the Year
“All American Bluegrass Girl”
Artist: Rhonda Vincent
Songwriter: Rhonda Vincent

“Fork in the Road”
Artist: The Infamous Stringdusters
Songwriters: Chris Jones and John Pennell

“Lefty’s Old Guitar”
Artist: J.D. Crowe & the New South
Songwriters: Dave Maggard and Jack Spencer

“Sadie’s Got Her New Dress On”
Artist: Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver
Songwriter: Connie Leigh

“The Last Suit You Wear”
Artist: Larry Sparks
Songwriters: Larry Shell, Larry Williams and Kim Williams

Album of the Year
All American Bluegrass Girl
Rhonda Vincent

Fork in the Road
The Infamous Stringdusters

Lefty’s Old Guitar
J.D. Crowe & the New South

More Behind the Picture Than the Wall
Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver

The Last Suit You Wear
Larry Sparks

Recorded Event

Vassar Clements, Tony Rice and the Low Country All-Star Band
Vassar Clements, Tony Rice and the Low Country All-Star Band

Double Banjo Bluegrass Spectacular
Tony Trischka with Earl Scruggs, Kenny Ingram, Tom Adams, Bela Fleck, Noam Pikelny, Alison Brown, Scott Vestal, Steve Martin and Bill Emerson

New Songs, Old Friends
Jerry Salley with Vince Gill, Doyle Lawson, Bryan Sutton, Oak Ridge Boys, Darryl Worley, Adam Steffey, Jamie Johnson, Lisa Shaffer, Rob Ickes, Del McCoury, Sonya Isaacs, David Talbot, Rhonda Vincent, Carl Jackson, Stuart Duncan, Larry Cordle, Keith Sewell, Wendy Sewell, Ben Isaacs, Alecia Nugent, Ricky Skaggs and Sharon White

Ricky Skaggs & Bruce Hornsby
Ricky Skaggs and Bruce Hornsby

Wow Baby
Hunter Berry with Tony Rice, Doyle Lawson, Dan Tyminski, Marty Stuart, Bobby Osborne, Bryan Sutton, Adam Steffey, Jason Carter, Buck White, Sally Sandker, Sonya Isaacs, Keith Williams, Rhonda Vincent, Buddy Spicher, Ronnie Stewart, Darrin Vincent, Bob Moore and Tom Roady

Instrumental Album
Acoustic Rising
Mark Johnson and Emory Lester

Double Banjo Bluegrass Spectacular
Tony Trischka

Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder

No Apologies
Jim VanCleve

Wow Baby
Hunter Berry

Gospel Recorded Performance
“Did You Forget God Today”
The Grascals

“He Lives in Me”
Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver

Tell Someone
Kenny & Amanda Smith Band

The Promised Land
Del McCoury Band

“We Shall Inherit”
Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver

Emerging Artist
Cadillac Sky
Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper Featuring Audie Blaylock
The Infamous Stringdusters
Bradley Walker
Williams & Clark Expedition

Instrumental Performers

Cia Cherryholmes
J.D. Crowe
Jim Mills
Sammy Shelor
Tony Trischka

Barry Bales
Mike Bub
Mickey Harris
Missy Raines
Marshall Wilborn

Hunter Berry
Michael Cleveland
Stuart Duncan
Ron Stewart
Jim VanCleve

Mike Auldridge
Jerry Douglas
Rob Ickes
Randy Kohrs
Phil Leadbetter

Jim Hurst
Tony Rice
Kenny Smith
Larry Sparks
Bryan Sutton

Sam Bush
Doyle Lawson
Ronnie McCoury
Adam Steffey
Chris Thile

Bluegrass Broadcaster

Kyle Cantrell, XM Satellite Radio
Chris Jones, Sirius Satellite Radio
Ned Luberecki, Sirius Satellite Radio

Print Media Person
Aaron Keith Harris, National Review Online, Baltimore Examiner News, Lonesome Road Review blog

John Lawless and Brance Gillihan, The Bluegrass Blog

Chris Stuart, Bluegrass Unlimited

Best Liner Notes for a Recorded Project
Writers: Barry Poss and Jay Orr
Sugar Hill Records: A Retrospective

Writers: Peter K. Siegel, John Cohen and Jody Stecher
Friends of Old Time Music: The Folk Arrival 1961-1965

Writer: Gary Reid
Don Reno & Red Smiley and the Tennessee Cut-Ups, 1959-1963

Best Graphic Design for a Recorded Project

Designer: Don Bailey
Hillbilly Hemingway, Mark Newton Band

Designer: Sue Meyer
Sugar Hill Records: A Retrospective

Designer: Visual Dialogue
Friends of Old Time Music: The Folk Arrival 1961-1965

Bluegrass Event
33rd Festival of the Bluegrass (Lexington, Ky.)

The Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival (Ancramdale, N.Y.)

Pickin’ in the Sticks: The 27th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass and Old-Time Music Festival (St. Cloud, Minn.)