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Prine wins big Americana honor

Wednesday, September 13, 2017 – John Prine won the big award at the Americana Awards show in Nashville on Wednesday, Entertainer of the Year.

"I've been waiting for this award for awhile," Prine joked, referring to the entertainer honor.

Sturgill Simpson won Album of the Year for "A Sailor's Guide to Earth." Simpson was on tour and could not attend the ceremony.

Rodney Crowell won the Song of the Year Award for "It Ain't Over Yet." Crowell was unable to attend the ceremony as well.

Marty Stuart and His Fabulous Superlatives won the Group/Duo of the Year honor.

Amanda Shires took home the Emerging Artist of the Year Award. In addition to playing with husband Jason Isbell, she has her own solo career. The two performed together during the awards show.

Guitarist Charlie Sexton won the Instrumentalist of the Year Award. "I'm still in shock to be considered with everyone here," he said. "Honestly, the Buddy Miller Award is the best award you could ever get."

A number of music people received special awards. Larry Sloven and Bruce Bromberg received the Jack Emerson Life Achievement Award for Executive. They were the founders of the late blues and country label, Hightone Records.

Graham Nash won the Spirit of Americana, Free Speech Award. The Hi Rhythm Section took the Lifetime Achievement Award. Robert Cray Band won the Lifetime Achievement Award in Performance. "Thank you very much, but I think there's been a mistake," Cray joked. "A lifetime achievement for a 19 year old? Give me a break."

Van Morrison won the Lifetime Achievement Award for Songwriter.

Iris Dement won the honor Trailblazer award. She also performed with Prine.

Performers included Marty Stuart, Rhiannon Giddens, Sam Outlaw, Lori McKenna, Joe Henry and Billy Bragg, Nash with the Milk Carton Kids, the Drive-By Truckers, Aaron Lee Tasjan, The Lumineers, Hurray for the Riff Raff.

The awards show is part of Americanafest, now underway in Nashville through Saturday. The 18th annual festival is presented by the Americana Music Association.

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Mortality is very much on the mind of John Prine on this, his first album of all-new songs in 13 years. Understandably. After all, this is a man who has survived lung cancer and squamous cell cancer, the latter of which took a toll on his vocal cords. He's also had two knee replacements and a hip replacement. "All the TSA guys know me," jokes the legendary 71-year-old singer-songwriter. There are odes to the Almighty ("Boundless Love") and reflections on human limitations »»»
For Better, Or Worse CD review - For Better, Or Worse
With "For Better or Worse," John Prine follows up his "In Spite of Ourselves" album with more male/female duets. And this one is a true A-list effort, as it finds Prine trading lines with the likes of Miranda Lambert, Kacey Musgraves and Alison Krauss. Once again, though, Iris DeMent steals the show with the angry and sarcastic "Who's Gonna Take the Garbage Out," the same way she did with the prior album's title cut. She's a worthy sparring partner, »»»
In Person & On Stage CD review - In Person & On Stage
John Prine holds a well-deserved spot in the songwriters' pantheon. So, it's always a bit disappointing when a new Prine release isn't stocked with new Prine songs. After producing 7 albums between 1971-1980, he has only made a handful of albums of originals since then, although he has done a couple covers projects, the "Souvenirs" re-recordings album, a Christmas disc and now his third live album. That said, there are bountiful joys in listening to Prine performing »»»
Editorial: Walking the talk – When names like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Waylon and the Hag are invoked, you're talking hard core country. These are the touchstones of country , the guys who made country music what it was and still is (or maybe can be). When these folks would sing about being down-and-out and the rough-and-tumble, they knew of what they were singing about. Fast forward a few years to the country singers of today. »»»
Concert Review: Henry comes out the other end a better man – Joe Henry mentioned at the outset that this show was not only the record release celebration, but also the anniversary - to the day - of when he was diagnosed with prostate cancer. Although the songs from this fine new album do not address his illness directly, they many times touch upon the big issues of human existence (life, death and the meaning of it all).... »»»
Concert Review: What's in a name? Strings lives up to it – Billy Strings may not be his real name, but the bluegrass performer more than lives up to his adopted moniker. Bluegrass may not be the first style of music when one thinks of William Apostol's (yup, that's Billy's real name) home state of Michigan, but with more miles on the bus and shows like this outstanding, lengthy, lyrical night... »»»
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