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17th Maple Blues Awards Nominees

Posted: November 7, 2013

The Toronto Blues Society will be celebrating the 17th annual Maple Blues Awards by honouring nationally and internationally recognized Canadian blues artists from across the country on January 20, 2014. The nominees are recognized both for their talent as well as their contribution to the growing Canadian blues music scene. 

Voting is open from midnight Newfoundland Daylight Time on November 1, 2013, through midnight Pacific Standard Time on December 7, 2013. Blues fans can cast their votes online at

Ottawa, Ontario trio MonkeyJunk lead the way with nominations in six categories, Toronto’s The 24th Street Wailers and Yukon-based bluesman Brandon Isaak each with three. Quebec blues artists are well represented with nominations for Nanette Workman, Ben Racine, Dawn Tyler Watson, Paul Deslaurier and Guy Bélanger to name a few. British Columbia’s thriving blues scene is represented with nominations for The Harpoonist & The Axe Murderer, James “Buddy” Rogers, David Vest, David Gogo and Kenny “Blues Boss” Wayne.

Tickets for the Maple Blues Awards, held at the Royal Conservatory's Koerner Hall in Toronto, are on sale now for $35 - $65 and can be purchased at The Weston Family Box Office, located in The Royal Conservatory building at 273 Bloor Street West, Toronto, by phone at RCM box office (416) 408-0208 or online at .

Toronto Blues Society is a non-profit membership organization dedicated to the promotion and preservation of the Blues. The Maple Blues Awards is Canada's national blues awards program. Its goal is to promote blues music across Canada, and to recognize outstanding achievement in the field.

The Royal Conservatory's magnificent concert hall, Koerner Hall is designed in the tradition of the classic “shoebox” venues of Europe. Recognized as being among the world’s greatest concert halls, the Toronto Star has called it "the best concert venue in Toronto." 

The 17th Annual Maple Blues Awards Nominees:

Entertainer of the Year
The 24th Street Wailers – MonkeyJunk - Shakura S'Aida - Steve Strongman - The Harpoonist & The Axe Murderer

Electric Act of the Year
The 24th Street Wailers - Bill Durst - David Gogo – MonkeyJunk - Soulstack

Acoustic Act of the Year
Brandon Isaak - Dawn Tyler Watson and Paul Deslauriers - Harrison Kennedy - Little Miss Higgins - Michael Jerome Browne

Male Vocalist of the Year
Bob Walsh - Charlie A'Court - Donald Ray Johnson - Harrison Kennedy - Jim Byrnes

Female Vocalist of the Year
Angel Forrest - Dawn Tyler Watson - Layla Zoe - Shakura S'aida - Treasa Levasseur

New Artist or Group of the Year
Brant Parker Blues Band - Declan O'Donovan - Denis Viel - James “Buddy” Rogers - The Mackenzie Blues Band 

Recording/Producer of the Year
All Frequencies - MonkeyJunk - Stony Plain
East Meets Vest - David Vest - Ark-O-Matic (co-produced by Gary Kendall)
Everybody Ought To Treat A Stranger Right - Julian Fauth - Electro-Fi
Mother Tongue Blues - Angel Forrest - Morningstar
One of A Kind - Ben Racine Band - Iguane

B.B. King International Artist of the Year
James Cotton - Dr. John - Mavis Staples - Tedeschi Trucks Band - Trampled Under Foot

Guitarist of the Year
David Gogo - Kevin Breit - Paul Deslauriers - Steve Strongman - Tony D 

Harmonica Player of the Year
Carlos Del Junco - David Rotundo - Guy Belanger - Shawn Hall - Steve Marriner

Piano/Keyboard Player of the Year
David Vest - Graham Guest - Julian Fauth - Kenny "Blues Boss" Wayne - Lance Anderson

Horn Player of the Year
Al Lerman - Chris Whiteley - Frank Thiffault - Jon Wong - Shirley Jackson

Drummer of the Year
Bucky Berger - Chris Nordquist - Dave King - Sam Harrisson - Tom Bona 

Bassist of the Year
Alec Fraser - Gary Kendall - Keith Picot - Omar Tunnoch - Russell Jackson

Songwriter of the Year
Brandon Isaak - Charlie A'Court - Harrison Kennedy - Julian Fauth - MonkeyJunk/Steve Marriner, Matt Sobb and Tony Diteodoro

Blues With A Feeling Award
(Lifetime Achievement)

Alec Fraser - Michael Jerome Browne - Danny Brooks - Ellen McIlwaine - Joe Murphy - Ken Whiteley - Michael Fonfara -
Stephen Barry - Tom Lavin - Brent Parkin - Bob Walsh - Jim Zeller - Nanette Workman - Theresa Malenfant - John Dickie

For more information contact:
Sarah French/ Sarah French Publicity

Alice Sellwood / Toronto Blues Society