By Gabe Meline
"John Courage! John? Are you here, John?"
As guest presenter Steve Jaxon from KSRO's 'The Drive' wondered where the winner for best Country/Americana artist in the seventh annual NorBay Awards could possibly be, certain in-the-know friends started announcing that John Courage was, in fact, on tour. Certain others started wondering if anyone had his cell phone number. Within a matter of seconds, someone's phone was held close to the stage microphone as Courage, somewhere off I-10, gave a speech to the cheering crowd.
"I'm out here in Lafayette, Louisiana, in a hotel room," he said, "and this is a real honor and a surprise. Thanks for voting for me."
Okay, so it wasn't a live satellite broadcast, but that's what makes the North Bay Music Awards special—not to mention live sets by The Easy Leaves and Crazy Famous (above), and acceptance speeches by nearly all of this year's winners. Over 2,000 fans participated in the voting this year, and ushered in another slate of honorees who went home proudly clinging gold record awards. Thanks to the Hopmonk Tavern for hosting, and thanks to all the nominees for making this area a goldmine for good music.
On to the winners!
Blues/R&B–The SoulShine Blues Band; Country/Americana–John Courage; Dance/DJ–DJ Malarkey; Folk/Acoustic–The Easy Leaves; Hip-Hop–The 808 Band; Jazz–Plectrum Duo; Indie/Punk–The Velvet Teen; Rock–Crazy Famous; World/Reggae–Midnight Sun.
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