Grammy Changes Reflect Growth of Americana Music

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• June 3, 2009

amaIn what Americana Music Association Executive Director Jed Hilly calls a “huge shift in the musical landscape,” The Recording Academy announced today that it has changed the name of the Grammy Awards “Folk Field” to the “American Roots Music Field.” The newly renamed Field will now include the Best Traditional Blues Album, Best Contemporary Blues Album and Best Bluegrass Album categories.

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AMA Exec. Director Jed Hilly

NARAS has also divided the Grammy category for Best Contemporary Folk/Americana Album into two categories: Best Contemporary Folk Album and Best Americana Album.

MusicRow spoke with Hilly about the significance of today’s news. “This is recognition of the growing popularity and strength of Americana music,” he said. “It is exactly what we’ve been fighting for and trying to tell the world for 10 years.”

The Americana Music Association will host its 10th annual Festival & Conference Sept. 16-19 at the Nashville Convention Center and premier venues throughout the city. More than 12,000 fans, artists and industry professionals are expected at the event. The Music Festival will feature approximately 75 showcase or performance slots for both established and emerging artists, while the Conference will include numerous educational panels, seminars and more.

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In other Nashville-related NARAS news, award-winning music video director/producer George Flanigen was elected Chair of the Board of Trustees. Music supervisor/composer/film music executive Doug Frank was elected Vice Chair, and engineer/producer Glenn Lorbecki was elected Secretary/Treasurer at its annual spring Trustees meeting. Outgoing Chair of the Board and five-time GRAMMY® winner Jimmy Jam will become Chair Emeritus.

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Sarah Skates is Sr. News Editor of MusicRow Enterprises. Now in her tenth year with the company, she contributes to musicrow.com and the print magazine. She welcomes your inquiries to sskates@musicrow.com. Please send press releases, photos, and news items to news@musicrow.com.

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