44th Annual Blues Music Awards in Memphis
Top Winners Include:
John Németh, Buddy Guy & Albert Castiglia
Tommy Castro Wins B.B. King Entertainer of the Year
Tom Hambridge Wins ‘Song of the Year’
MEMPHIS, TN. —The Renasant Convention Center was packed with blues musicians, fans, and music-world luminaries on May 11th, anxious to see who would be the winners at the 44th Annual Blues Music Awards. Besides awarding honors in 25 categories, the BMAs, as is its tradition, featured performances from many nominees, with the gala ending in a jubilant all-star jam.
The evening’s top award winners were Buddy Guy, Albert Castiglia John Németh, each earning two BMAs. Buddy Guy’s The Blues Don’t Lie picked up Album of the Year and Contemporary Blues Album. Albert Castiglia won Blues Rock Album as well as Blues Rock Artist, and John Németh’s May be the Last Time nabbed Traditional Blues Album; Németh was also awarded instrumentalist Harmonica.
For the 4th consecutive year, Christone “Kingfish” Ingram – took home Contemporary Blues Male Artist. Holding on to their BMA crowns for two consecutive years were Tommy Castro – B.B. King Entertainer of the Year; Albert Castiglia – Blues Rock Artist; Danielle Nicole – Instrumentalist Bass, Curtis Salgado – Soul Blues Male Artist and Sue Foley – Traditional Blues Female Artist (Koko Taylor Award).
Reclaiming their BMA crowns were: Ruthie Foster – Contemporary Blues Female, Kenny “Beedy Eyes” Smith – Instrumentalist Drums, Deanna Bogart – Instrumentalist Horn, Anthony Geraci – Instrumentalist Piano (Pinetop Perkins Piano Player), John Primer – Traditional Blues Male Artist, Doug Macleod – Acoustic Artist, Tedeschi Trucks – Band of the Year, Albert Castiglia Blues Rock Album and Tom Hambridge – Song of the Year.
BMA Veterans winning for the first time in a new category were: Charlie Musselwhite, Mississippi Son – Acoustic Album, Sugaray Rayford, In Too Deep – Soul Blues Album, Shemekia Copeland – Instrumentalist Vocals, John Nemeth, May be the Last Time – Traditional Blues Album and Instrumentalist Harmonica.
Joining Club BMA for the first time were Laura Chavez – Instrumentalist Guitar, Thornetta Davis – Soul Blues Female, and Dylan Triplett, Who is He? – Best Emerging Artist Album.
Traditional Blues Male Artist Winner John Primer performs for the crowd at the 2023 Blues Music Awards in Memphis, TN.
Photo by Joseph A. Rosen