The fifth annual Madison Area Music Awards were held on Saturday night before an energetic crowd of local musicians and their fans at the Barrymore Theatre. Winners in more than 40 categories of artists, albums, and songs were named at the live show, which featured performances by Dear August, Stephanie Rearick, Westside Andy/Mel Ford Band, The Motorz, The Jessi Lynn Band, Profound with Lil' Braugh, and Pale Young Gentlemen with a string quartet composed of musicians from Madison schools.
Supporting music education for younger students in the Madison area is the charitable focus of the MAMAs, with this awards show serving as the organization's primary annual fundraiser. The 2008 awards were determined through a three round process of submissions, nominations, and the final vote, with local musicians sharing their own and voting on their peers' entries through an online system donated and operated by Broadjam, a music promotions company based in Madison.
The big winner of the night was Robert J., who took home a slew of awards for both his solo work as well as with his band the Rowdy Prairie Dogs. Other multiple winners included JAH Boogie's Natty Nation, Clear Blue Betty, Randal Harrison, Ben Johnston-Urey, Felicia Alima, Mark Croft, Mud Angels, and The Gomers.
The complete list of 2008 MAMAs winners follows.
The SpareTime Bluegrass Band
Laura England (TIE)
Jessi Lynn (TIE)
The Sharp & Harkins Band
Tracy Jane Comer
Clear Blue Betty
JAH Boogie's Natty Nation
Westside Andy/Mel Ford Band -- Alley Cat
Ben Johnston-Urey -- Travelogue
Urban Theatre -- My Music: The Best of the Urban Theater Vol. 1
Rowdy Prairie Dogs -- The Revenge of the Rowdy Prairie Dogs
Null Device -- Excursions
Dear August -- Come In, Keep Dry
Harris Lemberg -- Lost In My Own Little World
Mark Croft -- Permanent Ink EP
Robert J. -- A Beautiful Blur
The Gomers -- Mike Zirkel: The Album
Know Boundaries -- Live 7.14.2007 @ UW Terrace
JAH Boogie's Natty Nation -- Seth's Picks - Best Of LIVE 2003-2006
Mud Angels -- "You Sang My Note"
Ben Johnston-Urey Aravali -- "Suite, III: Dusk in the Thar Desert"
Rowdy Prairie Dogs -- "Loved Like That"
The Dorothy Heralds -- "What Goes Up"
Rowdy Prairie Dogs -- "Home Movies"
Clear Blue Betty -- "Say My Name"
Robert J. -- "A Room With A View"
The Lucas Cates Band -- "Man on The Corner"
The Gomers -- "Crime Scene"
dumate -- "Juke Joint"
JAH Boogie's Natty Nation -- "Hurricane"
Meritorious Achievement Award
Michael St. John Lifetime Achievement Award
People's Choice Categories
Entertainer of the Year
JAH Boogie's Natty Nation
Cover Band of the Year
Local Music Record Store of the Year
B-Side Records (TIE)
Exclusive Company (TIE)
Live Music Venue of the Year
High Noon Saloon
Local Music Radio Station of the Year
Local Radio Personality of the Year
Wish You Were Here Award
The fun didn't end with the awards show, however, as the MAMAs continue through Saturday night and into Mother's Day morning with four after-parties. Westside Andy/Mel Ford Band play at the Harmony Bar; Pale Young Gentlemen and Dear August at Mr. Roberts; Harmonious Wail at the Brink Lounge; and The Motorz, The Treats, and The Shabelles close out the festivities at the downtown Great Dane. Here's to five more years of the MAMAs.
Rich Albertoni and Kristian Knutsen contributed to this report.