IBMA Award Nominees Announced in Owensboro

Owensboro, Ky. The final list of nominees has been announced for the 10th Anniversary International Bluegrass Music Awards, scheduled to take place October 21, at the historic Palace Theater in Louisville, Kentucky.

Artists receiving the most nominations include four finalists for Entertainer of the Year: The Del McCoury Band, The Lonesome River Band, Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder and IIIrd Tyme Out.

Reigning Entertainers of the Year, The Del McCoury Band, received eleven nominations. The group and members picked up nominations for Entertainer of the Year, Vocal Group, Instrumental Group, Male Vocalist (Del McCoury), Album of the Year (The Family), Banjo Player (Rob McCoury), Bass Player (Mike Bub), Fiddle Player (Jason Carter), Mandolin Player (Ronnie McCoury), Recorded Event of the Year (The Mountain with Steve Earle), and Recorded Event of the Year (Mac, Doc & Del, Sugar Hill Records: Mac Wiseman, Doc Watson and Del McCoury).

The Lonesome River Band also garnered eleven IBMA nominations. The band and members are nominated for Entertainer of the Year, Vocal Group of the Year, Instrumental Group of the Year, Male Vocalist (Ronnie Bowman), Song of the Year ("Three Rusty Nails," from Bowman's The Man I'm Tryin' To Be, Sugar Hill) Gospel Recorded Performance of the Year ("Three Rusty Nails"), Banjo Player (Sammy Shelor), Guitar Player (Kenny Smith), and Recorded Event for Dear Friends And Gentle Hearts with Suzanne Thomas (Rounder).

In a unusual twist for Album of the Year nominations, the Lonesome River Band's Finding The Way will compete with lead singer Ronnie Bowman's The Man I'm Tryin' To Be, both on the Sugar Hill label.

Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder received ten nominations. The group has received nods for Entertainer of the Year, Instrumental Group, Male Vocalist (Ricky Skaggs), Album of the Year (Ancient Tones), Song of the Year for "The Walls Of Time"), Instrumental Album of the Year (Jim Mills' Bound To Ride, on Sugar Hill), Banjo Player (Jim Mills), Fiddle Player (Bobby Hicks), and Mandolin Player (Ricky Skaggs). Skaggs is also nominated for Recorded Event of the Year for his work on Clinch Mountain Country (Rebel) with Ralph Stanley & Friends.

IIIrd Tyme Out, winners of Vocal Group every year since 1994, have received seven nominations. The groups' nominations include Entertainer of the Year, Vocal Group, Male Vocalist (Russell Moore), Song of the Year ("What Was I Supposed To Do," from Live At The MAC), Mandolin Player (Wayne Benson), and Recorded Event for their work with Suzanne Thomas on Dear Friends And Gentle Hearts (Rounder). Benson also picked up another nomination for his part in Bluegrass '98 (Pinecastle Records) for Instrumental Album of the Year.

Blue Highway picked up three nominations for Entertainer of he Year, Instrumental Group of the Year and Dobro Player (Rob Ickes). Laurie Lewis was nominated for Female Vocalist and twice for Recorded Event of the Year for Clinch Mountain Country (Rebel) with Ralph Stanley & Friends, and Dear Friends And Gentle Hearts (Rounder) with Suzanne Thomas. The Nashville Bluegrass Band was nominated for Vocal Group, Fiddle Player (Stuart Duncan), and Recorded Event of the Year (Alan O'Bryant, for Home Sweet Home with Doc & Merle Watson on Sugar Hill).

The awards ceremony for the 1999 International Bluegrass Music Awards will be broadcast by radio around the world to more than 300 U.S. markets and 14 foreign networks, thanks to support from BellSouth. The awards are voted on by the professional membership of the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA), which serves as the music's trade organization.