Announcement of nominations for LA Music Critic Awards for the second half of 2018 (updated)

It’s finally here.  We are so proud to announce this amazing list of nominations for the LA Music Critic Awards for the second half of 2018.  We culled through 461 CDs and EPs from around the globe, and an equal number of singles and music videos to create what we believe is one of the most diverse group of musicians in the world.

The committee votes on all nominations except the Fan Favorite, where you the reader get to choose your favorite performer.  In order to vote, you must leave a comment below.  Votes left on social media do not count.  The deadline for voting is December 28, and the winners of the awards will be announced on January 4, 2019.  Please remember that you cannot nominate an artist who has already won this award.

Without further adieu, here are the nominations:

BEST EP (Male) – Wolfe Jackson (Nobody Knows Me (Better Than You)); Trevor Douglas (Four in the Morning), Zach Callison (A Picture Perfect Hollywood Heartbreak), Ben de la Cour (The High Cost of Living Strange), Alex Riddle (Snow White)

BEST EP (Female) – Frankie Simone (Love Warrior); Mariel Austin (Runner in the Rain); Lauren Jaimes (Here to Stay), Leslie Nuss (The Album V)

BEST EP (Group) – Shelby Texas (We are Shelby, Texas); Small Million (Young Fools); Paper Gliders (Trials), Heartspank (II), PublicArt (Modernika), Neverwonder (self-titled)

BEST EP (International Artist) – Paolo Preite (An Eye on the World); Jon Mullane (Singles); Valerio Lysander (We are Like Colored Moths Towards the Sunlight); Matty T Wall (Sidewinder); Abby Zotz (Local Honey)

BEST EP (International Group) – Delta Will (Multitudes I); The Fisherman & The Sea (I Can’t Alone); CAP ON. (Be Better Than Jeff), thisquietarmy (The Body and the Earth), The Spanish Flies (Good Things Come to Those Who Wait)

BEST CD (Male) – Slim Gambill (Fake Jazz); Doran Danoff (King of Crown City); Ken Sharp (Beauty in the Backseat); Jeffrey Foucault (War on the Radio); Jordan Siwek (Sun Inside You); Hadden Sayers (Dopamine Machine)

BEST CD (Female) – Deb Ryder (Enjoy the Ride); Rachel Sage (Myopia); Tammie Shannon (All of Me); Bridget Rios Purdy (Still I Rise); Gina Sicilia (Heard the Lie); K. Michelle Dubois (Autumn)

BEST CD (Group) – The Furious Seasons (Now Residing Abroad); Broken Bellows (I, Kaleidoscope); Post Season (self-titled); Birds and Arrows (Arbitrary Magic); The Dream Logic (Liquid Sunshine)

BEST CD (International Artist) – Leeroy (Burn to Ashes), Dustin Tebbutt (Chasing Gold), Kate Reid (The Heart Already Knows), Hollie Haines (Letters to my Last Love), Zsuzsika (Start Again)

BEST CD (International Group) – Hymn for Her (Pop-n-Downers); VNV Nation (Noire); Neville & Sugary Staple (Rude Rebels); Crack of Dawn (self-titled); Norway Reloaded (My Longest Mile)

BEST VIDEO (OFFICIAL) (Male) – Michael Peterson (“From Here to Eternity”), Colin Devlin (“High Point”), Kramies (“The Hill Dweller”), Everlast (“Don’t Complain”), Van Bobbi (“Kickdrum Heartbeat”), **Jason Robert/Stone Stanley (“Mr. Bell”)** Inadvertently left off list

BEST VIDEO (OFFICIAL) (Female) – Alana Sweetwater (“Gotta Get Up”), Nuela Charles (“Danger”), Lauren Duski (“Costume Party”), Tiffany Young (“Teach You”), Dree Mon (“Dance Like I Want To”)

BEST VIDEO (OFFICIAL) (Group) – Satellite Citi (“Collide”), Fanny Walked the Earth (“When we Need Her”), The Guess Who (“Playin on the Radio”), Honey River (“Peace, Love”), Roan Yellowthorn (“Talk About It”), JP Soars (“Southbound I-95”)

BEST VIDEO (FOR A CAUSE) – Lora Kelley (“Good Men Don’t Hurt You”), Kim Kline (“Stand Tall”), No Small Children (“I’m so Concerned”), Sofia Evangelina (“This is Your Song”), Aijia (“For You”), Various Artists (“Let’s Rise”)

BEST VIDEO (LYRIC) – Smoke Season (“Sweetest Thing”), Stephen Michael Murphy (“Why”), Post Season (“Numb to This”), Rachel Eckroth (“Call my Name”), Greg Laswell (“Royal Empress”), The Spider Accomplice (“Epilogue”)

BEST VIDEO (COVER) – CALICO the Band (“California Dreaming”), Rachel Eckroth (“Love is Lost”), PaperDolls (“God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen”)

BEST VIDEO (COLLABORATION) – Janiva Magness & Bryan Stephens (“Love is an Army”), Seawaves & Jerad Finck (“New Kids”), Free Love & Suzanne Roden (“Pushing Too Hard”/”July”), Defanico & Avanti (“You Make me Feel”), Cindy Alexander & Rusty Young (“My Favorite Artist”)

BEST VIDEO (INTERNATIONAL) – Constanza Herrero (“Packing Up”), Chesca (“Azucar”), Ziggy Alberts (“Stronger”), The Trouble Notes (“Grand Masquerade”), Peakes (“Still Life”)

BEST SINGLE (Male) – Rod Melancon (“Westgate”), Mike Edell (“Grow with You”), CJ Harper (“When we Rise”), Curtis Peoples (“Castaways”), Thomas Graff (“Make it Easy”)

BEST SINGLE (Female) – Amy Wilcox (“Bandwagon”), Chelsea Gill (“Ray-Bans”), Alexis Keegan (“Gospel”), Kris Angeles (“Stained Glass”), Christine Parker (“Where You Are”)

BEST SINGLE (Group) – SIGNY (“Water”), Honey River (“Peace, Love”), Only Bridges (“Ordinary”), Mustangs of the West (“T-Shirt from California”), The Textones (“20 Miles From Wrong”)

BEST SINGLE (INTERNATIONAL) – Vanessa Zamora (“Malas Amistades”), Liron (“Pina Colada”), Maya Payne (“Jungle”), Greta Jaime (“Computer Games”), Carlo & the Montes (“Nobody’s Fool”)

BEST SINGLE (HOLIDAY) – PaperDolls (“God Rest ye Merry Gentlemen”), Tiffany Young (“Peppermint”), Jack Tempchin (“Jesus and Mohammed”), Mustangs of the West (“Everybody Wants Peace on Earth”)

BEST BLUES ARTIST – Gina Sicilia, Brigette Rios Purdy, Hadden Sayers, Katie Knipp, Kirk Fletcher

BEST BLUES BAND – Detroit Rebellion, Black Cat Road, Michelle D’Amour and the Love Dealers, Keith Stone and Red Gravy, JP Soars

BEST BLUES (TRADITIONAL) ARTIST – Tammie Shannon, Tom Hambridge, Wily Bo Walker, Lawrence Lebo, Deb Ryder, Jonathon Long

BEST BLUES (TRADITIONAL) BAND – Peter V Blues Train, Delta Moon, Karen Lawrence and Blue by Nature, Matheus Matthews, Julianne Q and the Howl

BEST BLUEGRASS ARTIST/BAND – Roland White, Tellico

BEST CHILDREN’S ALBUM – Ruth and Emilia (The Spaceship That Fell in my Backyard)

BEST COMEBACK ARTIST – Mustangs of the West, The Textones, Frank Bey, Buddy Guy

BEST COMEDY ALBUM – Brad Wenzel (Sweet Nothings)

BEST COMPILATION ALBUMCome See About Me (IBMA Trust Fund), A Blue Élan Christmas (various Blue Élan Records artists)

BEST COUNTRY ARTIST – Dennis Duff, Hilary Scott, Corinne Cook, Stephanie Urbina Jones, Lauren Jaimes

BEST COUNTRY BAND – Robbie Fulks & Linda Gail Lewis, The Bob Peek Thing, Shelby Texas

BEST EDM/DANCE ARTIST/BAND – Sterling Infinity, Risky Motion, Andrew Bayer, United Ghosts, Lavender Fields, TNEO

BEST FOLK ARTIST – Paul Givant, Lauren Balthrop, Wolfe Jackson, Jason Erie, Ben Bostick

BEST FOLK BAND –   The Furious Seasons, The Skiffle Players, Max Caddy, New London Fire, Lay Low Moon

BEST HARD ROCK/METAL ARTIST/BAND – Rebel Rampage, YYNOT, Code Red Riot, Cosmogyral, Lana Blac

BEST HIP-HOP/RAP ARTIST/BAND – Everlast

BEST HOLIDAY ALBUM – The Humming Bards (Holy Common Grounds); Redhead Express/PaperDolls (Christmastime); Mindi Abair and the Boneshakers (All I Got for Christmas is the Blues); Paul Cardall (Christmas)

BEST INTERNATIONAL ARTIST – Solomon Grey, Dave Wells, Jon Mullane, Abby Zotz, Mac Murray

BEST INTERNATIONAL BAND – Monsta X, Ace of Wands, Koenix, Crack of Dawn, Norway Reloaded

BEST INSTRUMENTAL ARTIST/BAND – Andrew Abaria, Rob McAllister/Music Within, Daniel Aged, Lucky 757, Tauk

BEST JAZZ ARTIST – Mariel Austin, Walt Weiskopf, Calvin Arsenia, Slim Gambill, Leo James Conroy

BEST JAZZ BAND – CeCe Teneal and Soul Kamotion, Strunz & Farah, Frank Gambale Soulmine, S U M, Mark Winkler and Cheryl Bentyne

BEST LATIN ARTIST/BAND – Lauren Henderson, De’Anza, The Chamanas. Constanza Herrero

BEST LIVE ALBUM – Shari Puorto (Live at Bogie’s), Sonia Leigh (Live in London), John McLaughlin & Jimmy Herring (Live in San Francisco), Jocelyn Michelle (Live at Viva Cantina), Karen Lawrence & Blue by Nature (Best of Live)

BEST POP ARTIST – Greg Laswell, Rachel Sage, Trevor Douglas, Ken Sharp, Jordan Siwek

BEST POP BAND – Small Million, Broken Bellows, My Brothers and I, Baby Jay, Roan Yellowthorn

BEST POP/ROCK ARTIST/BAND – Daniel Ellsworth & The Great Lakes, The Persian Leaps, Coyote Choir, Teddy and the Love Gang, KT Tunstall

BEST PUNK ARTIST/BAND – Subterfuge, Castle Black, A Very Special Episode, Taco Mouth, Post Season

BEST R&B/SOUL ARTIST – Sara Marie Barron, Candace Devine, Dave Keller, Nuela Charles, Doran Danoff

BEST R&B/SOUL BAND – Down North, DaM-FunK, The Dream Logic, Diane Durrett & Soul Suga

BEST ALT ROCK ARTIST – Kayla Starr, Trevor James, Ruby Rose Fox, Scott Shifflett, Polly Panic

BEST ALT ROCK BAND – Ascent, Farewood, Static and Surrender, Birds and Arrows, The Upstart Crows

BEST ROCK ARTIST – Guilande, Eric McFadden, K. Michelle DuBois

BEST ROCK BAND – Fellow Robot, Tokyo Police Club, Animal Waves, The Guess Who, Band of Silver

BEST REGGAE ARTIST/BAND – Phony Ppl, Sean Paul, Megative

BEST ROOTS/AMERICANA ARTIST – Ian Crawford, Roger Len Smith, Lora Kelley, Andy Sydow, Jeffrey Foucault

BEST ROOTS/AMERICANA BAND – mmhmm, No Dry County, Mapache, The Textones, Lil’ Red & The Rooster

BEST SINGER-SONGWRITER – Cynthia Brando, Peggy James, Kris Angelis, Gaelynn Lea, Dave Tamkin, Paul McDonald

BEST SOUTHERN ROCK ARTIST/BAND – Sunshine Riot, Moonshine Saints

MOST UNIQUE ARTIST/BAND – Grave Danger, Bella Bartok

RISING STAR – Shaunt Avakian, Hayley Lynn, Sofia Evangelina, CH3LS, Sarra, Bella Rios

745 thoughts on “Announcement of nominations for LA Music Critic Awards for the second half of 2018 (updated)”

    1. Jonathon long for best traditional blues cause he is the performers performer best guitar slinger and showman! Singer and writer!

  1. -Best CD – International group – Reloaded Norway – My Longest Mile
    -Best International Band – Reloaded Norway

  2. -Best CD – International group – Reloaded Norway – My Longest Mile
    -Best International Band – Reloaded Norway

  3. Thank you for considering Karen Lawrence and Blue By Nature for nominations in the blues categories. This is such an impressive list of artists. Congratulations to all nominees and to LA Critic Awards for bringing such talent to the attention of the world.

  4. -Best CD – International group – Reloaded Norway – My Longest Mile
    -Best International Band – Reloaded Norway

  5. -Best CD – International group – Reloaded Norway – My Longest Mile
    -Best International Band – Reloaded Norway

  6. Best Blues Artist Traditional – hands down should be Jonathon Long. Dude is going to ignite the planet.

  7. -Best CD – International group – Reloaded Norway – My Longest Mile
    -Best International Band – Reloaded Norway

  8. I vote for :
    Best CD – International Group: Reloaded Norway
    Best International Band: Reloaded Norway

  9. Jonathon Long for best traditional blues artist. Jonathon puts his all into his performances and is an awsome performer .

  10. Best CD – International Group: Reloaded Norway
    Best International Band: Reloaded Norway

  11. BEST ROOTS/AMERICANA BAND – Lil’ Red and the Rooster.

    They dig very deep into the 20’s-50’s American blues, jazzy blues, swing for their entire inspiration. Lil’ Red carries that 50’s vocal vibe really well, Pascal,..one of the best guitarists on the planet, absolute killer rhythm section, Mr. Nye on keys!!!

    Truely a traditional American DREAM TEAM.

    The real deal!

  12. BEST EP (Group) – Shelby Texas (We are Shelby, Texas)
    BEST COUNTRY BAND –Shelby Texas (We are Shelby, Texas)

  13. For…..Best hard rock / metal group… my vote is YYNOT.
    This group gives a glimps into the musical prowess of Rush as well as offering fresh licks and writing skills in a return to classic metal rock.

  14. YYNOT for BEST HARD ROCK/METAL ARTIST/BAND!!! If you haven’t listened to their debut album, its fantastic!! 🙂

  15. My favorite for BEST HARD ROCK/METAL ARTIST/BAND is YYNOT! These guys (and gal) are a breath of fresh air! My copy of their debut album has found a permanent place outside of its package in my car CD player! The CD jacket itself is a work of art that has also found a prominent place on display at the front of my collection! There are a lot of GOOD artists and bands out there, but YYNOT surpasses “Good” to a level that has not been reached by any band in several decades! Their superb musicianship and ability to “rock” a live stage is only matched by their genuine desire to relate, on a very personal level, to their rapidly increasing fan base! This band is worthy of any and all recognition they have received, and are sure to receive in the future – a very bright and successful future at that!

  16. Best video (Official) (group) Honey River – Peace love.
    Best single (group) Honey River
    We need more Peace, Love…and Happiness!!😊

  17. BEST CD (Male) – Ken Sharp (Beauty in the Backseat)

    BEST POP ARTIST – Ken Sharp

    Ken is the best! Very catchy tunes, that really make you smile! He has made something fresh and new from the familiar best quality ingredients adding his own fingerprint and unique sound to make an album full of gems! Great songs, great arrangements, great musicians, great production! You’ve got the winner here!

  18. Best CD Male – Hadden Sayers
    Best CD Female – Deb Ryder
    Best Blues Artist – Kirk Fletcher
    Best Blues Band – Keith Stone & Red Gravy
    Best Blues Traditional Artist – Deb Ryder

  19. Note the correct spelling for: Mindi Abair and The Boneshakers – Best Holiday Album. Mindi with an “I” Thanks for the nomination!!!

  20. Rod Melancon -best single — Hayden Sayers -Blue artist – Michele D’a A mour and love dealers besd blues band , Trad blue artist- Lawrence lebo, – comback – Frank Bey -BEST BLUES (TRADITIONAL) BAND – n, Delta Moon, -Funk Band= Down North

  21. Mindi Abair and the Boneshakers (All I Got for Christmas is the Blues)!!!
    Without a doubt, best holiday album!!

  22. I’m casting my vote for “Best Pop Artist – Jordan Siwek” and “Best CD – Sun Inside -Jordan Siwek

  23. Mindi Abair & The Boneshakers. Best Holiday recording ever. Shake the blues with these Blues.
    Congratulations for the fine work AGAIN!

  24. YYNOT for FAN FAVORITE and BEST METAL/HARD ROCK!!!

    and

    JORDAN SIWEK for BEST CD (Male) and BEST POP ARTIST!!

  25. YYNOT for FAN FAVORITE and BEST METAL/HARD ROCK!!!

    and

    JORDAN SIWEK for BEST CD (Male) and BEST POP ARTIST!!

  26. Mindi Abair and The Boneshakers “All I Got For Christmas Is The Blues” for Best Holiday Album! I vote for Mindi and the Boneshakers as the best!

  27. Best Christmas album by far…Mindi Abair & The Boneshakers!!! Of course I’m biased, but it IS the BEST!!!

  28. So many great blues artists and bands. The variety and quality of the bands is outstanding! Problem: too many that are so good! Hard to choose. Thanks for spreading the word about some great blues!

  29. Mindi Abair and the Boneshakers for “All I got for Christmas is the Blues” for the best Holiday Album.

  30. BEST ROCK ARTIST – ERIC MCFADDEN without a doubt!!! That dude is absolutely INCREDIBLE at both songwriting and slaying the guitar. Everyone who like music should be aware of him!!!

  31. Eric McFadden is absolutely the greatest guitar player alive today. He can swing with anyone, and I mean anyone. This guy is absolutely brilliant, not to mention incredibly humble, funny, and the nicest guy you could ever meet in the entertainment business. Brilliant musician, who deserves the recognition

  32. I vote for RELOADED NORWAY for Fan Favorite
    Best CD – International Group: Reloaded Norway
    Best International Band: Reloaded Norway

  33. YYNOT is not only is best in class in terms of Sound, Musicality and Originality for their debut album, But… YYNOT totally kicks the asses of all entries based on how they sound and perform live.. And how they interact in general and then one on one with their fast growing fan base. Its extremely rare and unique . The fans are totally and completely immersed in all things YYNOT. Its absolutely amazing.

  34. I recommend Mindi Abair and The Boneshakers “All I Got For Christmas Is The Blues” for Best Holiday Album!

  35. BEST HARD ROCK/METAL ARTIST/BAND – YYNOT, by a landslide! YYNOT are the best thing that’s happened to the rock scene for a LONG time. Excellent musicianship, great tunes and these guys, and girl! are a serious powerhouse that I can guarantee will be achieving great things in the near future. Everyone who is into hard/progressive rock really need to check them out!

  36. For authentic and exciting stylings with new music for the holidays please consider Mindi Abair and The Boneshakers “All I Got For Christmas Is The Blues” for Best Holiday Album! It rocks!

  37. “All I Got For Christmas Is The Blues “, by Mindi Abair and the Boneshakers, gets my vote for favorite.

  38. Mindi Abair and The Boneshakers “All I Got For Christmas Is The Blues” for Best Holiday Album! It is the best choice 🙂

  39. We love Mindi Abair and The Boneshakers “All I Got For Christmas Is The Blues” for Best Holiday Album!

  40. Love this lady and her playing. She played on a couple of my privately produced and released cuts, and killed it…. as always.

    William F. Williams

  41. Best Holiday Album has to be Mindi Abair and the Boneshakers! The title song is going to be a classic!

  42. -Best CD – International group – Reloaded Norway – My Longest Mile

    -Best International Band – Reloaded Norway

  43. – Mindi Abair and The Boneshakers “All I Got For Christmas Is The Blues” for Best Holiday Album!

  44. My vote is for Mindi Abair and the Boneshakers “All I Got for Christmas Is the Blues.” I particularly love the Hammond B3 on this album.

  45. Please seriously consider Mindi Abair and The Boneshakers “All I Got For Christmas Is The Blues” for Best Holiday Album! Thank you!

  46. For Fan Favorite:
    BEST CD (Male) – Hadden Sayers (Dopamine Machine)
    BEST CD (Female) – Gina Sicilia (Heard the Lie)
    BEST R&B/SOUL BAND – Diane Durrett & Soul Suga
    BEST VIDEO (COLLABORATION) – Janiva Magness & Bryan Stephens (“Love is an Army”)
    BEST BLUES ARTIST – Gina Sicilia
    BEST BLUES BAND – JP Soars
    BEST BLUES (TRADITIONAL) ARTIST – Tom Hambridge
    BEST BLUES (TRADITIONAL) BAND – Delta Moon
    BEST COMEBACK ARTIST – Buddy Guy
    BEST HOLIDAY ALBUM – Mindi Abair and the Boneshakers (All I Got for Christmas is the Blues)
    BEST LIVE ALBUM – John McLaughlin & Jimmy Herring (Live in San Francisco)
    BEST POP/ROCK ARTIST/BAND – KT Tunstall

  47. Best cd (international group) : Reloaded Norway- My longest mile.
    Best international band: Reloaded Norway.

  48. YYNOT for best hatd rock/metal band. Their musical ability and songs alone qualify them for this. Who they are as people puts them over the top. If you havent given them a listen, do yourself a favor. Give your ears a treat fabulous musicianship, heartfelt lyrics, just a total package. They will quickly become one of your favorites, I promise.

  49. Jordan Siwek is fabulous . Fan favorite for sure for “sun inside you “. Greatest album . All my friends love it too .

  50. Lauren Jaime’s…best EP and best female singer!
    It lyrics and music are bitb tight and inspiring.
    Extremely talented performer!

  51. I vote for Lauren James for Fan Favorite! She is such an amazingly talented singer/song writer!!! Her EP ‘HERE TO STAY’ is awesome!!!

  52. BEST HARD ROCK/METAL ARTIST/BAND – YYNOT
    BEST HARD ROCK/METAL ARTIST/BAND – YYNOT
    BEST HARD ROCK/METAL ARTIST/BAND – YYNOT
    BEST HARD ROCK/METAL ARTIST/BAND – YYNOT

  53. Somebody’s been creating fake accounts, posting minute after minute, from 1:47 pm to 2:15 pm, not cool. Sorry Lauren Jaimes, those votes should be discarded, except for one.

    1. I checked each of those votes and removed five. The others were mostly gmail or yahoo, so they are valid. Thanks for the heads-up!

    2. Too bad I’m looking at these votes for Lauren Jaimes and I know these people by name personally, they are all legit voting for her. I’m her manager and was getting people to vote by sending out texts so that’s why they happened at around the same time. Really big shame if any of them weren’t counted. We’re doing it the right way. I hope LAMusicCritic Honor’s that!
      But hey, talk about fake votes you have people copying and pasting the same text in a vote for ReLoaded Norway on December 25 over and over and over

    3. A lot of votes have been back to back for many different artists. My thought process is that since it is the holiday season, friends, families and coworkers are together and one person brings up the vote and walks everyone through the process at the same time.

  54. Cool to see so many Indie Artists recognized! I’ve seen Lauren Jaimes live multiple times in New York and she is a killer performer! Super talented songwriter and singer! My vote is for her!

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