Veteran broadcaster Lee Michael Demsey is among recipients of the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Distinguished Achievement Award, and Alison Krauss is part of the Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame’s Class of 2021. The IBMA announced those honors Tuesday, along with nominees for the IBMA Bluegrass Music Awards. Demsey hosted a weekday bluegrass show on American University’s public WAMU-FM Washington, DC (88.5) from 1982 to 2018.
Demsey began his career with WAMU in 1975 during his senior year at American. He also worked at country WMZQ during the 1980s. He continues to host the “Lee Michael Demsey Show” on Bluegrass Country Radio. Demsey is one of five Distinguished Achievement Award recipients, along with industry leader Nancy Cardwell Webster, Czech luthier/performer Jaroslav Prucha, musician/performer Cliff Waldron, and Boston Bluegrass Union’s Stan Zdonik.
Krauss signed with Rounder Records shortly after graduating high school and released her first album, “Too Late to Cry,” in 1987. Since then, she has won 27 GRAMMYs, as well as the CMA Horizon, Single and Female Vocalist of the Year award, and has had several hits at country radio, including 1995’s “When You Say Nothing at All,” 1999’s “Buy Me a Rose” with Kenny Rogers and 2004’s “Whiskey Lullaby” with Brad Paisley. Lynn Morris and the Stoneman Family join Krauss as 2021 Hall of Fame inductees.
The five nominees for “Entertainer of the Year” are Balsam Range, Billy Strings, Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, Del McCoury Band, and The Po’ Ramblin’ Boys at the Bluegrass Music Awards. The awards will be handed out Thursday, Sept. 30, at the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts in Raleigh, NC.
A full list of nominees can be found at the Bluegrass Today website.