In what’s set up as a two-ballot voting competition, the B.C. country music industry picks the best and brightest stars each year – and once again there are many Langleyites on the list of award nominees – Willoughby’s Dallas Smith’s name popping up most frequently.
Smith, for example, is up for album/EP of the year, entertainer of the year, fan choice of the year, male vocalist of the year, single of the year, video of the year, and website of the year.
In the meantime, Chad Brownlee – Smith’s pal, neighbour, and co-host at last week’s Boys of Fall charity golf tourney (which, by the way raised more than $100,000 for JRfm’s Basics for Babies), is also up for seven awards. Many are in the same categories: entertainer, male vocalist, fan choice, single, and video. But, Brownlee is also up for songwriter and humanitarian of the year.
Keeping up with the boys is Langley’s Karen Lee Batten. She is nominated for six awards, while Rod Black is up for five, as are the singing sisters Robyn & Ryleigh Gillespie.
Also on the list from Langley is producer, guitarist, and promoter Mitch Merrett, who is nominated for three awards, Scott Cooke who is up for producers and bass player of the year, Cindy Giesbrecht who is up for country music person of the year, and Gabby’s Country Cabaret, which is in the running for country venue of the year.
The list extended to include yet another long-time Langleyite Geoff Dueck, who’s on the board of the BCCMAs and plays a major role in producing the association entertainment at the annual Cloverdale Rodeo. He is in the running for music person of the year.
Making that list, as well, is former Langleyite Linda Corscadden, who is up for the music person of the year, along with another former Langleyite – Aaron Pritchett – who is vying for three awards.
And giving Brownlee a run in the humanitarian category is Chris and Jamie Rushinski, a pair of Langley twins and local realtors who coordinate the huge Gone Country cancer fundraiser each year in Cloverdale.
The semi-finalists will be determined Sept. 11, with the association holding its annual awards weekend Oct. 23 to 25.