With the disparate array of sub-genres and styles housed under the famously elusive ‘Americana’ heading, the chance to rub shoulders with Noah Kahan, Brandi Carlile, The War and Treaty and 49 Winchester all under the same roof is a rarity.
This is what makes the Americana Honors and Awards such a special and cherished occasion, with an eclectic plethora of artists coming together to celebrate one another - and, throughout it all, to pay tribute to how Americana continues to thrive in the modern space.
The pre-ceremony Red Carpet provides the perfect opportunity for old friends to reconnect, for first-time attendees to meet their heroes and - most crucially of all - for artists to exchange Instagram handles, email addresses or even Threads numbers for potential collaborations.
The 2023 Americana Honors & Awards Red Carpet was graced by ‘Dial Drunk’ hitmaker, Noah Kahan, who delivered a stirring Paul Simon tribute alongside The Milk Carton Kids later in the evening.
Kahan has been one of the most luminescent stars to arise from the intersection between folk, country and Americana over the past few months. Just recently, the Vermont native recorded a duet with Zach Bryan, which will hopefully be released in the coming weeks.
Angel Olsen, one of the most respected voices in the alt-country and Americana space, arrived on the 2023 Red Carpet with her trademark charisma and gravitas.
In addition to her jaw dropping performance at the ceremony, the introspective singer-songwriter is enjoying a stellar 2023, having released a brand new EP and a smattering of singles throughout the year.
And, of course, it wouldn't be a party without the boys from 49 Winchester, who reliably bring their playful charm and an unquestionable, unavoidable sense of fun wherever they go.
The warm-hearted, amiable atmosphere that always pervades the Americana Honors & Awards felt heightened on this year's Red Carpet, and this was epitomised by the loving, endearing ambience that surrounds another Holler favourite, The War and Treaty.
The CMA-nominated couple went on to enjoy a successful evening, picking up the award for Duo/Group of the Year, as well as serenading the crowd with an enchanting rendition of their 2023 single, ‘Stretch Out’.
Margo Price also delivered an electrifying live performance, and the ‘Change of Heart’ songsmith attended the pre-show Red Carpet alongside her husband and guitarist, Jeremy Ivey.
In addition, Silas House and his husband and fellow writer, Jason Kyle Howard, were celebrated introductions to the Red Carpet experience. Silas House accepted the 2023 Album of the Year Award on behalf of his good friend and collaborator, Tyler Childers, for his widely acclaimed 2022 album, Can I Take My Hounds To Heaven?
Silas and Tyler recently worked together for his deeply moving music video for ‘In Your Love’, which follows the variegated and heartbreaking love story of two male coal miners in the 1950's.
Excitingly, Rufus Wainwright and his husband and arts administrator, Jörn Weisbrodt, brought their four-legged friend, Siegfried, to the 2023 Americana Honors and Awards Red Carpet.
Despite the fact that Rufus has two Juno Awards, a plethora of GLAAD Media gongs and a couple of Grammy nominations under his belt, the utterly adorable chihuahua stole the show.
It's not every day you get to witness an Americana titan before your very eyes - but here are two together, Allison Russell and Brandi Carlile. Carlile presented a 2023 Trailblazer Award to The Avett Brothers, and Russell was given the prestigious 2023 Spirit of Americana Award.
The Avett Brothers were overjoyed at the honour, with the trio visibly touched when Carlile quipped, “What the Avett Brothers lack in years, they more than made up for in miles. If you take a look at the odometer on those boys, it basically says that they're in their 90s”.
Brandi Carlile also took the stage with Brandy Clark for a spell-binding version of the latter's ‘Dear Insecurity’, which appears on Clark's 2023 self-titled album.
It was undoubtedly an Americana Honors & Awards to remember, with the Red Carpet serving as the perfect aperitif ahead of the riveting main course later that evening.
As we now cast our gaze longingly towards the prospect of the 2024 ceremony, we'll be keeping our fingers crossed it isn't long before some of those new friendships and Red Carpet link-ups give rise to a blockbuster collaboration or two...
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