Eight local acts nominated for 2006 JUNO Awards

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Eight local artists have been nominated for the 2006 JUNO Awards, The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) announced on February 15, making this another strong year for the Manitoba music industry. The 35th Annual Juno Awards will take place on April 2 in Halifax, Nova Scotia and will be broadcast nationwide live on CTV.

Internationally-acclaimed Celtic fusion quintet The Duhks is up for Roots and Traditional Album of the Year (Group) for its self-titled release on Sugar Hill Records. The Duhks have been riding a wave of success for the last three years, including a song contribution to Grammy-winning multi-artist compilation Beautiful Dreamer. The band - which took home a 2005 Western Canadian Music Award in October for Outstanding Roots Recording - has been in Nashville recording its third album co-produced by Grammy-winning Gary Paczosa (Dixie Chicks, Allison Krauss, Dolly Parton). Folk trio The Wailin’ Jennys brought home the award last year.

No stranger to the Juno nominations, Brandon violinist James Ehnes is up for Best Classical Album (Solo or Chamber Ensemble) which he brought home in 2003 and 2001. Acclaimed composer Robert Turner, another past Juno-nominee who recently celebrated his 85th birthday, is up for Classical Composition of the Year. Blues rock trio The Perpetrators is up for Best Blues Album. Fresh from a win for Female Vocalist of the Year at the Canadian Gospel Music Association’s Covenant Awards, newcomer Amanda Falk’s self-titled debut has been nominated for Contemporary Christian/Gospel Album of the Year.

Local Aboriginal artists continue to prove that Manitoba is home to some of the best and most exciting music in the genre at this year’s awards. Three hometown acts, Billy Joe Green, Burnt, and Eagle & Hawk, have been nominated for Aboriginal Recording of the Year. Burnt and Eagle & Hawk have both been nominated in this category before, with Eagle & Hawk taking home the award in 2002.

“After last year's Juno Awards in Winnipeg, this celebration of great music is more meaningful now than ever before,” says MARIA's executive director Sam Baardman. “Everyone MARIA is excited by year’s list of nominees, particularly the strength of our Aboriginal artists. It’s wonderful to see such a wide variety of talent being recognized by the national music industry. All the nominees deserve congratulations.”

Ex-pat Luke Doucet, former guitarist for now-defunct roots act Acoustically Inclined, is also a contender for an award this year in the Adult Alternative Album of the Year category. One-time Winnipegger Neil Young received three nominations this year, including Songwriter of the Year, Producer of the Year, and Adult Alternative Album of the Year.

For a complete list of nominees and winners for the 2006 JUNO Awards, please visit www.junoawards.ca.

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