Award-winning Traditional Bluegrass!
Michael Cleveland has once again been awarded SPBGMA's Fiddle Player of the Year! The awards ceremony was held Sunday, February 7th in Nashville, Tennessee as part of SPBGMA's National Convention.
The 2016 SPBGMA Nominations have been announced and Michael Clevland & Flamekeeper are up for two awards: Bluegrass Instrumental Group of the Year and Michael Cleveland for Fiddle Player of the Year! The National SPBGMA Awards will take place on Nashville, Tennessee at the Sheraton Music City Conference Center on Sunday, February 7th. The band will perform on the main stage on Saturday, February 6th.
Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper are proud to welcome Cody Looper as their newest member effective immediately.
Raised in a musical family in Anderson, Indiana, Cody Looper started playing guitar when he was 9 years old and eventually joined his first band alongside his father. Soon after, Looper began playing mandolin and eventually banjo, cutting his teeth on the musical genius of Earl Scruggs. Looper spent the subsequent years playing in various groups and most recently with Blue Mafia. Looper credits his time with Blue Mafia as an opportunity to grow as a professional musician and says he owes his banjo technique to the influences of many talented musicians such as Tony Wray, Avery Perry, Ron Stewart, Jim Mills, Ron Block, J.D. Crowe.
Looper will be replacing former Flamekeeper member, Gaven Largent who recently accepted the dobro position with Blue Highway. "I've always been impressed that while coming up with really creative ideas, Cody never loses sight of the traditional side of banjo playing," says Michael Cleveland. "You can hear a little bit of all the great banjo players in his playing, but even more important, you can hear things that are definitely his own style. I'm looking forward to what he will bring to the Flamekeeper sound." "I have always been a fan of Michael's music and especially enjoyed getting to jam with him," says Looper. "I'm super excited to start this new chapter of my career with Flamekeeper."
Michael Cleveland broke records on Thursday, October 1st when he was once again named the International Bluegrass Music Association's Fiddle Performer of the Year! This makes Michael the most awarded Fiddle Performer with 10 wins in that category! (Photo by Dave Brainard)
Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper have received 4 IBMA Award nominations for 2015! The categories for which the band is nominated are:
Instrumental Group of the Year
Song of the Year - "Fiddlin' Joe" (written by Mark "Brink" Brinkman)
Instrumental Recorded Performance - "Come Along Jody"
Fiddle Performer - Michael Cleveland
Here's a personal message from Michael:
"I want to thank everyone for nominating us for these awards. I'm always appreciative anytime I'm included in the fiddle category with many of my music heroes. But I am most proud of my band! These guys are constantly listening back to our shows and trying to find ways to make the music better. It's awesome to be in such a killer band with my best friends!"
The IBMA Awards will take place on Thursday, October 1st in Raleigh, NC.