Toronto Blues Society | » 20th Annual Maple Blues Awards

20th Annual Maple Blues Awards

Nominees and Winners Event Details Nominating Panel

Nominees and Winners

Congratulations to everyone who won at this year’s Maple Blues Awards! Winner names are highlighted in *BOLD in the nominee list below.

Entertainer of the Year

Angel Forrest
Cécile Doo-Kingué
Matt Andersen
*The Paul DesLauriers Band

Electric Act of the Year

David Gogo
*The Paul DesLauriers Band
Steve Hill
The 24th Street Wailers

Acoustic Act of the Year

Al Lerman
*Big Dave McLean
Harrison Kennedy
Jimmy Bowskill & Carlos del Junco
Tim Williams

Male Vocalist of the Year

Duane Blackburn
Harpdog Brown
Harrison Kennedy
John Mays
*Matt Andersen

Female Vocalist of the Year

*Angel Forrest
Dawn Tyler Watson
Samantha Martin
Shakura S’Aida
Suzie Vinnick

New Artist of the Year

Andre Bisson
Blue Moon Marquee
Debra Power
Mark Crissinger
*Spencer MacKenzie

Recording/Producer of the Year

*Angel Forrest – Angel’s 11 (Morningstar); Producers: Angel Forrest & Denis Coulombe
David Gogo – Vicksburg Call (Cordova Bay); Producer: The Pérignon Partnership
David Vest – Devestatin’ Rhythm (Ark-O-Matic); Producers: David Vest & Gary Kendall
Dawn Tyler Watson – Jawbreaker! (Self); Producers: François Thiffault
Harpdog Brown – Travelin’ with the Blues (Dog House Records); Producer: Little Victor

International Artist of the Year

Beth Hart
*Joe Bonamassa
Shemekia Copeland
Tedeschi Trucks Band
Mavis Staples

Guitarist of the Year

Colin James
*David Gogo
Paul DesLauriers
Steve Hill
Tim Williams

Harmonica Player of the Year

Carlos del Junco
*Harpdog Brown
Jerome Godboo
Roly Platt
Steve Marriner

Piano/Keyboard Player of the Year

David Vest
Duane Blackburn
Jesse O’Brien
*Kenny “Blues Boss” Wayne
Michael Kaeshammer

Horn Player of the Year

Al Lerman
Chris Whiteley
*Frankie Thiffault (Ben Racine Band)
Jon Wong
Mat “Moose” Mousseau (Ben Racine Band)

Drummer of the Year

Chris Nordquist
Lindsay Beaver (The 24th Street Wailers)
Matt Sobb
*Sam Harrisson (The Paul DesLauriers Band)
Tom Bona

Bassist of the Year

Alan Duffy
Alec Fraser
Gary Kendall
*Greg Morency (The Paul DesLauriers Band)
John Dymond (Colin Linden)

Songwriter of the Year

*Angel Forrest & Denis Coulombe
Cécile Doo-Kingué
Paul Reddick & Colin Cripps
Ross Neilsen
Sugar Brown

Blues With A Feeling (Lifetime Achievement)

*Stephen Barry
Diana Braithwaite
Danny Brooks
Michael Jerome Browne
Michael Fonfara
Alec Fraser
Tom Lavin
Ellen McIlwaine
Joe Murphy
Brent Parkin
Ken Whiteley

Event Details

The 20th Annual Maple Blues Awards was held at the Royal Conservatory of Music’s Koerner Hall onMonday, January 23rd, 2017 at 7:00pm in Toronto.


Each year, attendees of the Maple Blues Awards Gala enjoy performances from a selection of current nominees, accompanied by the always popular Maple Blues Band. This year’s performers will be announced in November 2016 once the nominees have been determined.

Member Discount

TBS Charter/Family/Student/Benefactor Members can access best available seats for $35. Please contact us to retrieve the required promo code.


For media inquiries, please download and fill in the Media Accreditation Request. Media requests must be submitted to Sarah French by January 9, 2017.


The Maple Blues Awards is a gala event. Formal attire is encouraged but not required.


The Nominating Panel consists of industry professionals from across Canada who volunteer their time to participate.

Vince Almond CFBX Kamloops BC
Brant Zwicker* At the Crossroads (syndicated) Kamloops BC
William “Billieboy” Lucas CHLY Nanaimo BC
Earl Krushelnicki Blues Underground Network Prince George BC
Rod Dranfield White Rock Blues Society Surrey BC
Brent Morrison Rockin’ Blues (CJSF | CJMP) Vancouver BC
Paul Norton CFRO | CiTR Vancouver BC
Ron Simmonds CFRO Vancouver BC
Cindy McLeod Calgary Blues Music Association | The Blues Witness (CJSW) Calgary AB
Cam Hayden The Friday Night Blues Party (CKUA) Edmonton AB
Chris Martin Saturday Night Blues (CBC) Edmonton AB
Peter North Dead Ends & Detours (CKUA) Edmonton AB
Grant Stovel CJSR | CKUA Edmonton AB
Jeff Corbett Redbeard’s Blues (CJTR) Regina SK
Gord MacAulay Canadian Blues Alliance Saskatoon SK
Al Wood Saskatoon Blues Society Saskatoon SK
Ronnie Lindsay Bluesday on Tuesday (CKUW) Winnipeg MB
Paul Panchezak Breakfast of Champions (CFMU) Hamilton ON
Ken Wallis Blues Blast (The HAWK) Hamilton ON
Claude Cloutier Kitchener Blues Festival Kitchener ON
Bruce Hall Grand River Blues Society Kitchener ON
Larry Kurtz Orangeville Blues & Jazz Festival Orangeville ON
Liz Sykes Ottawa Blues Society Ottawa ON
Deborah Cartmer CFBU St. Catharines ON
Phil Hordy Thunder Bay Blues Society Thunder Bay ON
Julie Hill Blue Remedy (Radio Regent | Blues and Roots Radio) Toronto ON
Eric Thom Freelance Music Journalist Toronto ON
John Valenteyn* John’s Blues Picks (Maple Blues) | John Valenteyn’s Blues (CIUT) Toronto ON
Yannick Lambert Donnacona Blues Festival Donnacona QC
Debra Thornington Ottawa Blues Society | Dawg’On Blues (DAWG) Gatineau QC
Alexandre Petit Viree Blues Boreale Hull QC
John Detcheverry Cha Cha In Blue (CKUT) Montreal QC
Daisy Hanna Montreal Blues Society Montreal QC
Phil Brisse Montreal Blues Society Montreal QC
Randy Renaud The Black Cat Alley (CHOM) Montreal QC
Greg  Torrington The Blues (Stingray Music) Montreal QC
Michel Dubois Rue D’Auteuil (CKRL) Quebec QC
Louis Brunet CKMN Rimouski QC
Jean Sicotte Les Productions Kazou Sutton QC
Bob Mersereau CBC Radio One Fredericton NB
Roger Jean Rosie’s Juke Joint (CHSR) Fredericton NB
Conrad Mead 95.7 The Wolf Fredericton NB
Yanick Theriault Cigare & Whiskey (CFBO) Grand Moncton NB
Sandy MacDonald Freelance Music Journalist Halifax NS
Gene Bellows Blues in the Night (VOBB) Bonne Bay NL
Terry Parsons* Blind Lemon Radio (CHMR) St. John’s NL

*The panel is lead by a steering committee consisting of John Valenteyn, Brant Zwicker and Terry Parsons.




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TBS logo and WBR artwork by Barbara Klunder

The Toronto Blues Society acknowledges the annual support of the Ontario Arts Council, the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Council and the Department of Canadian Heritage, and project support from FACTOR< and the Government of Canada through the Department of Canadian Heritage (Canada Music Fund) and of Canada’s Private Broadcasters, The Canada Council for the Arts, the SOCAN Foundation, SOCAN, the Ontario Media Development Corporation, and the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport.