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Volume 26, Number 11 — November 2018

IBMA award nominees include ETSU alumni, students & faculty

August 29, 2018

Nine individuals associated with East Tennessee State University’s Bluegrass, Old-Time and Country Music Studies program are nominees for 2018 International Bluegrass Music Association awards.

Alumna Becky Buller, along with artist Molly Tuttle, led the field, with each receiving six nominations.

Buller, alumnus and current faculty member Tim Stafford, and alumnus and current program director Dan Boner were all honored for their work on “Calamity Jane,” which was nominated for both Song of the Year and Recorded Event of the Year. In addition, Buller and Boner received nominations for their work on “Speakin’ to that Mountain,” which was nominated for Gospel Recorded Performance of the Year.

Buller also received Fiddle Player of the Year and Female Vocalist of the Year nominations, as well as Recorded Event of the Year nominations for her work on “She Took the Tennessee River,” “Swept Away” and “The Rebel and the Rose.”

Faculty member Hunter Berry was nominated for Fiddle Player of the Year, and former faculty member Kristin Scott Benson for Banjo Player of the Year.

Michael Cleveland and Flamekeeper, a band for which current ETSU student Tyler Griffith plays bass, was nominated for Instrumental Group of the Year.

Barry Bales, an alumnus and former faculty member, received a nomination for Bass Player of the Year, and his band, The Earls of Leicester, was nominated for Entertainer of the Year.

Two alumni were recognized with Emerging Artist of the Year nominations: Beth Lawrence, for her work with the band Sister Sadie, for which she plays bass, and Haselden Ciaccio, for her work with Molly Tuttle, for whom she also plays bass.

The winners will be announced at the 2018 IBMA Awards Show, which is held Sept. 27 at the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts in Raleigh, North Carolina.




Barry Bales


Dan Boner