Perennial favorites Buddy Guy and Etta James were the big winners at the W.C. Handy Blues Awards, which were presented by the non-profit Blues Foundation last night (April 29) at the Cannon Center Bal

Perennial favorites Buddy Guy and Etta James were the big winners at the W.C. Handy Blues Awards, which were presented by the non-profit Blues Foundation last night (April 29) at the Cannon Center Ballroom in Memphis.

Singer-guitarist Guy was named contemporary blues male artist of the year, and his Silvertone album "Blues Singer" was selected blues album of the year and acoustic blues album of the year. Vocalist James was honored as soul blues female artist of the year; her Private Music release "Let's Roll" scored as soul blues album of the year.

Roomful of Blues took blues band of the year accolades, and the group's horn section won in the instrumentalist category.

B.B. King was dubbed blues entertainer of the year. "Doctor Velvet" by Texas singer-guitarist Nick Curran received the best new artist debut award.

Other Handys favorites collecting honors included pianist Pinetop Perkins (traditonal blues male artist of the year) and singer Koko Taylor (traditional blues female artist of the year).

The Handy Awards are based on a poll of blues fans and national blues society members.

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