This list, announced Tuesday, features Azealia Banks’ Broke with Expensive Taste, Banks’ Goddess, Benjamin Booker’s self-titled set, Bully’s Feels Like, Chris Stapleton’s Traveller, Ex Hex’s Rips, Kamasi Washington’s The Epic, Leon Bridges’ Coming Home, Mikky Ekko’s Time, Natalie Prass’ self-titled debut, Shamir’s Ratchet and Tweedy’s Sukierae.
The winner will be announced March 2 and will receive a $25,000 cash prize. A special “celebration event” will be held that evening in Nashville, organizers say.
The American Music Prize for best debut album is the brainchild of Scott B. Murphy, who established the annual Australian Music Prize back in 2005. Its ambition, Murphy has said, is to “encourage, discover, reward and promote new music of excellence by U.S. artists.”
The process was open to all U.S. debut LPs released between Aug. 1, 2014 and July 31, 2015, and each entry must have sold 1,000 or more copies as measured by Nielsen. The lucky dozen was selected by a music industry expert panel and boiled-down from a long list of more than 60 albums. More than 300 eligible albums were submitted for the prize, details for which can be found at: www.americanmusicprize.com.
American Music Prize Shortlist:
Azealia Banks, Broke with Expensive Taste
Benjamin Booker, Benjamin Booker
Bully, Feels Like
Chris Stapleton, Traveller
Ex Hex, Rips
Kamasi Washington, The Epic
Leon Bridges, Coming Home
Mikky Ekko, Time
Natalie Prass, Natalie Prass