2016 could well be the beginning of a new era for Staffordshire’s music. For years, Stoke-on-Trent and its surrounding areas has been the home of incredible musicians, and on Saturday 23rd January, we can celebrate this in style with the first Music Awards of Staffordshire and Cheshire.
Held at the Kings Hall in Stoke, the night will consist of eight awards;
Best Single Award
Best EP Award
Best New Act Award
Young Artist Of The Year Award (Under 21)
Best Rock Band
Best Solo Artist
For each award, there will be six nominations, which will be released soon, and will be put forward to public vote. On the night of the event there will also be live music from several local acts, you are guaranteed an entertaining evening. Each award is also sponsored by local businesses, in an effort to promote not only the local music scene but other local organisations too.
6 Towns Radio presenter Lee Barber, who has worked on the local music scene for five years, decided to put together the event after making his return to the community radio station earlier this year and seeing the wealth of talent the city has.
“Coming back to the radio to promote the local music scene again, I saw immediately that we still have fantastic music all around us, and great people working hard to help promote these musicians. But there seems to be a barrier, as there always has been, between the people involved in the local scene and the rest of the city, even the county. I thought that if we can put together a music awards night to celebrate the talent we have here in Staffordshire, we can perhaps make a start at getting these passionate musicians out to the general public and beyond.
“Places like Liverpool, long known for its music, have been doing local music awards nights for years, and the musicians involved are given a great platform through it. If we can start doing the same here, then hopefully it will benefit everyone involved. Speaking to local artists, I’ve been hearing a similar thing for a number of years, that if they want to get anywhere with their music, they have to get out of Stoke, and doing that is hard. But why? Why is that so hard? Not only that, but why should they have to ‘get out of Stoke’ in order to get anywhere? People should be wanting to come to us to see the brilliant music we have to offer.
“We have some amazing venues here, award winning venues in fact, and after the awards night, we’ll have award winning acts to go with it. If we can start to build on the great foundations we have, we can then start to bring people into the city, into the county. If we can push the music we have to the ears of the general public and indeed to the councils, then maybe we can make steps to sit with the likes of Liverpool and Manchester, even London, for its rich local music scene.”