New York, NY (Top40 Charts) Two of blues' biggest names, Mississippi legend Bobby Rush and contemporary artist Janiva Magness, received Grammy nominations in the 59th Annual Grammy Awards announcements this morning. The awards will be announced at the Grammy Awards ceremony on February 12, 2017 in Los Angeles. It's Rush's fourth nomination, this one for his critically acclaimed Rounder Records debut album Porcupine Meat. With special guests Dave Alvin, Joe Bonamassa, Keb' Mo', and Vasti Jackson, and backing from the New Orleans "A" team, the release cemented Bobby Rush's legacy as the most vital blues artist of his generation. Producer was Rounder's Scott Billington. Rush is a 10-time Blues Music Award winner, and 41-time nominee.
Rush was previously nominated for his albums Hoochie Man (2000), Down in Louisiana (2013) and Decisions with the band Blinddog Smokin' (2014).
"How much you wanna bet he finally wins that Grammy?" predicted Goldmine magazine of the album, while No Depression enthused: "Buckle up or if you prefer hang on tight and get ready for one of the funkiest, most jaw dropping rides you have ever been on that is going to take you down in the mud and muck of southwestern Louisiana and to heights that you didn't think you could ever reach. Yes, already a first runner for Record of the Year." Responding to the announcement, Rush said, "This is the greatest thing to ever happen to me in my life, for being with the competition around me. I want everyone to win, but I certainly want to win. Just being in the race is to be a winner. Somebody has to win and somebody has to lose. I'm not a sore loser especially with people like this.
The category is so strong." Janiva Magness' Love Wins Again album on Blue Élan Records was another evolutionary step for the soulful, elegant, award-winning singer-songwriter. Its 11 core songs and two bonus tracks were built on a sonically sophisticated architecture that's in full service of her remarkably flexible and generous voice. The album shattered genre barriers by enshrining elements of Americana, soul, rock, pop, country and blues, and helped Magness cross over into Americana (she charted Top 30 on the format's radio chart and performed at the Americana Music Festival & Conference). The album reached #1 on Blues radio and remained in the Top 10 for seven months.
Magness is a seven-time Blues Music Award recipient and a 25-time nominee. According to Downbeat, "Janiva Magness is one lucky woman: Her singing is soulful and intimate." Living Blues called it "a knockout addition to Janiva Magness' stellar catalog." On her first-ever Grammy nomimation, Magness said, "I am profoundly humbled by today's Grammy nomination announcements. Standing in very tall cotton. Love Wins Again for Best Contemporary Blues Album. Thanks so much producer Dave Darling, Blue Élan, my band, Jeff DeLia and 72 Music Management, Cary Baker and Conqueroo, John Oszajca, Leslie Rouffe, Frank Roszak, and Atomic Music Group! Wow!" Both Rush and Magness are managed by 72 Music Management.