Kermit Ruffins and GIVERS.
Only those two acts stood between Trombone Shorty and every award he competed for. This year in the Best of the Beat, OffBeat readers voted him Artist of the Year, R&B/Funk Artist of the Year, Trombone Player of the Year, and his For True was named Album of the Year and R&B/Funk Album of the Year. Along with director Brandan “Bmike” Odums, he even took home the Best Music Video award for the music video to his single “Do to Me.”
Ruffins helped stop the roll by winning Trumpet Player of the Year, and Lafayette rock band GIVERS took Song of the Year for “Up Up Up”—one of three awards they won, along with Rock Band of the Year and Rock Album of the Year for In Light.
The awards were presented on January 27 at Generations Hall, where George Porter, Jr., John Rankin, Scott Billington and Mary Howell were honored with Lifetime Achievement recognition as well. Porter performed with a special lineup of his band Runnin’ Pardners, and his set included appearances from many guests. Other performers at the Best of the Beat included GIVERS, Big Freedia, Lost Bayou Ramblers, Glen David Andrews, the Soul Rebels, and Aurora Nealand & the Royal Roses.
Here’s the full list of Best of the Beat Award winners:
Artist of the Year: Trombone Shorty
Best Emerging Artist: Brass-A-Holics
Best R&B/Funk Artist: Trombone Shorty
Best Rock Artist: GIVERS
Best Blues Artist: Tab Benoit
Best Roots Rock Artist: Anders Osborne
Best Brass Band: Rebirth Brass Band
Best Rap/Hip-Hop Artist: Big Freedia
Best Traditional Jazz Artist: Preservation Hall Jazz Band
Best Contemporary Jazz Artist: Irvin Mayfield & the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra
Best Cajun Artist: Steve Riley & the Mamou Playboys
Best Zydeco Artist: Geno Delafose
Best Country/Folk Artist: Yvette Landry
Best Singer-Songwriter: Andrew Duhon
Best Cover Band: The Bucktown All-Stars
Songwriter of the Year: Tab Benoit
Best Female Vocalist: Irma Thomas
Best Male Vocalist: John Boutte
Best Guitarist: Anders Osborne
Best Piano/Keyboardist: Ivan Neville
Best Bass Player: George Porter, Jr.
Best Drummer: Stanton Moore
Best Trumpeter: Kermit Ruffins
Best Saxophonist: Tom Fitzpatrick
Best Trombonist: Troy Andrews
Best Clarinetist: Dr. Michael White
Best Tuba/Sousaphonist: Phil Frazier
Best Accordionist: Steve Riley
Best Violin/Fiddle Player: Amanda Shaw
Best DJ: DJ Soul Sister
Best Other Instrumentalist: Washboard Chaz (washboard)
Best Music Video: “Do To Me” by Trombone Shorty, directed by Brandan Odums (watch on YouTube)
Lifetime Achievement in Music: George Porter, Jr.
Lifetime Achievement in Music Business: Scott Billington
Lifetime Achievement in Music Education: John Rankin
Heartbeat Award: Mary Howell