By Johnny Papan
VANCOUVER — Ahhh, awards season. That chic time of year we roll out the red carpets, fancy up in our finest outfits, and show gratitude to the great talents of the last year. Needless to say, there is no better way to kick-off Golden February than with Vancouver’s second annual Whammy Awards — a true appreciator of our local music scene.
“We are musicians ourselves, and have seen first hand how out of touch traditional recognition systems are when it comes to truly appreciating the artists out there,” says Rob Stewart, who organizes the event with his Apocalypse Sunrise Productions partner, Johnny Matter.
“How do people come to recognize excellent musicians in a society where most of the music they hear is controlled by a small group of media companies whose primary motivation is profit?” Stewart asks. “True musicians and amazing artists operate underground, in small communities like ours, and it is so important that these people get an opportunity to be recognized, listened to, and appreciated.“
Unlike most awards ceremonies, the Whammys do not have a panel of “experts” to pick and choose who gets nominated and wins. “It’s up to the community,” Stewart says. “If you, or someone you know thinks that you are Whammy material, all you need to do to get involved is make sure that your nomination is submitted as many times as possible during the first phase.”
Anybody can be nominated via an online form and the top four artists with most nominations are announced at the end of a two-month period. During the second phase, these finalists will receive votes by the community, and winners are announced at the ceremony.
“Our winners receive a Whammy trophy, and immortalization in our yearly plaque,” Stewart exclaims. “This year we are excited to announce the winners of the ‘Best Metal’ category will get a place in the Armstrong Music Festival.” The “Whacademy” hopes to branch out and find more sponsors that can offer perks to winners and artists.
If you’re interested in attending, but don’t own an outfit that fits the glamour you see on television, do not fear. At the Whammys, posh isn’t needed to have a good time. “This event is unique and beautiful in its originality,” Stewart states. “It is intended to be as accessible as possible. You may find celebrities in suits as well as a well-known public figure in a chicken costume. Last year we had a banana and a gorilla watching the front door. Come wearing whatever you feel comfortable in. The bottom line is, it’s a party like no other. Come get Whammy’d with us!”
The 2nd Annual Whammy Awards take place at the Rickshaw Theatre on February 10.BC, British Columbia, Rickshaw Theatre, Whammys