South Austin coffee house and intimate music venue Strange Brew won Best Music Venue honors at the first-ever Austin Music Industry Awards in an invitation-only ceremony Monday evening at Palm Door on Sixth.
Strange Brew also received the nod for Best Club Sound, and musicians selected it as the Best Venue to Play. With three awards, Strange Brew was the evening’s most decorated winner.
Recently departed Texas Music Office director Casey Monahan was voted into the Austin Music Business Hall of Fame and received advocacy group Austin Music People’s “Unsung Hero” Award. In an acceptance speech, he stressed the importance of community members fighting to make sure that “music matters” in Austin.
Austin Music People also presented its Esme Barrera Award for Music Activism and Education to singer-songwriter Gina Chavez. Cited as Best Music Support Nonprofit was the Health Alliance for Austin Musicians.
David Cotton of new North Austin venue the Roost was voted Best Club Booker, and the Roost tied for Best New Venue with South Congress hot spot C-Boy’s Heart & Soul.
Guest presenters included Charlie Sexton, who gave the award for Best Record Store to perennial winner Waterloo Records. Local band Berkshire Hounds provided fitting musical introductions to the winners and guest presenters throughout the evening.
Winners in other prominent categories included KUTX for Best Radio Station (with KUTX DJ Paul Ray’s “Twine Time” also honored as Best Radio Music Program), Arlyn Studios for Best Recording Studio, Raw Paw Records for Best Record Label and AJ Vallejo for Best Producer.
This was the first time the industry awards had been separated out from the main Austin Music Awards ceremony, which will take place March 18 at the Austin Convention Center as part of SXSW. A few hundred people attended the event, which ran for about two hours.
Voting for both the Industry Awards and the Music Awards was conducted by ballot in the Austin Chronicle in print and online in early 2015.
The full list of winners:
Best Music Venue, Best Club Sound and Best Venue to Play: Strange Brew
Best New Venue: C-Boy’s Heart & Soul and the Roost (tie)
Best Club Booker: David Cotton (the Roost)
Best Radio Station: KUTX
Best Radio Music Program: “Twine Time” with Paul Ray (KUTX)
Best Radio Personality: Jason & Deb of 101X
Best Record Store: Waterloo Records
Best Record Label: Raw Paw Records
Best Recording Studio: Arlyn Studios
Best Producer: AJ Vallejo
Music Business Hall of Fame and Austin Music People’s “Unsung Hero” Award: Casey Monahan
Austin Music People’s Esme Barrera Award for Music Activism and Education: Gina Chavez
Best Nonprofit: Health Alliance for Austin Musicians
Best Ongoing Residency: Church on Monday at the Continental Club
Best Outside City Limits Venue: Gruene Hall
Best Music Writer: Kevin Curtin (Austin Chronicle)
Best Photography: Merrick Ales
Best Poster and Best Album Art: Billy Perkins
Best Music Store and Best Instrument Repair: Strait Music
Best Specialty Instrument Store: Violins Etc.
Best Equipment Rental: Rock n Roll Rentals
Best Club Lighting: Vulcan Gas Co.