The second annual Charlotte Music Awards show takes place next week, and many hope it'll be an improvement over the inaugural event.
Moving it to a smaller venue can't hurt appearances – Ovens Auditorium (capacity: almost 2,500) looked virtually empty last year, while the 400-seat Booth Playhouse should fill up quickly. The Booth also has its own sound system. The sound system the CMAs provided at last year's show was so harsh it had many scrambling for the exits.
Some performers voiced their disappointment anonymously after the 2007 show, but few wanted to go on record because of the organizer's good intentions. The presentation and acceptance of Arthur Smith's lifetime achievement award, for instance, was lovely and overdue.
Although last year's show was billed as the Charlotte Music Awards, it spanned the entire Carolinas and failed to include local music heroes with 25-year histories – artists like Sugarsmack/Snagglepuss' Hope Nichols, Antiseen or the Spongetones. That's being corrected: The Spongetones will get a special recognition award. Other honorees: Maurice Williams & the Zodiacs, Nantucket and the Double Door Inn.
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Performers include Angwish, South 85, Tropic Culture, Contagious Blues Band, Luna's Lament, St. James Gospel Choir, Thistle Down Tinkers, Jared Allen and the Smokey Joe Show.