Chad Brownlee is up for a humanitarian award for the work he did with Tim Horton's to send kids to camp.

Langley dominates music awards shortlist

The country music industry will crown B.C.’s very best this weekend.

Under almost every category of honour being handed out at the BC Country Music Association (BCCMA) awards this weekend, guests will hear a Langley name being called.

With few exceptions, in fact, Chad Brownlee, Dallas Smith, Robyn & Ryleigh, Me and Mae, and Karen Lee Batten’s names appear.

Last year, Langley’s own Smith stole the show garnering album, entertainer, fan choice, mail vocalist, single, and website of the year awards. He garnered a similar quantity of bling the year before.

This time out, Smith and his neighbour and friend Brownlee are once again competing for entertainer, fan’s choice, male vocalist, single, and video of the year, with Brownlee also shortlisted for album, songwriter, and humanitarian of the year and Smith shortlisted for website of the year.

Also on the shortlist  from Langley is Robyn & Ryleigh (the Gillespie sisters) up for album of the year, as well as group duo of the year, going up against fellow Langleyite Shawn Meehan and his band Me and Mae.

“We are so incredibly honoured to be nominated for two awards at the BC Country Music awards show this year,” Robyn said.

“We are super excited about this,” Ryleigh interjected.

“Being in amongst the other final nominees for album of the year, group duo of the year, and Gene Greenwood being nominated for video director of the year for our single By Heart is an amazing feeling of accomplishment,” she added.

Continuing to get support from the BC Country Music Association is “a feeling beyond words, Robyn explained.

“We feel like we are on the right path and we couldn’t do this without support. We thank everyone who supports us from the bottom of our hearts.”

Langley’s Mike Sanyshun shortlisted in the special instrument category, and Batten is back on the card this year female vocalist of the year.

“Having your industry nominate you for an award of any kind is an unexplained feeling, and winning an award is just the cherry on top,” she told the Langley Advance.

“That being said, just to be recognized in any industry for being good at what you have chosen to do is a feeling I will never take for granted, especially as an independent artist,” said Batten, who reached the Top 11 finals in season one of Canadian Idol in 2003.

“It’s almost like a parent looking at you when you are a kid and hearing them say, ‘I’m super proud of you’ except in this case it’s all your peers, friends, and colleagues,” Batten added.

“The music industry is not an easy road to climb, sometimes you wish it could be ‘all about the music’ and not business. It’s the fans, the stages, and all the  ridiculous moments that my bands and I have had over the years that will keep us laughing and coming back for more.

“To have won BC country female vocalist of the year five times, and be nominated again for 2016, is not only a super humbling feeling, it is also the most amazing compliment knowing that my music still matters. This is what hits my heart and soul, and I am forever grateful to those who support me, believe in me, and want to hear more.”

In the video director category, two local acts are indirectly nominated. Gene Greenwood is in the running for a video produced for Robyn & Ryleigh, while Stephano Barberis is on the docket for video work done with both Smith and Brownlee.

Producer and musician Mitch Merrett is also up again this year for songwriter and producer awards.

Under the country music person of the year category, Langley’s Geoff Dueck (known for his work with the Cloverdale Rodeo, as well as Aldergrove Fair Days, and Fort Langley May Day) is on the ballot.

And also up for a humanitarian award are Langley twins Chris and Jamie Ruscheinski, who created the Gone Country cancer fundraising show held every summer in Cloverdale.

Also on the list is Fort Langley singer and songwriter Shylo Sharity is up for a Ray McAuley Horizon Award as a new artist.

The awards are being handed out on Sunday, Oct. 23 at the Hard Rock Casino in Coquitam.

It’s the 40th anniversary awards celebration, and it will kick off with a cocktail hour at 5:30 p.m., and show at 6:30 p.m., with a number of special features.

In additions to the awards presentations, Patricia Conroy is being flown in to do a medley of some of her best songs, explained Linda Corscadden, the acting president and former long-time Langley resident immersed in organizing the annual BCCMAs.

“We have a special Hall of Fame induction happening, birthday cake, 13 performances. And the floor is sold out (525 seats) and the balcony is already half sold out (250 seats),” Corscadden said.

Tickets are $45 and available at 1-855-985-5000.

Among those performing during the show are Langley’s own Batten, as well as Robyn & Ryleigh.

“We have a spot on the main stage this year as well! Woohoo!” Ryleigh told the Langley Advance.

The awards celebrations wrap up a weekend of BCCMA events that include a showcase Friday night, workshops and pre-party Saturday – both at the Executive Plaza Hotel in Coquitlam – followed by the big awards show on Sunday.

CAPTION: Me and Mae

CAPTION: Mitch Merrett

CAPTION: Robyn & Ryleigh

CAPTION: Karen Lee Batten

CAPTION: Dallas Smith

CAPTION: Ruscheinski twins

CAPTION: Shylo Sharity

BC Country Music Association final nominees

Album / EP of the Year

Chad Brownlee – Hearts On Fire

Aaron Pritchett – The Score

Madeline Merlo – Free Soul

Ben Klick – Today

Robyn & Ryleigh – By Heart


Country Club Act of the Year


Chris Buck Band

Andrew Christopher

Ben Klick

Rockin’ Chair


Country Venue of the Year

Cactus Annies – Merritt

The Duke Saloon – Victoria

The Roxy – Vancouver

Ok Corral – Kelowna

Cactus Jacks – Kamloops

Roosters Country Cabaret – Pitt Meadows


Country Music Person of the Year

Geoff Dueck

Linda Corscadden

David Wills

Paul Biro

Jeff Johnson


Country On Air Personality Area Code 250

Casey Clarke / Roo Phelps  – Country 100.7 Kelowna/Penticton

TJ Connors – Country 103.1 Kamloops

Louis Big Rig McIvor – Country 103.1 Kamloops

Scott George – Country 100.7 Kelowna/Penticton

Gerry O’Day – Country 100.7 Kelowna/Penticton

Sarah Carmichael – 100.1 Moose FM


Country On Air Personality Area Code 604

Barbara Beam – Country 93.7 Vancouver

Curtis Pope – Country 107.1 Abbotsford

jaXon Hawks – Country 93.7 Vancouver

Kristen Jade – Country 93.7 Vancouver

Docc Andrews – Country 93.7 Vancouver


Entertainer of the Year

Aaron Pritchett

Chad Brownlee

Dallas Smith

Chris Buck Band

The Washboard Union


Fans Choice Award

Aaron Pritchett

Chad Brownlee

Dallas Smith

Ben Klick

Chris Buck Band

The Washboard Union


Female Vocalist of the Year

Karen Lee Batten

Madeline Merlo

Danielle Marie

Cash Crawford

Lisa Nicole

Ajaye Jardine


Gaylord Wood Traditional Country Award

Jackson Hollow

Kenny Hess

Mike Sanyshyn

Ben Klick

Todd Richard

Rollin’ Trainwreck


Group Duo of the Year

Me and Mae

Chris Buck Band

The Washboard Union

Jackson Hollow

Robyn & Ryleigh


Male Vocalist of the Year

Aaron Pritchett

Chad Brownlee

Dallas Smith

Ben Klick

JoJo Mason


Mike Norman All Star Band – Bass

Dennis Marcenko

Kirby Barber

Rob Becker

Scott Cooke

Michael Vanderlans

Phil Bell


Mike Norman All Star Band – Drums

Pat Steward

Tobi Duquette

Dylan Weightman

Seamus O’Neill

Taylor Allum

Flavio Cirillo


Mike Norman All Star Band – Guitar

Darren Savard

Jay Buettner

Ben Klick

Dave Barber

Jeremy Breaks

Jesse Burch


Mike Norman All Star Band – Keyboard

Carly McKillip

Darryl Havers

Marc Gladstone

Peter James

Robbie Buchanan

Simon Kendall


Mike Norman All Star Band – Special Instrument

John Ellis – Steel Guitar

Matt Rose – Banjo

Scott Smith – Steel Guitar

Mike Sanyshyn – Fiddle

Ben Beveridge – Fiddle

Philip Puxley – Banjo


Producer of the Year

Mitch Merrett

Scott Cooke

Jeff Johnson

Dan Swinimer

Sheldon Zaharko

Carly McKillip


Radio Station of the Year

Country 107.1 – Abbotsford

Country 103.1 – Kamloops

Country 100.7 – Kelowna/Penticton

Country 93.7 – Vancouver

Country 100.1 – Moose FM


Ray McAuley Horizon Award

The Heels

Andrew Christopher

Lanie McAuley

Dave Hartney

Shylo Sharity


Recording Studio of the Year

Zed Productions

Studio Downe Under

Manic Down Studios

604 Records

Bailey Way Entertainment


Roots Canadiana of the Year Award

Twin Kennedy

GB Roots

The Matinee

The Washboard Union

Ajaye Jardine


Single of the Year Award

Madeline Merlo – What Ya Wanna Do About It

Dallas Smith – One Little Kiss

JoJo Mason – Good Kinda Love

The Washboard Union – Maybe It’s The Moonshine

Chad Brownlee – I Hate You For It

Aaron Pritchett – Dirt Road In Em


Socan Songwriter of the Year Award

Chad Brownlee – I Hate You For It (Chad Brownlee, Mitch Merrett, Ben Glover)

JoJo Mason – Good Kinda Love (Dan Swinimer & JoJo Mason)

Chris Buck Band – Giddy Up (Jeff Johnson, Chris Buck, Phil Puxley & Mitch Merrett)

Danielle Marie – Drive Away (Danielle Marie, Byron Hill )

The Washboard Union – Maybe It’s The Moonshine (Chris Duncombe, David Roberts, Aaron Grain, Witt McKay & Grant Vogelfanger)

Ben Klick – Butterfly Tattoo (Ben Klick, Rylee Madison)


Video Director of the Year Award

Gene Greenwood (Robyn & Ryleigh)

Stephano Barberis (Dallas Smith/Chad Brownlee/Bucko & Toad/Jesse Mast)

Dermot King (Chris Buck Band)

Cole Northey (Aaron Pritchett)

Stefan Berrill (The Washboard Union)


Video of the Year Award

Chris Buck – Giddy Up

Aaron Pritchett – Dirt Road In Em

Dallas Smith – One Little Kiss

The Washboard Union – Maybe It’s The Moonshine

Madeline Merlo – War Paint

Chad Brownlee – I Hate You For It


Humanitarian of the Year Award

Chad Brownlee – Tim Hortons

Kenny Hess – Rockin’ River Music Schools/Food Bank

Casey Clarke/Roo Phelps – Purple Day (centre for epilepsy & seizure education)

Chris & Jamie Ruscheinski – Twins Cancer Gone Country

Todd Richard – Variety Club


Website of the Year Award

Ben Klick – Ben Klick

The Washboard Union – Chris Duncombe

Dallas Smith – Harmonic Concepts

Chris Buck Band – Chris Buck & Chris Smolko

Aaron  Pritchett – Bryan McCrae

Ajaye Jardine – Jasper Anson

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