Allison Russell and Billy Strings were among the winners at last night’s 21st Annual Americana Honors & Awards. Russell’s Outside Child was named Album of the Year, following up on her International Album victory at the UK Americana Awards in January, while Strings was named Artist of the Year.
In a star-packed events ceremony at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium, Brandi Carlile won her sixth Americana Award as the co-writer of “Right On Time,” from her 2021 album In These Silent Times, with Dave Cobb, Phil Hanseroth, and Tim Hanseroth. The War and Treaty were named Duo/Group of the Year, while Sierra Ferrell was honored as Emerging Act of the Year and Larissa Maestro as Instrumentalist of the Year.
Previously announced Lifetime Achievement Awards went to the Fairfield Four, the Indigo Girls, Chris Isaak (presented by Lyle Lovett, with whom he has been touring), Al Bell and, posthumously, Don Williams, with another surprise award in that category given to longtime Americana mainstay Buddy Miller. As he has for most of the history of the awards, he was leading the house band at the three-hour-plus show, and his award was presented by his longtime collaborator Robert Plant, with whom he has also served as band leader during Plant’s work with Alison Krauss.
Carlile and Russell performed the latter’s collaborative new single “You’re Not Alone” during the show, at which Carlile sang her own “You and Me on the Rock” with Lucius, reprising their role on the version from her album. There were also performances by honorees Isaak, Ferrell, and The Waran and Treaty and by nominees Adia Victoria, James McMurtry, Neal Francis, Morgan Wade, and the Indigo Girls.
The Americana Honors & Awards show will air, for the second year in a row, on broadcast partners Circle Network, on Wednesday, November 23 at 9pm CT. Additional details on how to watch are here. There will be a later PBS program, ACL Presents: The 21st Annual Americana Honors airing as a special episode of Austin City Limits and featuring performance highlights.