Cincinnati Entertainment Awards Return Sunday

Annual celebration of Greater Cincinnati musicians enters 16th year

click to enlarge CEAs (Photo: Cameron Knight)
CEAs (Photo: Cameron Knight)

The 16th annual Cincinnati Entertainment Awards

take place at the Madison Theater in Covington this Sunday. Doors open at 6 p.m. and the show starts at 7 p.m.

The CEAs are a party, first and foremost, for local musicians (nominated or not), but also for the fans that nurture and support them. 

The “ceremony” part of the awards show mostly entails the doling out of trophies to the winners, primarily chosen by the artists’ fans via online voting. But this isn’t some stuffy, self-congratulatory snooze fest. The CEAs have featured some great, unique performances in their history and this edition is no different. 

This year’s CEA performances include short sets from nominees like Indie Pop duo Bad Veins

, Punk Rock faves The Dopamines , soulful vocalist Jess Lamb and her band, eclectic Hip Hop/Rock band Gold Shoes and Boogie Woogie Blues pianist Ricky Nye (who will be joined by some special guests).

The Cincinnati USA Music Heritage Foundation has also organized an all-star jam of sorts, with a performance featuring several local Roots artists — including Mark Utley of Magnolia Mountain and David Rhodes Brown — who participated in the Come Play the Lost Notebooks of Hank Williams at Herzog sessions. The CUMHF re-recorded four songs from the 2011 compilation, The Lost Notebooks of Hank Williams, which featured artists like Bob Dylan and Jack White performing newly written songs based on lyrics found with Williams at the time of his death in 1953. The all-star crew assembled downtown at CUMHF headquarters in the same space Williams recorded some of his biggest early hits (when it was Herzog studios) and released the results as a four-song EP. The CEA VIP tickets — available at for $50 — benefit the non-profit CUMHF; VIPs receive a membership to the organization and other goodies.

Your CEA ticket — available now for $20 through — also gets you into the legendary/infamous CEA after-party, this year held at The Loft (100 W. Sixth St., above Tickets) immediately after the Madison event ends. 

The after-party includes the awarding of the Fashion Trashies, The Fairmount Girls’ funky version of a red-carpet fashion show. Look your best on the red carpet before the CEAs and you might just receive one of the coveted, handmade trophies at the post-show soiree.

The after-party will also feature funny first-time CEA ceremony host Ted Clark of late-night live talk show Ted Clark After Dark. Clark will present his talk show at The Loft as part of the festivities. There will also be free food and drink specials. 

As a refresher, the following are are this year’s CEA nominees:


: Buffalo Killers; Mad Anthony; The KillTones; The Harlequins; Lemon Sky; Mangrenade 


: The Tillers; Magnolia Mountain; Shiny and The Spoon; Young Heirlooms; Josh Eagle and the Harvest City; The Kentucky Struts


: You, You’re Awesome; Playfully Yours; Moonbow; Freekbot; Skeleton Hands; Skeetones 

World Music/Reggae

: Orquesta Kandela; The Cliftones; The Pinstripes; Baoku Moses; Tropicoso; Junya Be 

Hard Rock

: Valley of the Sun; The Mighty Swine; Chakras; Atlantis Becoming; Specyphi; Total Dudes


: Kelly Thomas; Jeremy Pinnell & The 55’s; Tex Schramm & The Radio King Cowboys; Mason James; Dallas Moore Band; Ryan Broshear


: Wussy; The Seedy Seeds; Automagik; Bad Veins; Why?; The Yugos


: Rumpke Mountain Boys; Comet Bluegrass All Stars; Ma Crow and the Lady Slippers; Hickory Robot; Rabbit Hash String Band; Rattlesnakin’ Daddies


: Pete Dressman; Mark Utley; Zak Morgan; Josh Eagle; Jeremy Pinnell; Kelly Thomas


: Switchblade Syndicate; The Dopamines; Swear Jar; Mixtapes; Horsecop; Martin Luther and the Kings 

Hip Hop

: J Skillz; Those Guys; The Natives; Gold Shoes; Eclipse; Santino Corleon


: Noah Wotherspoon Band; Ricky Nye; Leo Clarke Band; Natalie Wells; 46 Long; Grooveshire


: Beneath Oblivion; Grey Host; Winterhymn; Scarangella; Pulse 8; Livid


: The Cincy Brass; Los Honchos; Sassafraz; Jess Lamb; The Guitars; The MJ’S Blues 


: The Faux Frenchmen; Blue Wisp Big Band; Us, Today; William Menefield; John Zappa; Jamset

Best Live Act

: Foxy Shazam; 500 Miles to Memphis; The Newbees; Why?; Walk the Moon; Automagik

New Artist Of the Year

: Jeremy Pinnell and the 55’s; DAAP Girls; Ohio Knife; The Natives; R. Ring; Public; Heavy Hinges

Album Of The Year

: Bad Veins – The Mess We’ve Made ; Buffalo Killers – Dig.Sow.Love.Grow ; Culture Queer – Nightmare Band ; The Happy Maladies – New Again ; Hickory Robot – Sawyer ; The Pinstripes – I ; Rumpke Mountain Boys – Trashgrass ; Wussy – Strawberry

Artist Of The Year

: Alone at 3AM; Bad Veins; Foxy Shazam; The Pinstripes; Pomegranates; Walk the Moon; Why?; Wussy

CONTACT MIKE BREEN : [email protected] , @CityBeatMusic or on Facebook here .

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