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Billy Blue Records Congratulations IBMA Award Nominees

Just a year old, bluegrass label racks up 10 award nominations

Nashville, TENN — The doors to Billy Blue Records opened just a little over a year ago with the motto, “We’re Here To Play.” The burgeoning bluegrass label has not, however, played around at the business of music; signing and releasing projects by iconic artists, and racking up top-charting radio singles.

Just weeks after marking its one year anniversary, Billy Blue Records’ artists and projects garnered 10 nominations for the upcoming International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) Awards.

“I am so very proud today of all of our artists and our entire Billy Blue Records team, and extremely grateful to the bluegrass community, and our many friends in radio for their support this past year,”  says Jerry Salley, Creative and A&R Director. “We appreciate just how blessed we are.”

Billy Blue Records is named in seven award categories including New Artist, Collaborative Project, Album, Entertainer, and Vocal Group of the Year; with multiple nominees in the Gospel Recording and Song of the Year categories.

The Billy Blue roster touts Appalachian Road Show, Jason Barie, Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers, and Donna Ulisse. The work of prolific songwriter, Rick Lang, is highlighted on the BBR album Gonna Sing, Gonna Shout, which produced two of the label’s nominations in the Gospel Recording category.

The IBMA awards will be presented on September 26 at the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts in Raleigh, North Carolina as part of the annual World of BluegrassSeptember 24-28.

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Formed over 19 years ago by Deon & Susan Unthank originally as SoGospelNews.com, the site was birthed from an email discussion group by the same name. The SoGospelNews email discussion list was created by the Unthanks after the Singing News shut down its extremely popular discussion list. SoGospelNews started as a simple webpage listing artists, fans, individuals, etc. that were avid supporters of the newly formed SoGospelNews talk list. The site eventually took on printing news for Southern Gospel artists, and eventually took on reviewing the latest recordings from both signed and independent artists within the small genre. SoGospelNews became the most viewed Southern Gospel website on the Internet with over 4,000,000 hits per month.

The Unthank family are now involved in the site, as well as the addition of over two dozen staff writers. The website is based out of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. In April 2010, SoGospelNews changed its name to AbsolutelyGospel.com. The name change allows them to cover news items of not only Southern Gospel, but also Country Gospel, Inspirational, and Black Gospel.

On January 5, 2011, Susan Unthank passed away, leaving the website in control of Deon, their son, Chris, and their daughter Amy.

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