Tillers’ Folly wins big at IMA awards
Maple Ridge’s own Tillers’ Folly beat out hundreds of acts to take home the top prize at the 11th annual Independent Music Awards Vox Pop Poll in the coveted Top Song in the Social Cause category.
Tillers’ Folly joins more than 70 exceptional self-released and independent label artists, as well as former major label acts lifted from a nominated list of more than 340 acts to win the in the prestigious awards program, voted online by more than 60,000 music fans from around the globe.
The local acoustic roots band won for its song Death & Taxes, which finds members paired with guest vocalists Josh Shilling (Mountain Heart) and legendary singer John Cowan (New Grass Revival, Doobie Brothers).
Bruce Coughlan, Tillers’ Folly’s songwriter and lead vocalist, says he knew Death & Taxes had the potential to be something very special. But it was not until the band and manager Brian Smith were discussing options for recording the song and Smith floated the idea of having Cowan and Shilling add their talents that the bands excitement level rose.
Cowan and Shilling were also excited to take part.
“Singing on Death & Taxes was a huge honor for me simply because I found out I’d be singing with one of my heroes, John Cowan,” says Shilling.
“Then, I heard the tune and was blown away by the songwriting and how original the band’s sound was.”
The honour the song has received is well-earned, given Coughlan’s skills as a songwriter, says Cowan.
“Bruce seems to be concerned with and committed to ‘the song’. In the same regard that Gordon Lightfoot, Lyle Lovett, Townes Van Zandt, Guy Clark, Rodney Crowell, Jackson Browne, James Taylor, Joni Mitchell and folks like Darrell Scott are,” he says. “He works at it with discipline, a sense of wonder, and trying to honor the very craft of it. I think his results speak for themselves.”
The other 11th IMA winners, along with Tiller’s Folly, are an eclectic mix of established artists and artists on the rise, covering a broad spectrum of today’s global independent music scene. The nominees, in more than 70 song, album, music video and design categories were culled from thousands of submissions from North America, South America, Asia, Africa, Australia and Europe.
“The Independent Music Awards celebrate musicians who follow their own muse and empower music fans who support these extraordinary recording artists,” says IMA Executive Director Martin Folkman. “The Vox Pop Award is one of the many ways The IMA’s motivates fans to discover and support incredible, independent talent.”
Death & Taxes is from Tillers’ Folly’s acclaimed 2012 self-released album Go The Road. The all-acoustic album continues Tiller’s musical move in a refreshing new direction and promises to introduce them to new audiences in the bluegrass, folk and Americana markets.
Along with Cowan and Shilling, the final list of album guest artists includes Sam Bush (Newgrass Revival/Sam Bush Band), Ronnie McCoury (Del McCoury Band/The Travelin McCoury’s), Cia Cherryholmes (The Cherryholmes), Scottish Music Hall of Fame member Phil Cunningham (Phil & Ali), legendary singer/songwriter/producer Wendy Waldman, Scott Vestal (Sam Bush Band), Jeff Autry (John Cowan Band/The Travelin McCoury’s) and Randy Kohrs (Randy Kohrs Band/Jim Lauderdale/Dolly Parton).
Tillers’ Folly is Bruce Coughlan (songwriter, lead vocals, guitar, bodhran, flute, whistle), Nolan Murray (fiddle, mandolin, mandocaster, banjo, viola, guitar), and Laurence Knight (producer, bass, vocals).
• To learn more about Tiller’s Folly visit www.tillersfolly.com