The Motor City has a long history of being a metropolis of innovation and incubation for music of all genres and realms. From Motown to techno to rock 'n' roll, Detroit has seen its share of insanely talented musicians come up here, leave, come back, stay and most certainly support each other. No matter where our beloved city stands in terms of economy or cultural movements, the one thing we've been able to count on is great music coming out of Detroit.
The Detroit Music Awards Foundation was born in 1988, and although the first awards show wasn't held until 1992 (at the State Theatre, still the awards' home but now known as the Fillmore), it's been a shining beacon of support for local musicians working on a national, regional and local level.
The DMAs aren't simply about recognizing up-and-coming or established local artists, either. They're about showcasing our gifted local artists through performances and achievement awards. In the past, the DMAs have seen live performances by Eminem, Kid Rock, Smokey Robinson, Bob Seger, Grand Funk Railroad, George Clinton with Parliament, Ted Nugent, Insane Clown Posse and many, many more.
Covering everything from classical to hip-hop to gospel, and from sound techs to recording studios, the DMAs do their best to recognize every aspect of local music. 2011's multi-award winners included Eminem, Ty Stone, Lola Morales, Jill Jack, Johnnie Bassett, God's Army, Sarana VerLin and Distorted Soul.
Additionally, the DMAs present an honorary award yearly to deserving artists or groups for their achievement. And, in light of the general populace and the progression of technology, they've been awarding a People's Choice Award, voted on via the Internet.
Additionally, proceeds from emerging artist showcases throughout the year – in addition to the awards show – are used to present and promote educational events and resources to local musicians.
This year's performances include Pleasure Seekers/Cradle, Amy Gore and Her Valentines with Gorevette, Black Milk, Savage Grace with the Grande Ballroom All-Stars, Ben Sharkey, Planet D Nonet and Paulina Jayne. Distinguished Achievement Awards will be given to Saint Andrew's Hall, Detroit Dog Rescue and Pleasure Seekers/Cradle. | RDW