FAQs

When do nominations begin and end?

The 2020 Wammie Awards public nominations open on December 1, 2019 and close on January 31, 2020. Nominations for the 2020 Wammie Awards must be for music releases debuted in the calendar year of 2019 between January 1 and December 31. 

The nomination period happens in two phases:

  • Step 1: Submit nominations for your Favorite Artist/Band from December 1, 2019 – January 31, 2020
  • Step 2: Vote for the winner from the 2020 Wammies Finalists from January 1, 2019 – January 31, 2020

Who can nominate artists/bands?

Anyone whose current residence is in Washington DC, Virginia, or Maryland may nominate. More than one nomination can be submitted for each award category, but you cannot nominate the same artist, for the same award, multiple times (Ex:  Joe Public can submit Band A, Band B, and Band C in the Best Rock Album Category. However, Joe Public cannot submit Band A three times for the Best Rock Album Category).

How are artists/bands nominated?

Anyone living in DC, Maryland, or Virginia can nominate artists, by completing a nomination form on our nomination page.

Is there a regional requirement for eligibility?

Yes. In order to be eligible, you must live within the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. Please see the map here that illustrates our eligibility region. If a nominee is based beyond the highlighted region, they are ineligible to be nominated.

How is a band, or artists, location determined?

Yes. In order to be eligible, artists must be based within the Washington, DC, metropolitan area. Please see our area map here that illustrates our eligibility region. If a nominee is based beyond the highlighted region, they are ineligible to be nominated.

What is The MusicianShip?

The MusicianShip is a DC-based 501(c)(3) that facilitates music lessons, experiences, and opportunities for youth who need us most. In 2020, we will serve over 1,800 youth through after-school programs, summer programs, and master class programs in DC, South Africa, and France. In addition to producing the Wammie Awards, we are also the new home of the DC Funk Parade. Please visit TheMusicianShip.org to learn more!

What is an ``album``?

An album is a compilation of at least (5) songs which an artist formally, and professionally, recorded, produced, and released for public consumption between January 1st – December 31st of 2019. To be eligible for a Wammie Award, we require that an album be published on at least (2) public music streaming platforms including:  iTunes, Spotify, Amazon, Google Play, Tidal, Deezer, SoundCloud and BandCamp. YouTube Releases will not be considered for the 2020 Awards Season.

What happens if there is a tie for votes between artists to become a finalist?

If there is a tie for votes for 7th Place (Top 7 Finalists go to judges), then all artists involved in the tie for 7th place will advance to the Final Judging round.

Who decides which nominees become finalists?

The top seven (7) most nominated artists/groups, who are eligible, become finalists.

How are winners selected?

The public submits nominations for each category.  The top 7 most nominated artists/bands become finalists and are judged by dozens of subject matter experts, which include local musicians, radio hosts, music journalists, DJ’s, and other creative peers who understand, and influence, the regions music industry.  The finalist with the highest score, in each category, wins.

What is a ``release``?

A release is a song or recording which an artist formally, and professionally, recorded, produced, and released for public consumption between January 1st – December 31st of 2019. To be eligible for a Wammie Award, we require that a release be published on at least (2) public music streaming platforms including:  iTunes, Spotify, Amazon, Google Play, Tidal, Deezer, SoundCloud and BandCamp. YouTube Releases will not be considered for the 2020 Awards Season.

What are the Wammie Award Categories?

This year’s award categories are (new/updated awards are in blue):

Artistic Categories

  • Best Acapella Artist/Group
  • Best Bluegrass Album
  • Best Bluegrass Artist/Group
  • Best Blues Album
  • Best Blues Artist/Group
  • Best Children’s Music Artist/Group
  • Best Choral Album
  • Best Choral Group
  • Best Classical Album
  • Best Classical Artist/Group
  • Best Country/Americana Album
  • Best Country/Americana Artist/Group
  • Best Electronic/Techno Artist/Group
  • Best Folk Album
  • Best Folk Artist/Group
  • Best Funk Album
  • Best Funk Artist/Group
  • Best Funk Song
  • Best Gogo Album
  • Best Gogo Artist/Group
  • Best Gogo Song
  • Best Gospel Album
  • Best Gospel Artist/Group
  • Best Gospel Song
  • Best Hard Rock Album
  • Best Hard Rock Artist/Group
  • Best Hard Rock Song
  • Best Hip Hop Album
  • Best Hip Hop Artist/Group
  • Best Hip Hop Song
  • Best Jazz Album
  • Best Jazz Artist/Group
  • Best Jazz Song
  • Best Latin Album
  • Best Latin Artist/Group
  • Best Pop Album
  • Best Pop Artist/Group
  • Best Pop Song
  • Best Punk Album
  • Best Punk Artist/Group
  • Best Punk Song
  • Best R&B Album
  • Best R&B Artist/Group
  • Best R&B Song
  • Best Rap Album
  • Best Rap Artist/Group
  • Best Rap Song
  • Best Reggae Album
  • Best Reggae Artist/Group
  • Best Rock Album
  • Best Rock Artist/Group
  • Best Rock Song
  • Best Soul Album
  • Best Soul Artist/Group
  • Best Soul Song
  • Best World Music Album
  • Best World Music Artist/Group

General Interest Categories

  • Do Good Award:  Artist, musician, band, or institution that has championed a cause that benefits the DMV music community as a whole.
  • Educator Award: Artist, musician, or band that has made the most noteworthy effort to work with DMV Youth in an educational capacity.
  • Music Media Award: Best Website, media platform, or social media account that has done the most to enrich, educate and entertain DMV creatives.
  • Best Music Studio Award: Determined by DC, MD & VA residents based on their opinion of the studio’s services, accomplishments & staff.
  • Advocacy Award: The individual or group who has undertaken efforts to postively affect legislation and/or policy that positively impacts the arts in the DMV.
  • Best Music Venue Award: Determined by DC, MD, VA residents based on their opinion of the venue’s events, customer service & food/bar menu.

There used to be more categories? What happened?

With this being The MusicianShip’s second year of producing the Wammie Awards, we wanted to consolidate the number of awards to a manageable amount, focusing on categories that are hyper-active in the greater DC region. We will consider adding more award categories in the future, and welcome your feedback on which awards to include at hello@wammiesDC.org.

Why must nominees, finalists, and winners pay to attend the award show?

Historically, WAMA members paid membership dues and paid to attend the Wammie Awards. The MusicianShip is not a membership association and, therefore, does not charge dues. Instead, in an effort to make the award show sustainable, we ask that nominees, finalists, and winners pay a discounted price to our award show and conference.

What is the attire for the Wammie Awards?

Attire for the Wammie Awards Show on March 29 is formal — dress to impress!

If I am a former WAMA member, and released a Project in 2016 or 2017, am I eligible for a 2020 Wammie Award?

No, unfortunately. When WAMA transferred their assets to The MusicianShip, we were faced with some challenging decisions – this being one. To honor WAMA members’ tireless dedication, over the last 34 years, we are offering discounted Wammie Weekend tickets to former WAMA members. We hope to see you out and retain your support!

Can an artist have multiple songs nominated in the same award category? (For Example: Two different songs in the Best Pop Song category)

Yes! But only one song per artist can advance to the finalist round. If there’s more than one song by an artist in the same category, the song with the most votes will be chosen to represent that artist in the Final Judging round.

Why are the awards for some genres different than others?

For the 2020 Wammie Awards, we strived for equity, in terms of which genres we included, while emphasizing genres that are hyper-active in, and unique to, this region. As we aim to be responsive to the musical interests of this region, we take your feedback seriously and look forward to your input in future years.

Why must nominees' music be on Apple, Spotify, Google Play, Amazon, Tidal, Deezer, SoundCloud, and BandCamp?

The Wammie Awards Steering Committee specifically chose this array of streaming services to create an equitable playing field for content submission in our region of coverage. While we want artists’ music to be enjoyed locally, in order to raise the profile of DC-area music, we want to encourage our creative community to strive for publishing music that can be consumed globally.

Are all awards going to be announced at the Award Show?

No. Some awards will be announced at the Wammie Award Show on Sunday evening. Others will be announced at our Wammie Weekend Day Conference on Saturday. Please sign up for our newsletter to learn which awards will be announced when!

What happened to the Washington Area Music Association (WAMA)?

After 34 years of doing great work in the DC Metropolitan Area, WAMA made the difficult decision to dissolve, amidst challenges faced by the organization and leadership. Instead of discontinuing the Wammie Awards, WAMA decided that The Wammies needed a new, mission-aligned, home that could preserve this important DC-Area treasure. On March 9, 2018, the WAMA Board adopted a resolution, with the dual intent of dissolving and transferring all remaining assets to The MusicianShip – including the right to produce the Wammies. Many WAMA Board members remain involved and are on The MusicianShip’s Steering Committee for the Wammie Awards.