(Anthony Rosano & The Conqueroos, pictured with Bob Seger at Madison Square Garden, won the live performance and blues categories. Photo courtesy of the band.)

By Jeff Maisey

On Tuesday night, The Vanguard Brewpub in Hampton hosted the 2020 Veer Music Awards — considered the local version of the Grammy’s — to a packed house filled with the full spectrum of the music industry in Hampton Roads.

Scoring two awards each were Anthony Rosano & the Conqueroos (Best Blues and Best Live Performance categories) and Williamsburg-based Good Shot Judy (Music Video of the Year and a new combined Swing/Rockabilly/Old-time category).

The musical theme for the event was a Tribute to Queen, and among the highlights was a thrilling performance of “Bohemian Rhapsody” by Deja & Friends, which included members of thematic tribute band Deja, The Deloreans, and Strictly Bizzness.

In addition to the various awards categories, the Veer Magazine staff selected several individuals to recognize in non-voting categories. 

A Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to each Don Butcher and Vaughn Deel for their longtime dedication to open mic nights and singer/songwriters on the Peninsula. A Lifetime Achievement Award was also presented to the members of MSG Acoustic Blues Trio for their commitment to preserving traditional, acoustic-based Piedmont blues. 

Dee Larion of Live Nation received our Industry Award for her continued help to local bands, facilitating opportunities on the big stage as she did in 2019 for Anthony Rosano & the Conqueroos when they opened for Bob Seger at Veterans United Home Loans Amphitheater in Virginia Beach, and eventually Madison Square Garden in NYC. 

Drew Orton, who plays drums for Demons as well as Bennett Wales & The Relief, was presented the Musician’s Musician Award.

Following are the results from the 2020 Veer Music Awards. They are list as the Top 10 in our large combined genre categories and a Top 5 finishers in each of the specific genres. 

Congrats to all. Support your local music scene!

Album of the Year 

1. Ben Phelps Project, “Wake Up the Guards”

2. Runnin’ Shine, “So There We Were”

3. Super Doppler, “Super Doppler”

4. Cultivated Mind, “No Quarter for Thieves”

5. Jae Sinnett Zero to 60 Quartet, “Just When You Thought”

6. Fox and the Bear, “We Will Be Alright”

7. K’Bana Blaq, “The World on Pause”

8. Tornado Bait, “Teacup’s Half Full”

9. Mosquito Cabaret, “The Modern Life of Insects”

10. Narissa Bond, “Rhythm of Love”


EP of the Year 

1. Lucky 757, “Memphis Sun”

2. Court Street Company, “Olde Towne”

3. Lena Klett, “Ascend”

4. Kristi K, “Kings + Queens”

5. Snake Mountain Revival, “The Valley of Madness” 

6. Suburban Key Party, “2nd Place Medals”

7. The Lifehacks, “Toothpick”

8. Rose Milk, “Linda Blair”

9. The Muddy Gems, “Tidewater Itch”

10. The Lazy Dangers, “Lost Dogs”


Song of the Year 

1. BJ Griffin & The Galaxy Groove, “On My Mind”

2. The Ben Phelps Project, “Rendezvous”

3. Runnin’ Shine, “Tequila and Shame”

4. Demons, “Uglier Americans”

5. Super Doppler, “You Don’t Love Me”

6. Court Street Company, “Indigo” 

7. Travelers, “Uh-Oh” 

8. Tornado Bait, “Teacups Half Full”

9. Suburban Key Party, “Tripping Inside My Head”

10. K’Bana Blaq, “Stop Doubting” 


Music Video of the Year 

1. Good Shot Judy, “Love” 

2. Travelers, “Uh-Oh”

3. Buckshot, “Freedom Ain’t Free” 

4. Tornado Bait, “Teacup’s Half Full”

5. The Lifehacks, “Toothpick” 

6. Moaning Lisas, “Kick Me” 

7. Runnin’ Shine, “Shotgun” 

8. Big Al Staggs, “Been There Done That”

9. K’Bana Blaq, “Stop Doubting”

10. The Purge, “Rain”


Producer of the Year   

1. Kim Person

2. Christopher Wiles 

3. Rob Ulsh

4. Jordan Greenough

5. Ced Hughes



1. Super Doppler

2. Court Street Company

3. Pain in the Yeahs

4. Ladada

5. Travelers



1. The New Mutiny

2. Heretics in the Lab


4. Suffocating Empathy 




1. Bennett Wales & The Relief

2. Ben Phelps Project 

3. The Lifehacks 

4. Lena Klett 

5. Big Al Staggs



1. I Fight Vampires

2. The Great Dismal Swamis

3. The Nerve Scheme

4. Rose Milk

5. Single-Use Plastic



1. Good Shot Judy 

2. Lucky 757

3. Tornado Bait

4. The Muddy Gems

5. The Janks


Psychedelic/Jam Band

1. Snake Mountain Revival

2. Galaxy Dynamite 

3. Delirious George 

4. Bad Weather Birds

5. Bended Light



1. Jae Sinnett’s Zero to 60 Quartet

2. Sam Rucker 

3. John Toomey

4. Eddie Williams Trio 

5. J Staton



1. The Fuzz Band

2. K’Bana Blaq 

3. Carlos Armon 

4. BJ Griffin & Galaxy Groove 

5. Ashley Felder


Hip Hop

1. Ghetto Chris

2. Dariel Clark 

3. Antagonist Dragonspit

4. Ced Hughes

5. A. Driver



1. Brackish Water Jamboree

2. Roebuck

3. House of Cards

4. St. Juliens Creek Revival

5. Chisman Creek Band



1. Buckshot

2. Runnin’ Shine 

3. Celeste Kellogg

4. Laura Rice

5. Acredale



1. Fox & the Bear

2. Mark Rogers 

3. Dustin Furlow

4. Narissa Bond

5. The Storyweavers



1. Anthony Rosano & The Conqueroos

2. Bobby Black Hat Walters

3. Jason Cale

4. Jackie Scott

5. Tom Euler



1. The Purge

2. Broken Beaches 

3. Crash Mosaic

4. Hindu Pez

5. Chippy



1. Bantustans

2. Reptile Tile

3. Bunnie Crisp

4. Oahu

5. Trial of the Golden Witch


Cover Band

1. Krunch

2. The Deloreans

3. Michael Clark Band

4. Everafter

5. Strictly Bizzness 


World Music

1. Mosquito Cabaret 

2. United Souls

3. Cultivated Mind

4. Dharma Initiative

5. Buddha Council



1. Voices of Fire

2. The New Pearly Gates

3. Jonah’s Run

4. Pastor Byron Joyce & Paul Urban

5. Tory Slade and 409


Open Mic Night 

1. Abbey Road w/Doyle & Dunn

2. Froggies w/Fred Karam

3. South Beach Grill w/Dahna Rowe

4. C.I.P.H.E.R. Tuesdays 

5. Fairgrounds w/Ronnie Talman


Live Performer 

1. Anthony Rosano & The Conqueroos

2. The Fuzz Band

3. The Fighting Jamesons

4. Bennett Wales & The Relief

5. Lucky 757



1. DJ Bee

2. Sir Lord Thomas

3. Andra Corinne Rosenberg 

4. Fake Uzumi

5. TMobyle


Media Promoting Local Music

1. Hampton Roads Show

2. Out of the Box/WHRV-FM

3. 757 Roxx 

4. The Antonym

5. HardcoreNorfolk


Music Venue Small (Under 300)

1. Froggies

2. Taphouse Grill

3. Brown Chicken Brown Cow 

4. Precarious Beer Hall

5. Charlie’s American Cafe 


Music Venue Medium (300 to 1,000)

1. Elevation 27

2. The Vanguard Brewpub

3. Attucks Theatre

4. The Bunker

5. The American Theatre


Music Venue Large (Non-arena, 1,000 or More)

1. The NorVa

2. Ferguson Center 

3. Sandler Center

4. Chrysler Hall

5. Waterside District


Local Music Promoter/Booking Agent

1. Dave Derring/Rockstar Booking

2. LAVA Presents

3. Jim Morrison

4. Blue Pyramid Productions/Jay Lang

5. TBA Productions


Outdoor Music Festival  

  2. American Music Festival 
  3. Norfolk Harborfest

4. Stockley Gardens Arts Festival

5. LAVA Halloween Extravaganza


Concert Series (featuring local musicians/bands)

1. YNOT Wednesdays at Sandler Center

2. Downtown Hampton Block Party

3. Out of the Box Series at Sandler Center

4. LAVA Mini Series

5. Big Pink Music: In the Round


Music Instrument Retailer 

1. Alpha Music 

2. Russell’s Music World

3. Guitar Center 

4. Music Go Round 

5. Moe’s Music


Photography Posed

1. Bennett Wales & The Relief by Will Clarke

2. Dariel Clark by Jeff Hewitt

3. Legin – Fear Not by Annette Holloway Photography

4. Anthony Rosano & The Conqueroos by Jeremy Mangrum/BFF Shoots

5. Red Stapler Duo by Loren Hoffmann


Photography Live

1. Super Doppler at Lava MiniFest by Sean Chagnon/Eye of the Storm Photography

2. Larry May of The Candy Snatchers at Taphouse Grill by Jeff Hewitt

3. Demons at Taphouse Grill by Joe Justice

4. Anthony Rosano at Elevation27 by Michael Iwanoski

5. Nervous System at Charlie’s American Cafe by Keith Baillargeon/KGB Photography