The Schitzophonics celebrate their win.
  • The Schitzophonics celebrate their win.
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The 23rd Annual San Diego Music Awards took place October 16 at Humphrey’s by Bay before a sold-out crowd of 1344. Presented by the nonprofit San Diego Music Foundation and organized by Kevin Hellman, the event raised $16,742 for the Guitars for Schools program, bringing guitars and music education into area schools in conjunction with Taylor guitars. Originally scheduled for October 9, the show was moved to its new date due to rain.

Sara Petite just prior to her win for Best Americana

Sara Petite just prior to her win for Best Americana

Performers on the night included Sara Petite and the Sugar Daddies, the Blackout Party, Palace Ballroom, Sara Watkins, Tristan Prettyman, and Lifetime Achievement Award winner Daniel Jackson. The show's shift to a week later meant that Heavy Guilt, who was already committed to a West Coast tour, ended up being replaced by Old Tiger. This worked out perfectly as Old Tiger took home the “Best Pop Album” award for their disc, Love Have Mercy and the Heavy Guilt won a trophy for “Best Alternative Group.”

Trio Old Tiger took home an SDMA for best pop album, Love have Mercy.

Trio Old Tiger took home an SDMA for best pop album, Love have Mercy.

Twenty-eight awards were handed out by an array of local TV and radio personalities, ranging from FM 94.9 DJ Tim Pyles to Sound Diego host Daye Salini, with the biggest response to any of the presenters being for KUSI’s Michael Turko. Two new awards debuted this year, “Best Live Band,” which went to the Creepy Creeps, and “Best Music video,” which was won by Slightly Stoopid for their clip “Don’t Stop.”

Jazz cats Rob Thorsen, Wayne Riker, and multiple-award-winner Gilbert Castellanos!

Jazz cats Rob Thorsen, Wayne Riker, and multiple-award-winner Gilbert Castellanos!

The show, which is programmed to the minute, ran smoothly and on time, though Jackson, who was backed by an all-star combo that included pianist Mike Wofford and bassist Marshall Hawkins, performed a second, non-scheduled song, much to the surprise of organizers, but to the clear delight of the audience who gave Jackson several standing ovations.

The night’s big winner was jazz trumpeter Gilbert Castellanos, who took home three trophies including Artist of the Year, Best Jazz Artist, and Best Jazz Album, for his disc The Federal Jazz Project. Silent Comedy was the only other band to score more than one award, taking home both Best Pop Artist and Song of the Year for their tune "God Neon."

During his onstage presentation about the event, Hellman pointed out that this award show is about more than just celebrating San Diego’s musicians. "Forty-five-thousand kids have used those guitars. That’s a lot of kids," he said, holding up a giant oversized check. “We can't thank you enough for continuing to support music in our community."

The 2013 San Diego Music Awards Winners:

Artist of the Year – Gilbert Castellanos

Album of the Year – The Burning of Rome / “With Us

Song of the Year – The Silent Comedy / “God Neon”

Lifetime Achievement Award – Daniel Jackson

Best New Artist – Soda Pants

Best Live Performer –The Creepy Creeps

Best Music Video by a San Diego Artist – Slightly Stoopid / “Don't Stop”

Best Jazz – Gilbert Castellanos

Best Jazz Album – Gilbert Castellanos / “Federal Jazz Project”

Best Singer/Songwriter – Gayle Skidmore

Best Alternative – The Heavy Guilt

Best Alternative Album – The Night Marchers / “Allez Allez”

Best Blues – The Bayou Brothers

Best Blues Album – Low Volts / “Oh My Stars”

Best Americana – Sara Petite

Best Americana Album – The Tree Ring / “Brushbroom”

Best Hip Hop – The Lyrical Groove

Best Hip Hop Album – Odessa Kane / “Cuetes & Ballsongs”

Best Pop – The Silent Comedy

Best Pop Album – Old Tiger / “Love Have Mercy”

Best Rock – Blackout Party

Best Rock Album – Dirty Sirens / “Dirty Sirens”

Best Hard Rock – Schitzophonics

Best Hard Rock Album – Author & Punisher / “Women And Children”

Best Club – DJ Marc Thrasher

Best World Music – Tribal Seeds

Best World Music Album – Tribal Theory / “Hell of a Night”

Best Local Recording – The Midnight Pine / “Awake Awake Now”

Best Cover or Tribute Band – Cash'd Out

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