Margo Price is finally getting some much-deserved recognition for her breakout 2016 album Midwest Farmer’s Daughter, which yesterday won the American Music Prize (or “AMP”) recognizing it as the best debut album of 2016. The AMP, not to be confused with the “Australian Music Prize,” which Courtney Barnett won last year, is somewhat unique in its transparency: it represents the joint opinion of a 16-member jury of critics, freelance journalists, producers and recording artists that includes a New York Times critic, the proprietor of Austin, Texas, record store The End of an Ear, and singer-songwriter Matt Nathanson. The AMP is unique in its lack of preference between genres: Last year, Kamasi Washington’s jazz album The Epic took home the inaugural prize, and other nominees for this year’s prize stretched from R&B to electronic music to indie rock.
Price, upon receiving the award (good for $25,000) from critic Craig Shelburne, commented:
Even as a writer, sometimes my words escape me … So to paraphrase Chuck Prophet, “Sometimes it’s hard to tell if you’re the dreamer or the dream.” I could have easily slipped though the cracks of the twenty-first century. I’m beyond thankful my music has touched so many people.
Read Paste’s Best of What’s Next feature on Price here, listen to Paste Cloud audio from her Daytrotter session below, and beneath that, find all the nominees she beat out for the 2016 American Music Prize.
2016 American Music Prize Nominees
Big Thief – Masterpiece
Bob Moses – Days Gone By
case/lang/veirs – case/lang/veirs
EL VY – Return To The Moon
Empress Of – Me
Fantastic Negrito – The Last Days of Oakland
Gallant – Ology
Julien Baker – Sprained Ankle
Margaret Glaspy – Emotions and Math
Margo Price – Midwest Farmer’s Daughter
Son Little – Son Little
Whitney – Light Upon the Lake