Shirley Manson of Garbage accepting the She Rocks Powerhouse award.
Shirley Manson of Garbage accepting the She Rocks Powerhouse award.

The She Rocks Awards at NAMM Honored Badass Women in Music

"By not disappearing, but by thriving, that's how you have the last word," Shirley Manson, lead singer from Garbage, said during her acceptance speech for the Powerhouse Award Friday night at the 5th annual She Rocks awards Friday night at the Hilton Anaheim Hotel during the NAMM Show.

The message felt especially poignant at the She Rocks Awards which honors female role models in the music industry during the boy's club that is the NAMM Show. And what better night to celebrate these musical chingonas than on the eve of the worldwide Women's March?

The event kicked off with local talent Brandy Robinson, winner of the #SaveAGuitar contest sponsored by Breedlove. Her smoky, lush vocals and guitar stylings warmed the crowd up for rock filled evening, girl's style.

The fun moved into high gear with a raucous, crowd-stomping performance by Jenna Paone, She Rocks founder Laura B. Whitmore and the killer house band, Rock Sugah, titled “I Like It Loud”! The original song by Paone and Whitmore, with guitar solos by Gretchen Menn and Nita Strauss, was a stirring declaration that girls can rock just as loud and proud as anyone on the planet.

Following that good-spirited, musical manifesto of feminine strength, were a series of soul-lifting speeches by a roster of She Rocks Awards honorees, introduced by noted presenters speaking from the heart and inspiring all in attendance. Here’s a rundown:

  • Tracy Leenman, owner of Musical Innovations music retailer, Enterprise Award, presented by Rand & Cindy Cook

  • Dani Markman, Director, A&R, Disney Music Group, Vision Award, presented by Christine Devine and Radio Disney DJ Lela Brown

  • Charyn Harris, conductor of music programs at A Place Called Home, Motivator Award, presented by Asya Shein

  • Beverly Fowler, director of artist relations and events at PRS Guitars, Spirit Award, presented by guitarist Kat Dyson

  • Leanne Summers, president/CEO of LAWIM (Los Angeles Women in Music), Achiever Award, presented by Gayl Murphy

  • Shirley Manson, lead singer from multi-award winning band, Garbage, Powerhouse Award, presented by journalist Brad Tolinski

  • Karrie Keyes, founder of Soundgirls and sound engineer for Pearl Jam, Mad Skills Award, presented by Heather Rafter

  • Monique Boyer, director, global artist relations/PRO membership at M.A.C. Cosmetics, Champion Award, presented by Samantha Maloney, drummer and Vice President of A&R for Warner Bros. Records

  • Esperanza Spalding, Grammy® Award-winning bass player, singer/songwriter, Inspire Award, presented by bassist Divinity Roxx

  • Rebecca Eaddy, marketing communications manager for Roland Corporation U.S., Enterprise Award, presented by Guitar Player Magazine editor, Michael Molenda

  • Lisa Foxx, radio personality at My FM on the iHeartRadio network, Dreaming Out Loud Award, presented by Lisa Loeb

  • Ronnie Spector, iconic artist, Legend Award, presented by the John Lennon Educational Tour Bus

  • Sarah Command, singer/songwriter and half of The Command Sisters, Next Generation Awards, presented by She Rocks founder Laura B. Whitmore

  • Lita Ford, legendary rock guitarist, vocalist and songwriter, Icon Award, presented by Nick Bowcott of Marshall Amplification

    Divinity Roxx rockin' out
    Divinity Roxx rockin' out

The She Rocks Awards also served as the release party for She Rocks Vol. 1 a compilation CD of eleven female guitarists released on Steve Vai’s Favored Nations Entertainment label. Vai was there to introduce the project and kick off the first performance from the album; Kat Dyson and her song “U Know What I Like.”

Two Co-Hosts for the event, FOX KTTV anchor Christine Devine (remember those adorable Wednesday Child segments? That was hosted by Devine.) and Daisy Rock Girl Guitars CEO Tish Ciravolo, helped Whitmore with introductions and a well-rounded program that included performances by Kat Dyson, Victoria Renee, all-female tribute band Lez Zeppelin, Yasi Hofer, ingénue sibling guitarists The Command Sisters and the house band led by Divinity Roxx. The highlight of the evening was the booming finale, featuring the great Lita Ford performing her hit “Kiss Me Deadly” backed by seven other female guitarists from She Rocks Vol. 1.

The event is produced by the Women’s International Music Network, an organization whose mission is to advocate for women in the music industry and to shine a spotlight on female role models.

In addition, there is an accompanying silent auction live through January 31, 2017, which features guitars, music, audio gear, jewelry, spa products and much more. Anyone can bid here. Proceeds help benefit, an organization that helps train girls for careers in audio. Keep rockin' on ladies!

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