OC Music Awards – City National Grove of Anaheim – March 8, 2014

The OCMA Awards Show
City National Grove of Anaheim

If you've followed our coverage of the Orange County Music Awards shows in the past, you know we're always on the lookout for the evenings' gaffs, flubs and general awkwardness. Saturday's show, hosted by KROQ personality Stryker, didn't disappoint on these fronts, but it was the nature of one flub in particular that ironically made for the night's most inspirational moment.

During lifetime achievement winner Kid Ramos's performance, his guitar amplifier went silent mid solo. The legendary bluesman, who during his acceptance speech had chronicled his recent battle with cancer, set about fixing the amp while his drummer kept the beat going. Stagehands emerged from the audience to help, but after a few minutes of drum solo, the situation seemed hopeless. A handful of pretty ladies, dressed in evening gowns took to the stage and began twirling to the beat in support when suddenly the amp roared to life and Kid Ramos finished the set with a rousing crescendo.

A fitting metaphor, the adversity he overcame during the performance only served to add flavor to the show–as did the evening's other gaffs, flubs and general weirdness–but some of these in less inspirational ways. Most notable among these was the Bud Light rep who handed out an award after Ramos's performance. “We've all been touched by cancer,” he said wistfully before asking the crowd to raise their glasses in a 'Bud Light toast,” to the OC Music Awards. Luckily for those who had any doubts about what was in his cup, the rep was conscientious enough to keep the Bud light label facing the cameras in the room.


There was more fun early on in the ceremony with the show's first award presenter, KROQ personality Beer Mug–who is the object of frequent ridicule by colleagues Kevin and Bean for his piss poor interview skills. Saturday night ol' Beer Mug stammered through an acknowledgment to the organizers “who help make the OCMAs run so smoothly,” before the nominees for best folk band were announced. The winners–the Ultimate Bearhug–didn't even have a chance to get to the stage to claim their trophy before the music for the next award began playing. The band's singer, Doll Knight, emerged from the crowd, approached the mic and began speaking over the music. “I don't want to be that guy, but we're the Ultimate Bearhug,” she said slightly miffed. A contrite Beer Mug suddenly jumped onstage. “That was my bad,” he announced to the audience of hundreds. “I didn't know they were here tonight.”

If there were an award for most heartfelt award presentation read from his smartphone, it would have to go to Ska Parade founder Tazy Phillips who announced the award for best world band. Talking about the Jamaican rhythms and the joy ska music has brought him throughout the decades, Phillips barely lifted his head from his phone, which apparently was where his speech was stored. For what it's worth, he didn't fumble a single word.

The award for best surf band got a few chuckles from the audience when members of the Originalites, a band known for their reggae-punk style, took the trophy.

“It's really cool that bands can be recognized for the fact that they surf,” one member announced. “Regardless of what type of music they play.”

But the stars shone brightest, if not a little awkwardly when '90s punk favorites, the Offspring, accepted this year's impact award, which was presented by Tom Dumont and Adrian Young of No Doubt. As Offspring waited in the stage wing to claim their award, Young looked off stage toward the Offspring, where the rest of the audience had a limited sight line. Suddenly Young proclaimed, “you guys weren't supposed to get put on KROQ.” Doubtless the guys from Offspring laughed at this obvious joke, but it was hard to say for sure–they weren't mic'ed at that point. All the rest of the room heard was crickets. From there, the lengthy introduction offered by Dumont and Young devolved into bizarre commentary on large tour buses and high-volume ejaculations.

But where the awards part of the show amused with flubbery and weirdness, the live performances from the likes of Big Sandy and His Fly-Rite Boys, and Breach the Summit were spirited and well received. The highlight of the evening's performances, (in this Feral blogger's opinion), came from Kiev, whose sax-inflected psychedelic grooves were played tight, but swung with a touch of loose-wound grace. Fittingly, the band's album Falling Bough Wisdom Teeth, took the award for the year's top album.

For those who couldn't be there or catch the webcast, enjoy a list of all the evening's winners. Awards were presented to Kiev, Blok, Jeramiah Red, Mt. Ossa, the Originalites and other OC artists in 26 different categories.Congratulations to everyone who took home a trophy or just put their hearts and soul into this thing. We'll see you next year.

Full list of OCMA award winners after the jump

Best Folk
The Ultimate Bear Hug

Best Surf
The Originalites

Best Youth Artist
Un D Vided

Best Alternative
The Offspring

Best Country Americana
Big Sandy and His Fly Rite Boys

Best Blues
Jeramiah Red

Lifetime Achievement Award
Kid Ramos

Best Hip Hop
Speech Impediments

Best Rock
Jeramiah Red

Best Live Band
Well Hung Heart

Best Latin
Boogaloo Assassins

Best Pop
Suburban Legends

Best Club DJ
Daniel Mihai

Best Indie
The Devious Means

Best Metal
Avenged Sevenfold

Best Jazz
Tony Guerrero

Best New Artist
Mt. Ossa

People's Choice
Undecided Future

Best Music Video
Well Hung Heart – “Bullshit”

Best Music Producer
Jon O'Brien

Song of the Year
The Colourist – “Little Games”

Album of the Year

Kiev – Falling Bough Wisdom Teeth

See also:
The 50 Best Things About OC's Music Scene
The 50 Worst Things About the OC Music Scene
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