Attendees for the 2008 Blues Music Awards

The Blues Foundation's Blues Music Awards just keep getting bigger and better. More than 65 of the 2008 Blues Music Awards nominees have already confirmed their attendance for the 29th edition of the biggest night in Blues music. The Awards will be presented at the Grand Casino Event Center in Tunica Resorts, Mississippi on Thursday May 8.

The following nominees have confirmed their attendance: Ann Rabson; Bettye LaVette; Big George Brock; Big James Montgomery; Bob Corritore & Dave Riley; Bob Margolin; Bob Stroger; Bobby Rush; Bruce Katz; Bryan Lee; Calvin "Fuzz" Jones; Darrell Nulisch; David Maxwell; Deanna Bogart; Debbie Davies; Denise LaSalle; Diunna Greenleaf & Blue Mercy; Doug James; Doug MacLeod; Duke Robillard; Eugene "Hideaway" Bridges; Fiona Boyes; Fruteland Jackson; Gina Sicilia; Henry Butler; Hubert Sumlin; Jackie Payne; James "Blood" Ulmer; Janiva Magness; Jeff Turmes; Jimi Bott; Jimmy "Duck" Holmes; Jimmie Vaughan; John Nemeth; Johnny Sansone; Kenny Wayne Shepherd; Kid Ramos; Kilborn Alley Blues Band; Kim Wilson; Koko Taylor; Lurrie Bell; Magic Slim & The Teardrops; Mannish Boys; Mary Flower; Mem Shannon; Nappy Brown; Nick Moss & the Flip Tops; Nora Jean Bruso; Omar Dykes; Phillip Walker; Robb Stupka; Root Doctor; Ruthie Foster; Sam Lay; Sharrie Williams; Steve Calif; Sugar Blue; Tad Robinson; Teresa James; The Holmes Brothers; The Insomniacs; The Soul of John Black; Tommy Castro and Watermelon Slim & the Workers.

Whew! And a few more nominees are likely to still be added to the list.

And most of these artists will be performing during the course of the show, many in the one-of-a-kind pairing for which these awards are so famous. The presentation of the 25 awards will be interspersed with an equal number of performances.

Also in Tunica, on the 8th, Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour will unveil the Highway 61 Blues Trail Marker at 3:00pm before Blues fans from around the world in the Delta to attend the Blues Music Awards.

The Blues Foundation will present the Blues Music Awards for the first time in their 29-year history in the Mississippi Delta, the birthplace of the Blues. In addition to the nominees, industry representatives and fans from around the globe will celebrate the best in Blues recording and performance from the previous year on May 8, 2008 at the Grand Casino Event Center, just down the road from Memphis, the Awards' home since their 1980 inception.

The Blues Music Awards are universally recognized as the highest honor given to Blues artists. The presenting sponsor will once again be The Gibson Foundation. In 2008, the State of Mississippi, the Tunica Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Grand Casino and Resort are also sponsoring the Blues Music Awards. The Blues Music Awards are also sponsored by BMI, Casey Family Programs, Eagle Rock Entertainment, FedEx, the Sierra Nevada Brewing Company and SonyBMG's Legacy Records.

The Blues Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and Charter Members' Dinner will be held the night before on Wednesday, May 7 at the Tunica RiverPark museum situated on the banks of the Mississippi River.

The Blues Music Awards are produced by The Blues Foundation, a non-profit organization established to preserve Blues history, celebrate Blues excellence, support Blues education and ensure the future of this uniquely American art form. The Foundation consists of a worldwide network of 165 affiliated Blues societies and has individual memberships spanning the globe. In addition to the Blues Music Awards, the Foundation also produces the Blues Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, the International Blues Challenge and the Keeping the Blues Alive Awards. It fosters education through its Blues in the Schools programming and supports the medical needs of Blues musicians with its HART Fund. Throughout the year, the Foundation staff serves the worldwide Blues community with answers, contact information and news.

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