AYM Award winner nominated at the UK Blues Awards 2024!

We’re thrilled to share that blues guitarist and AYM Award winner Rhys (15) has been nominated for the Jules Fothergill Young Blues Artist of the Year at this year’s UK Blues Awards! Sponsored by Terry Marshall, co-founder of Marshall Amplification, this award is in recognition of artists under the age of 25 who have made a significant impact through their performance or recording in the Blues genre.

On the nomination Rhys says:

“It was a huge surprise to me to be included as a nominee! My first reaction was.. I haven’t done enough to be considered yet! I am so grateful and honoured to be included alongside some amazing musicians. And it’s so great to see so many of my friends nominated, across all the categories too! “

Rhys has already got off to a flying start to 2024. In January he was invited to Chicago to visit Buddy Guy’s Legends Blues club. The Blues icon, who still owns the club, makes regular appearances, performing a month of shows each January. Not only did Rhys receive VIP seats to watch the legend perform live, he was called up to play with the band during the last song! Click here to watch.

“I’ve dreamt of visiting for a long time. The memorabilia on the walls, the blues and white checkered floor, the rows of Grammy’s and awards all with the name Buddy Guy. The list of musicians who have performed on that familiar stage is incredible. To be allowed to share the stage alongside Buddy, his incredible band, some of his family and some of my friends is something I will remember and treasure forever. I am the luckiest person. Life is an unpredictable, unbelievable and magical thing.”

Supported by AYM for two years, Rhys and his mother Ali had previously told us about the positive impact music has had on his life. Through the Awards programme Rhys has received financial support and participated in several musical opportunities including workshops with professional musicians and live performances. Where he had previously struggled in live music environments he now thrives!

“I never imagined I would be happy to play my guitar for an audience. I thought that recording music would be the most important thing for me to work towards but the opportunity to play live, work with other musicians and learn from experienced guitarists in my favourite style of music has become the most important thing to me. My Award last year helped me so much and was a big boost to my confidence.”

You can find out more about Rhys and his musical journey by clicking here.

Voting in the 2024 UK Blues Awards is now open to the public. If you’d like to support Rhys you can do by clicking here. Voting will close on 25th February and the winners will be announced at an exclusive Awards night on 25th April at The Stables, Milton Keynes. Good luck Rhys!

With support from our donors we’re here to help hundreds of young musicians like Rhys. Thank you! If you are, or if you know, a young musician like Rhys, aged 5-17, with bags of musical potential who needs support for musical costs, AYM could help!

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