Unlike many of you, I consider myself somewhat a newbie in the Carolina Beach Music and Shag Dance scene. I moved to the beach in 2001 and began my education in this fascinating culture. I've always enjoyed the Rhythm & Blues and Soul sounds of decades past, but in the area I lived for most of my life, we didn't hear a lot about "Beach Music", nor were the R&B, and Soul tunes (now considered Beach Music) ever described as Beach Music.
I think because of this experience, I look at this culture from a somewhat different perspective than those born into it. I am fascinated by the stories related to the history of the music. I love hearing the legendary performers tell how the popularity of Beach Music affected their music and consequently their lives. And when I look at the progression of the music and the dance, I think there is one particular development that historically may prove to be the most important. The development to which I am referring was the creation of the Carolina Beach Music Awards and the Cammy.
The creation of the Carolina Beach Music Awards (CBMA) brought badly needed recognition to the music and the artists who performed it at a time when it was most needed. In a recent interview with Billy Scott, we discussed his vision for the Cammy at the time of its conception and how he and Curtiss Carpenter set out to make it a reality. The twists and turns and challenges of how the organization grew and ended up at the beach are very interesting. Of course you'll have to listen to "part 1" of that interview when it airs here on Shag City Radio this Wednesday, October 5, 2011. If you miss it...or perhaps you are reading this article after the fact, you will find the archived interview here. Billy Scott has agreed to "part 2" and I can't wait to wade into more of his fabulous career.
When one considers the incredible talent represented by the performers of Carolina Beach Music and the appropriate annual recognition they receive at the awards ceremony, it makes involvement in the CBMA a serious matter. Those who are not members should be. Those who are members should exercise their rights to vote. The more active members this organization has, the more meaningful its impact. So, folks,join the CBMA! If you are a member, when you receive your ballot....vote! It is our responsibility as fans of this music to take part and support this organization.