Peavey Awards Honor R&B Star Brandy, Soul Legend Mavis Staples & More
Annual gala celebrates the musical heritage of the 'Birthplace of America's Music'
JACKSON, Miss. — GRAMMY winners Brandy, Mavis Staples and Paul Overstreet joined Peavey Electronics in celebrating the 'Birthplace of America's Music' at the star-studded Peavey Awards gala, hosted by Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour and endorsed by The Recording Academy on May 29 in Jackson, Miss.
'Mississippi has been our home base for our entire 43-year history,' said Hartley Peavey, namesake of the Peavey Award and founder of Meridian, Miss.-based Peavey Electronics, one of the music-products industry's leading innovators and largest manufacturers. 'It's also the state that gave the world blues and rock roll, and has produced more GRAMMY winners and nominees per capita than any other. It's an honor for Peavey Electronics to be part of that rich musical legacy.'
The second annual Peavey Awards, which honors the state's many GRAMMY winners and nominees, as well as individuals who have played a significant role in developing and furthering Mississippi's musical heritage, celebrated the achievements of R&B star Brandy, soul legend Mavis Staples, country songwriter Paul Overstreet and blues guitarist Eddie Cotton. Emcee, actress and Mississippi transplant Joey Lauren Adams—star of hit movies Big Daddy, Dazed and Confused and Chasing Amy—also received the prestigious award.
Following the Peavey Awards reception, the winners performed for a capacity crowd. Brandy drew from her 25 million-selling catalog of hits, while Mavis Staples wowed the audience with a spiritual set centering around 'Will the Circle Be Unbroken.' Paul Overstreet entertained with hits he wrote for Randy Travis, Travis Tritt and Kenny Chesney.
Two previous Peavey Award winners, gospel greats The Williams Brothers and Elvis Presley guitarist James Burton, joined forces at the 2008 celebration to honor the King of Rock Roll with a medley of hits, while Jackson native Eddie Cotton paid tribute to B.B. King with licks from his Peavey HP Signature guitar—a worthy replacement for his beloved original Peavey T-60 model, the first guitar ever produced using the CNC techniques that revolutionized the guitar industry.
The Peavey Awards debuted in 2007 and honored the accomplishments of Jerry Lee Lewis, The Williams Brothers, Marty Stuart, The North Mississippi Allstars and James Burton. Proceeds from the annual event benefit the Mississippi Blues Commission, whose Blues Trail project places interpretive markers at notable historical sites related to the history and growth of blues music throughout the state.