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Posted by: thepinetree on 01/25/2022 06:00 PM Updated by: thepinetree on 01/25/2022 06:58 PM
Expires: 01/01/2027 12:00 AM

The 2nd Annual CAMMIES Awards Honored 51 on January 15th

Copperopolis, CA...The 2nd Annual Calaveras Arts and Music Awards was held on Saturday evening, January 15, 2022 at the expansive Copperopolis Armory. With a mindful-to-Covid-19 audience of 180 in attendance and another 250 to 300 watching the livestream at any given time during three hour ceremony, the award show honored 51 of the Mother Lode regions musicians, singers/songwriters, bands, events, festivals, venues and other professionals from the regions entertainment industry.

The CAMMIES Awards was co-produced by now Copperopolis resident and former Bay Area music industry executive Richard Varrasso of Creative Copperopolis and Nolan Apostle or Mr. Varrasso, over his storied four decade music industry career, managed legendary rock musicians Ronnie Montrose and Greg Kihn and worked with other iconic recording artists such as Sammy Hagar, Journey, Santana, and Jefferson Starship. Mr. Apostle’s Valley Springs-based is a multifaceted live music, conference and food event production and management company serving Northern California.

The Calaveras Arts and Music Awards has become a popular, and also revealing, event that promotes the cornucopia of remarkable and prolific talent that exists in the tri-county region of the Mother Lode of Amador, Calaveras and Tuolumne counties the event primarily addresses.

According to Mr. Varrasso, “After two years of pandemic that has really hurt everyone on a global scale, especially the regional arts, music and entertainment, by making the decision to move forward with the Calaveras Arts and Music Awards, we really wanted to pay it forward and boost the morale of the community by acknowledging all of your artistic contributions to our communities.”

Continuing, Mr. Apostle states, “We believe the recognition of these awards will improve and elevate the profiles and increase the awareness of the best talent out there so that it may be an asset to them booking more lucrative and high profile gigs post-pandemic.”

Of the 51 awards presented, a few highlights are:

Patrick Karnahan, leader and guitarist and accordionist with the Black Irish Band,, who have been together for 32 years performing, have 700 live musical performances to date under their belts, have released 25+ record albums and are looking forward to a forthcoming tour of Ireland. Patrick took home three awards, one for the Black Irish Band, and two additional awards for Event Production for his 36th Annual Calaveras Celtic Faire, returning to the Angels Camp Fair Grounds, March 11-13, 2022 and his All Hallows Halloween Faire,, also at the Angels Camp Fair Grounds, over Halloween Weekend.

Grover Anderson of Murphys, who has pumped out six albums since 2011. The producers are especially fond of his single, "Frontman," which should really be Calaveras County's theme song for the  incredible music scene.

Star Dogs, who for the past two year have emerged as the region's power-trio “Supergroup,” consisting of lifelong professional touring musicians who have performed with Montrose, Geoff Tate (former lead singer of Queensryche, Tommy TuTone and others.

Nate Nathan, who has produced six albums and toured China:

Leilani Hollywood and her band, Leilani and the Distractions, who is a mainstay at every performance venue from clubs to massive casio exhibition halls:

Music Venues and events:

Murphys Irish Pub in Murphys:

Brice Station Vineyards in Murphys:

Stevenot Winery in Vallecito:

The new private invitation-only “Music Barn at Val du Vino” venue.

Richard Varrasso concludes, “We wish we could have had a longer lead time to plan more efficiently and effectively, so we could have pulled off a grander show to honor even more talent than we had planned on. The feedback from those attended has been tremendous. And we especially want to thank the all-volunteer crew who came together to execute the Calaveras Arts and Music Awards, which consisted of approximately 12 individuals who contributed all event production services from sound, lights, video, web streaming technologies, catering, publicity and digital marketing.

The complete list of Calaveras Arts and Music Awards recipients follows:

The Neighborhood Sound: rock ‘n’ roll.

Tim McCaffrey, Skeeze Nava & Josh Certo

Toltec: hip-hop. Austin Frederick.

The Automatics: blues, jump blues, rockabilly, outlaw country, country.

Joe Rose, David Brown, Mark Nordeen, Craig Rogers.

Kinland Station:  best new Rockin Blues (rock and blues)

Lisa Askew, Chris VanHoven, Steve Duych

Hired Gunn

Tim McCaffery

Grover Anderson and the Lampoliers

Dive Bar Poets

Richie Barron

Ras Beeken Dan


Ron Enos producer

Gary Souza

Chasing Anthems

Nick Tyrrel

Keith Burrows

Clan Dyken


Neil Buettner

Nathan Ignacio

Nate Nathan

Graham Richards, Pianist, and Laura Marion

Christopher Buttner and Teresa Rodriguez, producers of the

Blonde Tells

STARDOGS - Brian Jirka - keys, Vocals, Bass, Rick - Drummer and Vocals, and Scott Moughton

Ron Schaner

Darrel Louis - The Music Barn at Val du Vino

Jill Warren

Sierra Rep Theater

All Hallows Faire producers -

Murphys Hideout - Comedy Night

Murphys Creek Theater -

Brice Station

Alan Drown

The Murphys Irish Pub: Anthony and Jessica Delaney, Owners

Anthony Delaney, bassist and bandleader - The Murphys Jazz Allstars

Greg Sutton -

Nicholas Lefler

Stevenot Winery, Vallecito

The Poison Oakies

The Kool Shifters

David Atencio

Brad Hoshaw

Ann Mazzaferro in Blithe Spirit, Metropolitan Players

Darcel Hunter - Darcel and Company

Richard Segovia

Black Irish Band

RTV Amador - "The Kam & Chuck Show", Chuck Boro - HOST, Kam Merzlak - HOST, & Kimberly Medford - EDITING & ENGINEERING.

FROM RV- these are the ones I know in GREEN

Tony Taylor

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The comments are owned by the poster. We are not responsible for its content. We value free speech but remember this is a public forum and we hope that people would use common sense and decency. If you see an offensive comment please email us at
No Subject
Posted on: 2022-01-25 19:07:30   By: Anonymous

Fuk Donald Trump and his brainwashed racist, hate filled, heartless, cruel, ignorant, inbred trolls of the GOP!!

President Biden is the best President in history!! Four More Years of Biden!! Build Back Better!! Let’s Go Joe!

[Reply ]

No Subject
Posted on: 2022-01-25 20:02:55   By: Anonymous
Can't these folks even put on a decent shirt for an awards event? Or is that somehow un-artistic?

[Reply ]

    Posted on: 2022-01-26 05:16:03   By: Anonymous
    Actually, it's very artistic. Just something you don't understand.

    [Reply ]

      Re: Liberalism is a Mental Disorder
      Posted on: 2022-01-26 08:18:10   By: Anonymous
      Want to thank everyone for wanting to get back to "normal". Also want to thank the angry Trump hater for his never-ending copy & paste no matter what the subject matter. I will work harder to support the artists in our county.

      [Reply ]

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