The winners of the RAMI Awards will be chosen by the combined votes of eligible members of the RAMI membership.
RAMI will present one trophy to the winning band/performer. It will be the responsibility of the other members of a winning band to purchase a trophy, if they wish.
Nominees are not required to be members of the RAMI membership.
1. The artist must have worked a minimum of eight (8) public performances during the eligibility period within a fifty (50) mile radius of the center of Rockford (intersection of State St. and Main St.).
2. To be eligible all artists, technicians and recording studios must legally reside within the 50-mile radius (same as above) or in the case of performance groups have half or more of its members meeting the residency requirement.
3. To be considered for an original music category, the artist’s live performances must contain at least fifty (50) percent original material.
4. Requests by artists to have their names removed from the ballot will be honored.
Nomination categories listed generally reflect what awards were given out the previous year. These may be changed to more accurately reflect the evolution of the local music scene.
Categories may be renamed, consolidated or eliminated from year to year.
A category requires at least three nominees to be included on the ballot. If this requirement is not met, every effort will be made to place remaining submissions in another category.
Previous lists of categories may be viewed via the yearly winners listing on ramiawards.com.
Round One: RAMI members may submit nominations for up to three musicians / groups / technicians for each awards category. Nominated bands/individuals must meet the nominations criteria.
A list of all nominees will be compiled from the submitted nominations and presented to the RAMI membership for selection to be included on the RAMI Awards ballot.
Round Two: RAMI members will choose up to five nominees from Step One for each category to be included on the ballot. A maximum of five nominees will be placed in each category on the ballot. The submitted choices will be tallied and the top five choices will be included on the ballot in each category. If there is a tie for the fifth position on the ballot, the nominations committee may expand the number of nominees on the ballot to include all the nominees that tied for that position.
For a category to be included on the ballot there must be at least three nominees in the category. The nominations committee will review the selection results and may move nominees to other categories to fill out categories with less than five nominees.
The nominations committee will contact the nominees in each category to request a bio, photo and song clip for inclusion on the RAMI nominations page.
The RAMI membership will vote on the ballot to choose the winners for the RAMI Awards.
A group or individual may only appear in one category in a given year with the following exceptions. An individual may be nominated in one of the music categories and in one of the categories below:
Male Vocalist categories
Female Vocalist categories
Music Teacher categories
DJ category - Candidate must perform either solo or as part of a group by incorporating his or her original mixes, samples, loops, beats and scratches.
An individual may only be nominated in one of the technician categories in a given year. Nominees must submit details of their qualifications to be included in a technician category; i.e what have they done in the past year.
Live Sound Engineer
Studio Sound Engineer
The following award recipients will be determined by the RAMI Critic’s Choice Nomination Committee. Members of this committee who are being considered for any of these awards will abstain from participating in the selection process.
Anyone may submit a nomination for these awards however, the recording awards (Song, Composer and Album of the Year) must be accompanied by a completed nomination form and two (2) digital copies of the project. Nominations for the other awards in this section (Outstanding Achievement, Lifetime Achievement, Community Service/Outreach and In Memoriam) must include a concise summary of the nominee's qualifications for the award.
Hall of Fame
Artist receiving five (5) RAMI Awards in a category will be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Critic’s Choice Awards do not count towards Hall of Fame induction.
People’s Choice Awards do not qualify for the Hall of Fame.
Song of the Year
This award is presented to an artist (solo, duo or group) for an original song or musical composition that was released during the eligibility year. The artist should designate two (2) tracks from album-length CD or EP submissions for consideration in this category. Single track recordings may also be nominated.
Album of the Year
This award is for album-length recording projects released during the eligibility year. Album-length shall be defined as a project containing no less than six (6) tracks or thirty-six minutes of material. Album will be judged as a complete package, on all aspects including quality of performance, composition/arrangement, production, and design.
Composer of the Year
This award recipient is chosen based on song/music composition abilities as exhibited in a body of work released in a given eligibility year. This typically (though not exclusively) will be for an album-length CD release.
This award is given to an active member (unless prevented by ill health) of the RAMI Community who has dedicated a substantial portion of his/her life towards the enhancement of the local music scene. Recipients need not be RAMI members; but must currently live in the Rockford Area (within 50-mile radius of State and Main) and have a minimum of twenty years total residence and performance in said area. Nominees will be evaluated not only on their excellence or achievement within their own field but also for showing leadership within the community to promote broader access to, participation in and understanding of music and the arts.
No more than two (2) Lifetime Achievement Awards will be presented for any eligibility year.
Candidate (individual or organization) must be based and actively promoting or performing live music within the designated RAMI area. Recipients will have shown an on-going dedication towards creating a positive impact on the local community through music education, media presentation or entertainment. Particular consideration will be given to those who have directed their efforts to engage those members of our community who are for physical or economic reasons less able to fully participate in Rockford's rich, music scene.
The following two (2) awards are adjunct divisions of the Hall of Fame. Recipients are considered to be full-fledged members of the RAMI Hall of Fame.
Candidate must have spent a portion of his/her/their life within the designated RAMI area. Individuals or groups shall have achieved a national or international level of recognition in some facet of the music field, or have served the community in such a manner as to bring positive, national or international exposure to the local music community.
This award is presented to artists who have passed away during the previous year.
Anyone may nominate for these categories.
All donations help support RAMI scholarships, music education programs, and RAMI sponsored events.