The Blues Music Awards honor those professional artists and recordings that stand out within the eligibility period, which runs from November 1 through October 31 of each year. In addition to the awards for the past year's top recordings, additional categories honor individual, actively touring artists for their overall excellence and accomplishment in that year.The Submission Process There are three components to the submission process. You should do step one when the CD is released. You should do step 2 as early as possible. It is up to you to decide whether to participate in the third option, but if you do, send it in as early as you can. 1. Be sure to send one copy of your release to The Blues Foundation, 421 South Main, Memphis, TN 38103-4464. The earlier you do this the better. What does this accomplish? It informs The Blues Foundation staff that your CD or DVD has been released and allows them to listen to or watch it. It is a good thing for us to be in the know about your release. 2. If you are a record label or blues musician who released a CD or DVD during the period November 1, 2011 to October 31, 2012, go to http://www.blues.org/labels/ to submit your release for consideration by the nominators. Your CD or DVD is eligible by the fact of its release, but it sure doesn't hurt to add it to this list for the convenience of the nominators. The resulting list is made available to the 100-125 (anonymous to the public) nominators for Round 1 of the nomination process to help the nominators remember the eligible releases. 3. If you wish to guarantee that your release--CD or DVD--gets into the hands of the anonymous nominators, check out the process here. Read the details at the link above, but this involves the expense of actually shipping your CD or DVD. This is optional and separate from the steps above. You can complete this step now, but no CDs will be shipped to nominators until June. Having said that, generally, the earlier the nominators receive your music, the more opportunities they will have to listen to it. The later they receive it the fewer opportunities they will have. They have day jobs too!! The Nomination Process The nominators are carefully-screened Blues experts, consisting of Blues radio programmers, print media representatives, retailers, educators, photographers, festival presenters, talent buyers, and other Blues aficionados who attend many live performances and actively listen to the majority of Blues recordings issued in any given year. The nominators are chosen from the Blues Foundation's membership, with a focus on geographical balance and extent of involvement within the Blues genre. Most are from the United States, but we currently also have nominators from Canada, Europe and Central America. Beginning around November 1, Round 1 nominators are asked to make up to three selections in each of The Blues Music Awards 26 categories. Nominators may make selections in every category or only in those categories about which they feel most informed and knowledgeable. After Round 1 is completed, the Nomination Committee reviews the entries to ensure that nominations are in the correct category and indeed meet the eligibility requirements. Generally, artists, songs, and albums receiving three or more nominations are submitted for Round 2 consideration. To avoid potential conflicts, those with a vested interest in any song or artist are excluded from further involvement in the nomination process. Each Round 2 nominator is again asked to select up to three of the remaining releases or artists in each category. At the conclusion of Round 2, the entries are again reviewed for category accuracy and eligibility and the top five nominees per category are placed on the final ballot. In the case of a tie, more than five nominees may be on the ballot. The final ballot is made available online in mid-December and the voting by The Blues Foundation membership begins then and generally continues to March 1. Make sure the fans of your music are members so they can vote. We encourage artists, label representatives, managers, or anyone else wishing to be involved in The Blues Music Awards process, or any other important function concerning the Blues or the "business of Blues," to first get to know The Blues Foundation. Frequent this website and become a member of The Blues Foundation to keep up to date on the submission procedures, deadlines, etc. for The Blues Music Awards and other important events.