The Music Awards of Staffordshire and Cheshire- Part One

Bethan Shuff || January 16th

The Music Awards of Staffordshire and Cheshire (MASCs) are less than a month away, on the 11th February at King’s Hall, Stoke.

The mastermind behind the event is Lee Barber, who said “The Music Awards of Staffordshire and Cheshire aim to bring the whole music scene of the area together to celebrate and show support of each other. In doing this many artists were able to find new music and new friends from their very own hometown.”

There are four more awards than last year, so a total of 13 awards up for grabs, with titles like Best Solo Act and Best Album there for the taking.

In the run up to Christmas, Lee announced the nominees for each award. One or two announcements each day had us all on the edge of our seats waiting to see which local acts had been chosen. 

I spoke to some of the nominees about how they were feeling about their nominations, and here were some of the responses.

RINSE at the 2016 Awards

RINSE at the 2016 Awards

After a busy year of festivals and supporting some pretty big names like Jaws and DMA’s, RINSE are up for Best Act and Best Single for With You, the band are ‘absolutely buzzing considering with You had only been out a week’ and tease with the hint that there could be some new music emerging from them this year too.

‘One minute you're sat with a guitar, tears streaming down your face, writing something special and private and secret, and the next thing you know, it's up for an award. I'm really happy that people like it. It means a lot to me’, is what Ash Lad shared with us about his nomination for his single Riddles.

Indigo have also been nominated for Best Single with Devil’s Treasure and said ‘The awards are a great platform to promote and showcase local music and we're extremely proud to be nominated alongside some great local talent as well as some of our good friends. Really looking forward to it.’

Time On The Line has been one of those songs that encapsulates what we are about, and it’s amazing to know that something we created in our bedrooms has resonated with people enough to want to nominate it for an award’, says JNCTRE. They added, ‘Anything that’s recognising under the radar music in any area is incredible as it can sometimes be a lonely slog. For JNCTRE to even be nominated in the same category as some incredible and well established bands is mind-blowing. This first year for JNCTRE has been amazing, and we have been overwhelmed with the support we have been given.’

Heady Redwood Days was one of six singles released by Nixon Tate and The Honey Club in 2016, so it’s no surprise that one of them bagged the band a nomination for Best Single. Tate said, ‘It’s amazing to get a nomination for this award, we've had a busy year and have put out a load of singles so it’s great to get this kind of recognition! There's some really great singles on the list and it shows the strength of acts around at the moment!’

Black Coast are another band up for Best Single, with Lawless, but also up for Best Metal Act: ‘We are totally over the moon. We've had an absolute brilliant year with tours, endorsements and being signed up to a management this could be the cream on the cake.’

You can still vote for your favourites and purchase tickets for the evening at

Voting closes on the 25th January.