Your TRMA Academy Members

Academy Member: John McDonald

Long before his move to Florida from the Mid-Atlantic, singer songwriter John McDonald was influenced by Bob Marley’s Jamaican reggae, Jimmy Buffett’s Caribbean rock and Paul Simon’s South African and Brazilian rhythms. Now based on the Atlantic Coast of Florida, John McDonald and his band the Mango Men perform their own distinct, high-energy brand of Trop…

Academy Member: Rudy Cox

Rudy Cox is an engaging singer/songwriter/musician based out of Cape Coral, Florida who’s live music entertainment performance charms his audience into becoming part of the show. You and your friends will quickly find yourself singing along with the crowd to a variety of popular favorites and Rudy singles. Rudy’s shows deliver a mix of Trop-rock,…

Academy Member: Jason Caraway

https://www.facebook.com/JasonCarawayMusic

Academy Member: Jake Tatar

https://www.facebook.com/jakeandjacksonduo   Jake & Jackson Jake Tatar is a founding member of the Boat Drunks and has been on the trop rock scene since 2001. After 14 years with the band, he retired from touring and playing full-time with the band to spend more time with his daughter, Leigha, and son, Jackson. During this hiatus,…

Academy Member: Alan Jax Bowers (Musician)

Alan Jax Bowers is a drummer/percussionist and producer and owner of Mudcut South Studios in Englewood Florida. Jax is currently performing live and doing studio work and production for clients all over the world. He has been playing since the age of 10 and has studied with some great players like the late Ralph MacDonald,…

Academy Member: Bryton Stoll

The Landlocked Sailor Some of my favorite memories are of sitting around a campfire on a beach in Kansas while my dad played the guitar and sang. The moonlight, the stars, and the fire all danced together on the water, while the rest of us danced on the sand. There was some country, a little…

Academy Member: Pup Morse

www.pupmorse.com   Music has always been my first passion.  From the time I was a small child singing along to tunes in the car or trying to impersonate Elvis in the shower, I always knew I wanted to sing.  Of course, sometimes life sends us on a little sidetrack before we get a chance to chase…

Academy Member: Del Suggs

www.saltwatermusic.com Del Suggs is a singer/songwriter and guitarist from the beaches of North Florida. He has appeared in concert at colleges, universities and festivals across the United States and the Caribbean. Del has appeared at over 700 colleges and universities across the US.  He’s also performed  at such prestigious venues as the World Music Festa (Shirahama, Japan), Kerrville…

Academy Member: Johnny Doo (Musician)

Johnny Doo is the bass player for Thom & Coley Shepherd, Donny Brewer & The Dock Rockers, as well as other Trop Rock artists.

Academy Member: Beth Travers

www.bethtravers.com   Beth Travers was born to adventurers and sailors—she was sailing Nantucket Sound before she could run— Her first instrument was a baritone ukelele …She immediately buried it in the sand and stole her mother’s guitar… As a kid on sailing trips, Beth listened to Harry Belafonte and steel drum bands from the West…

Academy Member: TJ Walsh

TJ Walsh, Dubbed Music Ambassador by the Tampa Bay Parrot Head Club, has been in the business of entertaining audiences for his entire life. Starting with a Regional Rock Band in the 60’s then to a 30 year career in broadcasting from morning show DJ to Stints on the Matlock TV Series and the final…

Academy Member: Joe Downing

www.joedowning.com https://www.facebook.com/joe.downing.56 Middletown, Ohio born and Nashville, Tennessee bred, Joe Downing is a Tropical Americana Recording Artist and Songwriter that knows how to Rock & Roll. Downing has released 3 EP’s over the last decade and has over 7 singles circulating on over a dozen Trop Rock radio stations. Joe plays all over the country:…

Academy Member: Fred Quistgard (Musician)

Freddy Quistgard is a percussionist in the “tropics of Maine”. A musical childhood filled with piano and guitar lessons took a back seat to a long professional ice hockey coaching career. He began his trop rock adventure as guest percussionist for Maine’s Corona Brothers Band in the early 2000s. Freddy then became an integral part…

Academy Member: Johnny Russler & The Beach Bum Band

Johnny Russler has been Trop-Rocking with the Beach Bum Band since 2001.  Along the way Johnny Russler & The Beach Bum Band have been throwing beach parties to enthusiastic crowds to venues from Nebraska to Rhode Island, from Minnesota to Key West, from community festivals to college campuses to Parrothead gatherings and even at Alpine…

Academy Member: Jeff Brewer

I grew up in Atlanta and played in bands since early high school. After doing the corporate ladder thing, marriage, and kids, I started playing solo again in the late 90’s.  When I was laid off from my job after 9/11, that kicked me in the butt a little and had a role in building…

Academy Member: Flip Flop Dave

Originally from the Tampa Bay Area, Dave grew up a 20-minute bicycle ride from St. Pete Beach.  Southern rock had an early influence, but the sound and style of Jimmy Buffett really spoke to him. Growing up in a musical household, Dave originally started singing for just for his own enjoyment but soon discovered that…

Academy Member: COPA Reefers

The COPA Reefers consists mainly of members of COPA (the Central Oklahoma Parrothead Association). The COPA Reefers play Trop Rock, Classic Rock, Blues, Pop, Country & their own Trop Rock Originals. In the summer of 2012, a group of individuals decided to pursue their passion and follow their dream of making music with their friends.…

Academy Member: Scott Kirby

www.scottkirby.com Singer, songwriter, guitarist, storyteller, sailor and road warrior are all words that aptly describe Scott Kirby. Writing songs for a new CD, performing 150 live shows a year throughout the US and Canada, and holding down the stage at his own club—Key West’s Smokin’ Tuna Saloon—keep the barnacles off this modern-day troubadour. A creative…

Academy Member: Paul Overstreet

www.pauloverstreet.com Paul Overstreet is a Grammy Award winning, country music singer-songwriter. Not only writing hits for himself, Paul has also penned songs for fellow country acts, including Randy Travis, Blake Shelton, Kenny Chesney and Keith Whitley. In 2018, Paul released his latest album, Somewhere in the Caribbean. As a songwriter, Overstreet has written and co-written…

Academy Member: Tall Paul (Paul Bobal)

www.TallPaul.com Tall Paul (Paul Bobal) was born in Cleveland, Ohio and raised in Virginia Beach, VA, where he played keyboards in “garage bands” from the age of 11. After seeing Doc & Merle Watson perform for freshman orientation at Appalachian State University, he taught himself to play acoustic guitar and started playing the college circuit…

TRMA Award Winners

2020

It's awards season Trop Rock fans!

The nomination round of the 13th Annual Trop Rock Music Awards is complete, and the final ballot will be emailed to all TRMA members on September 1st. The voting is open until midnight September 30th and the winners will be announced at an awards show in Key West on October 30th. The location and type of show is still pending due to Covid 19 regulations currently in place.
If you are not a current member of the Trop Rock Music Association, you can still join and vote in the 2020 awards up until September 30th. Just go to https://troprock.org/get-involved/#generalmembership.

Definition of Trop Rock Music: Tropical Rock (or Trop Rock) is a genre of popular music that incorporates elements of Rock and Roll, Country, Caribbean, Reggae or other musical genres to create a laid-back or “escapist” state of mind. Trop Rock may create its tropical or “island vibe” either with tropical or island-like instrumentation and production, or with beach, tropical or escapist lyrical themes, or both.

2020 Annual TRMA Nominees

1. Male Vocalist

Awarded to the top vote getter for excellence in performing and recording by a trop rock male vocalist, including a male vocalist performing in a duo, trio or band, during the eligibility year.

  • Aaron Scherz
  • Bob Karwin
  • Donny Brewer
  • James "Sunny Jim" White
  • Mike Nash

2. Female Vocalist

Awarded to the top vote getter for excellence in performing and recording by a trop rock female vocalist, including a female vocalist performing in a duo, trio or band, during the eligibility year.

  • Aubrey Wollett
  • Erica Sunshine Lee
  • Heather Vidal
  • Isabella Stefania
  • Robin Tricker

3. Duo/Trio

Awarded to the top vote getter for excellence in performing or recording as a trop rock duo or trio during the eligibility year.

  • The Dententions
  • Highway 1
  • Thom & Coley
  • Tropicool
  • Latitude

4. Band
Awarded to the top vote getter for excellence in performing or recording as a trop rock band of four or more members during the eligibility year.

  • The Boat Drunks
  • Donny Brewer & The Dock Rockers
  • Jimmy & The Parrots
  • Johnny Russler & The Beach Bum Band
  • Trop Rock Junkies

5. Entertainer of the Year
Awarded to the top vote getting Trop Rock solo, duo, trio or band, for excellence in all aspects of entertaining, including live performance, recording, song writing, video and broadcast, during the eligibility year. There are 6 entries this year due to a tie for 5th.

  • Bob Karwin
  • Donny Brewer
  • Erica Sunshine Lee
  • Mike Nash
  • James "Sunny Jim" White
  • Steve Tolliver

6. Album
Awarded to the top vote getting qualifying trop rock album, defined as an independent release of eight or more songs or 30 minutes of playing time, released during the eligible year, or in the 12 months preceding the eligibility year if the album was not on the final ballot in the preceding awards period. Awarded to Artist and Producer(s) (if the producer(s) is/are other than artist).

  • Ocean Road - Aaron Scherz (Aaron Scherz)
  • Eat, Beach, Sleep, Repeat - Reggie Starrett (Jeremy Scruggs)
  • The Miles Between - Bob Karwin (Donny Brewer)
  • Livin' The Dream - Johnny Russler & The Beach Bum Band (Michael Shehan & Johnny Russler)
  • Stay Thirsty - Mike Nash (Dave Demay)

7a. Song

Awarded to the Songwriter (listed in parenthesis). Given to the top vote getting qualifying trop rock song released during the eligible year, or in the 12 months preceding the eligibility year if the song was not on the final ballot in the preceding awards period. The song need not be part of a qualifying album. This category is open to all artists, not only TRMA Academy members like other categories. Check them out!

  • "Tacos, Tequila & Trop Rock" - Donny Brewer (Donny Brewer/Johnny Russler)
  • "Professional Drinker" - The Detentions (Dan Sullivan/Donny Brewer)
  • "Beach Town" - Aaron Scherz (Aaron Scherz, Johnny Bulford, Heidi Raye)
  • "Down by the Coastline" - Boomer Blake (Boomer Blake)
  • "Whole Lotta Beaches" - Reggie Starrett (Reggie Starrett)
  • "Will You Be My Shore" - Jack Mosley (Jack Mosley)
  • "Bad Bitch" - Erica Sunshine Lee (Erica Sunshine Lee)
  • "Postcards From The Road" - Mike Nash (Mike Nash/Aaron Scherz)
  • "Hammock in Havana" - Jesse Rice (Jesse Rice)
  • "Somewhere in the Caribbean" - Paul Overstreet (Paul Overstreet)

7b. Single

Awarded to the Songwriter (listed in parenthesis). Given to the top vote getting qualifying trop rock song released during the eligible year, or in the 12 months preceding the eligibility year if the song was not on the final ballot in the preceding awards period. The song need not be part of a qualifying album. This category is open to all artists, not only TRMA Academy members like other categories. Check them out!

  • "Tacos, Tequila & Trop Rock" - Donny Brewer (Donny Brewer)
  • "Beach Town" - Aaron Scherz (Aaron Scherz)
    "Verona Corona" - Jonas Lorence (Ron Flynt & Jonas Lorence)
  • "Down by the Coastline" - Boomer Blake (Danny Rosado)
  • "Whole Lotta Beaches" - Reggie Starrett (Clay Page)
  • "YOLO" - Joe Downing (Nathan Smith)
  • "When the Aliens Came" - Jack Mosley (Dave Signs/Jack Mosley)
  • "Single for the Summer" - Erica Sunshine Lee (Chip Martin/Erica Sunshine Lee) "Shore Thang" - Thom & Coley (Thom Shepherd & Coley McCabe Shepherd)
  • "Hammock in Havana" - Jesse Rice (Nick Gibbens/Jesse Rice)

8. Music Video of the Year
Awarded to the top vote getting official artist-sanctioned music video for a qualifying trop rock song, which video was released during the eligible year, or in the 12 months preceding the eligibility year if the video was not on the final ballot in the preceding awards period. The song need not have been released in the eligibility year. Awarded to Artist(s) and Video producer/director (in parenthesis). Check them out!

  • "When They Bring Back Happy Hour" - Don Middlebrook (Don Middlebrook/Sherry Perry) "Verona Corona" - Jonas Lorence (Jonas Lorence)
  • "When the Aliens Came" - Jack Mosley (Jack Mosley)
  • "Nobody Wins in Vegas" - Erica Sunshine Lee (Josh Mendez/Erica Sunshine Lee)
  • "I Know You" - Bob Karwin (Bob Karwin)

9. Best Album Art/Packaging
Awarded to the top vote getting trop rock album or EP cover art/design and packaging for an album or EP released during the eligibility year, or in the 12 months preceding the eligibility year for an album was not on the final ballot in the preceding awards year for Album of the Year or Best Art/Packaging. Awarded to artist and designer/artist (in parenthesis). Check them out!

  • Ocean Road - Aaron Scherz (Aaron Scherz)
  • Eat, Beach, Sleep, Repeat - Reggie Starrett (Reggie Starrett)
  • The Miles Between - Bob Karwin (Bob Karwin/Donny Brewer)
  • Stay Thirsty - Mike Nash (Mike Nash)
  • It's Still Summer Somewhere - James "Sunny Jim" White (Adela White/Hallie C. White

10. Horizon Award
Awarded to the top vote-getting Trop Rock solo, duo, trio, or band who shows the most promise for contributing to the Trop Rock genre through performance, songwriting and recording. Previous winners are not eligible. There are 6 entries because there was a tie for 5th.

The following previous winners are not eligible: Danny Rosado, Cory Young, Jesse Rice, Donny Brewer, Brittany Kingery, The Southern Drawl Band, John Friday, Jimi Pappas, Capt. Josh, Jimmy Parrish, Troy Allan, PHINS

  • Aubrey Wollett
  • Erica Sunshine Lee
  • Joe Downing
  • Jonas Lorence
  • Paul Overstreet
  • Robin Tricker

11. Musician

Awarded to the top vote getting trop rock musicians for outstanding musicianship, intended to recognize band members, or musicians for excellence in performing and/or recording in support of trop rock artists during the eligibility year.

  • Alan Jax Bowers (percussion)
  • John Patti (steel pan)
  • Johnny Doolittle (bass guitar)
  • Mark Mireles (steel pan)
  • Steve Way (percussion)

12. Songwriter

Awarded to the top vote getter for excellence in trop rock songwriting.

  • Aaron Scherz
  • Donny Brewer
  • Erica Sunshine Lee
  • Paul Overstreet
  • Jack Mosley

13. Radio Station

Awarded to a radio station for excellence in trop rock radio broadcasting during the eligibility year.

  • Shore Life Radio
  • Palapa Mac Radio
  • Radio Trop Rock
  • Tiki Man Radio
  • Songwriter's Island Radio

14. Radio Program

There are two Radio Program categories on the ballot - "live" and "recorded". Please vote for one show in each category.

Radio Program - Live

  • "Trop Rockin' The USA" - Eric & Gina Babin
  • "Sunday Morning With the Tiki Man" - The Tiki Man & The Original Hippie Chick
  • "Island Time Radio Show" - Dennis King & DKtheDJ

Radio Program - Prerecorded

  • "4 & 4 With Gina" - Gina Babin
  • "Tropical Play with DK" - Dennis King
  • "Beach Bars & Guitars" - Johnny Russler
  • "Happy Hour 2.0" - Greg Dumas
  • "Bayou Troubadour" - Matt Hoggatt

15. Live Music Venue
Awarded to the top vote getting venue for outstanding presentation of live trop rock music during the eligibility year.

  • Nav-A-Gator Bar & Grill - Lake Suzy, FL
  • Smokin' Tuna Saloon - Key West, FL
  • T-Bone Tom's - Kemah, TX
  • Tropical Isle - New Orleans, LA
  • Whiskey Joe's - Tampa, FL

16. House Concert Venue
Small & Large Awarded to the top vote getter for outstanding house concert venue - small and large, based on annual attendance with the threshold to be determined annually at the discretion of the Awards committee. Awarded to the
host/hostesses of non-profit concert-style home-based venues featuring Trop Rock artists.

House Concert Venue - Small

  • Casa Brown - Craig & Jill Brown
  • Isla Bella - Fred & Sara Guererro
  • The Postcard - Dean & Terrie McClain
  • Wester-Rita-Ville - Mike & Becky Carpenter

House Concert Venue - Large

  • Casa Tortooga - Kevin & Tish Disston
  • The Habitat - Ken & Heather Settlemyer
  • Port of Indecision - Dan & Sharon Mueller
  • The Yard - Mark & Sharon Leverett

17. Event of the Year
Small & Large Awarded to the top vote getters for outstanding events, small and large, featuring multiple trop rock artists. Meeting of the Minds is excluded from this category because it is a National Convention. Small and large categories based on total registration, with the threshold to be determined annually at the discretion of the awards committee.

Event of the Year - Small

  • A1A Beach Bash - St. Augustine Beach, FL
  • Lone Star Luau - Marble Falls, TX
  • Phins to the West - Mesquite, NV
  • Summer ChILL - Schaumburg, IL
  • Trop Rockin' The Ozarks - Lake of the Ozarks, MO

Event of the Year - Large

  • Music on the Bay - Tampa, FL
  • Pardi Gras - New Orleans, LA

18. Music Business Professional of the Year
Awarded to the top vote getter for outstanding performance as a music business professional during the eligibility year. Eligible music business professionals include: operators or executives of independent record companies, music publishing companies and media companies; journalists; booking agents and managers; concert promoters; producers of music, broadcast or film; legal and accounting professionals, etc.

Nominees and winners are selected by TRMA academy members and will be announced at the awards show.

19. Fan of the Year

This award recognizes a Trop Rock "fan" for their support and promotion of Trop Rock music. It is meant for an individual/couple and not a group. Previous winners are NOT eligible.

The following previous winners are NOT eligible: Diana Christ, Fred Wunder, Colleen Fuchs, Debbie Hess, Marc & Tammy Hollander, Sam & Gina Densler, Steven "Koz" Kozlowski, Tami Tower, Dave & Carolyn McBride, Dale & Peach Hench, Gary & Patti Janco, Shirley Gates

  • Kristen McFadden
  • Linda Robb
  • Roger & Donna Beam Sheila Jorgerson
  • Tom Klinker & Nancy Martin
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