The nominations for the 2012 Blues Music Awards, originally the W.C. Handy Awards, have been announced and, as usual, the roster includes many performers who have performed at the North Atlantic Blues Festival and at city venues. The 33rd Blues Music Awards will be held May 10 at the Cook Convention Center in downtown Memphis, Tenn.

Ana Popovic, who has performed a number of times at the Time Out Pub and is in the lineup for the 2012 NABF, has been nominated three times. She got nods for Contemporary Blues Album (“Unconditional”), Contemporary Blues Female Artist and for her DVD “An Evening at Trasimeno Lake.” Also nominated is Nora Jean Wallace, up for the Koko Taylor Award and part of a festival Koko Taylor tribute; and Mike Zito, up for Blues Rock Album (“Greyhound”) and set to perform in 2012 with the Royal Southern Brotherhood.

Eric Bibb, who played the penultimate slot at the 2011 fest, has been nominated for Acoustic Album (“Troubadour Live”) and Acoustic Artist. Trampled Under Foot, who opened the 2011 fest’s second day, is up for Band of the Year. Magic Slim, another 2011 performer, is nominated for Traditional Blues Male Artist.

Every one of the nominees for B.B. King Entertainer of the Year has played in Rockland — Candye Kane, Lil’ Ed, Ruthie Foster, Tab Benoit and Tommy Castro. Others who have played to Midcoast blues fans include Rory Block, Billy Branch, Lurrie Bell, Bettye LaVette, Janiva Magness, Susan Tedeschi, Joe Louis Walker, Duke Robillard, Michael Burks, Charlie Musselwhite, Kim Wilson, Sugar Ray Norcia, Sax Gordon, Diunna Greenleaf, Maria Muldaur, David Maxwell, Eden Brent, Marcia Ball, Johnny Rawls, Bobby Rush and Curtis Salgado. For the complete list of nominations, visit

In addition to Popovic and Zito with the Royal Southern Brotherhood, performers announced for the 2012 North Atlantic Blues Festival include Devon Allman, Cyril Neville, Charlie Wooten and Mean Willie Green, Anthony Gomes and Grammy Award winner Chubby Carrier. Also on board is the Tribute to KoKo Taylor with the Blues Machine, Taylor’s band, with special guests who will include Wallace, Jackie Scott and Melvia “Chick” Rogers and someone promised to be “a big surprise.”

The 2012 NABF is set for Saturday and Sunday, July 14 and 15 in Rockland’s Harbor Park. Advance tickets are $25 either day or $50 for the weekend; the Saturday ticket waives cover charges at the nighttime club crawl. To order and for more information, visit

The Monday Night Blues series at Time Out Pub will resume in February. A New Year’s Eve Party with the Chrissie O’Dell Band is set for Saturday, Dec. 31 at the nearby Trade Winds Motor Inn. The $199 per couple package includes room, four-course dinner, dance, party favors, champagne toast, breakfast and use of the pool and hot tub. For more information, call Paul Benjamin at 596-6055.

VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by email to