- Bryan Oller
Style of music, in 10 words or less: "American gothic country"
Three artists he owes everything to: His father, the Beatles and Johnny Cash
Debut performance: 1983 (with the SIDS)
Recordings: With the Autono: Dark Horse Dreams (1989), This Is the Autono (1991), A Way From Here (1993), This Town (1994 single forBillboard Magazine compilation), Machines (1995). With the Lazy Spacemen: Singing to Ghosts (2000), "Whichever Way the Wind Blows" (single, 2013), Songs About My Hometown (2013). EP coming out in November: Death Comes for Ella Mae Pixley.
Why he matters: The most significant recent developments in Chuck Snow's life, he says, are saving his house from foreclosure, getting a new Vox AC 15 guitar amp, and not having to pawn a guitar in six months. The irascibly talented singer-songwriter's subjects range from the more questionable aspects of the Uncle Wilber Fountain to the undeniably moving "Whichever Way the Wind Blows," written and recorded in the midst of the Waldo Canyon Fire. While a solo CD titled Death Comes for Ella Mae Pixley is being readied for release, the musician continues to express his rock-and-roots side in bands that have included the Rat Bastards, the Lo-Fi Cowboys and the Lazy Spacemen.
2nd place: Andy Clifton
3rd place: Daniel James Eaton (Briffaut)