2012 HPMAs Ballot, Now Online (UPDATED x2!)

UPDATED UPDATE: Scratch the below; I’d heard from a few different people that you could vote once per day for the HPMA nominees, but apparently that’s not the case. It’s once per email address, and that’s it. It’s on the ballot page, too, although I’d swear it wasn’t there previously — the HP folks may have added the line because people (like yours truly) were getting/giving bad information.

Sorry about that, folks…

UPDATE: Okay, so apparently I misunderstood the rules for the voting. You can vote not just once, but once per day on the ballot for whoever you want to win, from now until August 5th.

Ergo, if your favorite band’s somewhere on the list, you’d better make yourself some kind of reminder to vote every damn day, or somebody else’s devoted band of Twitter followers is going to swamp the category with their votes, and your favorite band will lose.

My two cents: for what it’s worth, I’m not so keen on this — I believe in the One Listener, One Vote philosophy, which is why I naively assumed that’d be the case here. As with the wide-open nominations process, I think allowing people to flood the HPMAs with multiple votes only really benefits the bands/people who may not be the best musically but are better at mobilizing their street teams & fans. Which I think kind of sucks, honestly, for something that’s supposed to be about music.

But hey, this ain’t my awards show, so y’know. I will cast my vote(s) and move on…


And since we’re talking about awards… Yep, the Houston Press just announced that voting is now open for the 2012 Houston Press Music Awards.

You can cast your vote from now until midnight, August 5th, which is also the night of the HPMA Showcase, otherwise known as the grandaddy of music festival-type things around these parts and an all-round awesome time. No details as to where in town that’ll be — although I must admit that I seriously miss when it was scattered up and down the light-rail line on Main; that was very handy — but we’ll post ’em as soon as we hear, don’t worry.

In the meantime, vote away, y’all. The ballot’s pretty, um, interesting this year, honestly; a whole lot of stuff I’d hoped might make the cut didn’t, unfortunately, but I’m seeing a few names I recognize & like, even still.

For one thing, I sincerely think Alkari‘s Blackout Falls is the best damn release of the “Best LP/CD/EP” nominees, no offense to the good people in Bang Bangz, The Illegal Wiretaps, or Free Radicals, all three of whom released some good, good stuff this year, or Murder the Stout, who I didn’t realize had released an album this year (damn, I need to get that…).

Then there’s The Suffers, up for “Best New Act”, Asli Omar of The Tontons for “Best Female Vocals,” ever-present nominees The Wild Moccasins for “Best Pop Artist” (naturally), the last place you look for “Best Modern Rock” (not sure what the delineation was supposed to be between that and “Best Rock,” btw), and I’m glad to see Mikey & The Drags get nominated, even if the “Best Garage/Punk/Hardcore” category makes me scratch my head, monkey-style.

Venomous Maximus made the list for “Best Metal,” as well they should (but no Omotai? Fuck…), and Fat Tony and Kyle Hubbard both rightly did the same for “Best Solo Rapper” (glad to see Thurogood Wordsmith on there, too; he’d slipped my mind when I was making my own picks). Los Skarnales hit the “Best Latin Artist” category, as always, and the same goes for Free Radicals in “Best Jazz.”

Buxton and Robert Ellis make well-deserved appearances on the “Best Americana” list, although I’m perturbed not to see Finnegan or Folk Family Revival in there, as well.

Speaking of which, I’m also a little perturbed that I’ve heard exactly none of the “Best Song” nominees — although it’s debatable whether that’s my shortcoming or the list’s — and there’s some truly WTF? moments on here (no sign of Buxton on the “Best LP/CD/EP” list, seriously?).

Also, um, where were “Local Musician of the Year” and “Best Country” on the nomination form? Did I really, truly miss both those categories? Hell, was I somehow filling out last year’s nomination form by mistake? Damn, I hope not…

And my hat’s off to whatever genius decided it was time to nominate Jandek as “Local Musician of the Year” — that’s freaking brilliant, especially if the guy wins and is forced to come onstage to accept the award.

All in all, like I said, an interesting list, if not necessarily the one I’d have picked myself. That’s kind of how it’s gone these past few years, since the open-nominations process started — nowadays if a band’s savvy enough and has enough devoted fans/followers, they can flat-out push their way onto the ballot.

My guess is that this explains how rapper Noon, who I’ve heard of but never actually heard and who’s been relatively low-profile ’til now, got nominated not only for “Best Solo Rapper,” but also for “Best Mixtape,” “Best Song,” “Best Local Music Video,” “Best New Act,” and “Best Songwriter”. This guy seriously owes his fans, Facebook friends, and/or Twitter followers several beers apiece or something, because they nearly got him a clean sweep, at least in the nominations. Either that or, holy crap, he really is the Second Coming of Houston Hip-Hop (I’ll have to give him a listen and get back to you if that’s really the case).

And hey, that’s fine — if that’s how the system works, that’s how you have to play it to be able to win, get yourself noticed, all that stuff. I don’t have a problem with somebody doing what they have to do within the context of the process to get on the ballot. It just makes me a little sad to see some bands who don’t necessarily work things that way get left by the wayside.

Eh. I’m not going to go into Grumpy-Old-Man mode here, don’t worry; just looking forward to (hopefully) attending the Awards Showcase again this year, after a year or three off from it. Congrats and best of luck to all those nominated…

13 Responses to “2012 HPMAs Ballot, Now Online (UPDATED x2!)”

  1. Jason Smith on June 29th, 2012 at 4:12 pm


  2. Jeremy Hart on June 29th, 2012 at 4:14 pm

    Dude, don’t tempt me. First prize in each category would be a half-drunk bottle of Saint Arnold’s… ;)

  3. Kam Franklin on July 2nd, 2012 at 11:34 am

    Hey Jeremy,

    Thanks for supporting The Suffers! II was really shocked Folk Family Revival and Tyagaraja weren’t nominated because they’re so good! Anyway, I think SCR Awards would be really cool!DO IT!


  4. Nick Cooper on July 3rd, 2012 at 12:16 pm

    Where did y’al get this update from? I talked to the Houston Press and they said it wasn’t one a day, just one per email.

  5. Dug of Free Rads on July 3rd, 2012 at 12:29 pm

    Hi, just wanted to let you know it is only one vote per email address:

    From: Allisen Picos
    Date: Tue, Jul 3, 2012 at 9:10 AM
    Subject: Re: HPMA one vote per day?

    What it says on the site is true – we are only counting one vote per email.


  6. Jeremy Hart on July 3rd, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    Hrm. Okay, I guess I got some incorrect info on that; sorry, everybody! Amending the post now…

  7. Jeremy Hart on July 3rd, 2012 at 12:47 pm

    Thanks, Nick & Dug, for pointing out my error, and apologies all ’round once again… :(

  8. Allisen Picos (Marketing & Events Director - Houston Press) on July 3rd, 2012 at 1:33 pm

    Hello all,

    I am the Marketing & Events Director for the Houston Press. In the past, voting has been once per day, but this year, we are only counting one vote per email. Apologies if there was any confusion. We feel that counting just one vote per email will be a more accurate way to determine the best of the best. Good luck to all. See you at the Showcase on Aug 5th.

    PS: Save the Date for the Awards Ceremony. We will be announcing the winners on Aug 8th at Warehouse Live. For updates visit – http://www.HPMusicAwards.com


  9. Jeremy Hart on July 3rd, 2012 at 3:12 pm

    Very cool — thanks for the clarification, Allisen, and I’m sorry for the mixup! I agree that one-person-one-vote’s the better way to go, definitely. :)

  10. Nick Cooper on July 3rd, 2012 at 4:30 pm

    Yay! Democracy in action. Except…. I have a lot of email addresses! Anyway, I am just voting once.
    etc. etc.

  11. SPACE CITY ROCK » 2012 Houston Press Music Awards, Right Around the Corner (i.e., This Sunday) on August 3rd, 2012 at 11:52 pm

    […] while I’ll admit I griped a bit about this year’s ballot, hell, the Showcase is looking very, very cool. I’m glad to see it back in Downtown, for one […]

  12. SPACE CITY ROCK » Right Down to the Wire: Houston Press Music Award Nominations Close Tonight! on May 22nd, 2013 at 9:11 pm

    […] everybody & their brother can nominate anybody they want, and after seeing the results, I was left a bit perturbed, to say the […]

  13. SPACE CITY ROCK » The HPMAs Are Here! (Kind Of!) Vote Now! Controversy! on October 21st, 2014 at 10:21 am

    […] grant that yours truly has thrown some punches (albeit hopefully friendly ones) their way in years past, particularly around the whole “open nominations” thing they were trying for a while […]

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