Sofia Rei and Mahsa & Marjan Vahdat Win the World Music Categories at the 12th Independent Music Awards

Sofia Rei - De Tierra y Oro
Sofia Rei – De Tierra y Oro
The 12th Independent Music Awards (The IMAs) announced the winners of this year’s international awards for independent bands and artists. Argentine artist Sofia Rei won the World Beat award with her album De Tierra y Oro.

It is such an honor since the jury was comprised of some of my musical idols: Tom Waits, Ziggy Marley, Suzanne Vega, Meshell Ndegeocello, McCoy Tyner, John Medeski, Chris Wood, Raul Midon, Arturo Sandoval, and more,” said Sofia Rei. “Back in 2009 we received this award for my previous album, Sube Azul, and am super happy to have been chosen again. Thank you very much for your continued support!

Banned Iranian duo Mahsa & Marjan Vahdat took the top spot in World Traditional Album with their album Twinklings Of Hope. Their music is outlawed in their native country. The record was released by the Kirkelig Kulturverksted label based in Oslo, Norway.

An archival recordings from Woody Guthrie, Woody at 100: The Woody Guthrie Centennial Collection, received the honor for the Smithsonian-Folkways label in the Compilation category.

Mahsa & Marjan Vahdat - Twinklings Of Hope
Mahsa & Marjan Vahdat – Twinklings Of Hope
With winning entries from the United States, Canada, France, U.K., Switzerland, Iran, Spain, Netherlands, Singapore, Venezuela, South Africa and Korea, The Independent Music Awards continues to provide unprecedented exposure for a diverse range of incredible self-released and independent label talent,” said Martin Folkman, Executive Director of The Independent Music Awards.

The 12th IMA Judging panel featured Tom Waits & Kathleen Brennan, Ziggy Marley, Suzanne Vega, Del McCoury, Meshell Ndegeocello, Pete Wentz, Shelby Lynne, G. Love, Brandi Carlile, McCoy Tyner, Judy Collins, John Medeski, Chris Wood, Andrea Marcovicci, Raul Midon, “Weird Al’ Yankovic, Bernie Worrell, Jeremy Taggart, Frederick “Toots” Hibbert, Arturo Sandoval, Joel Madden, Jonatha Brooke and Jim Lauderdale.

The IMA Judging panel was also comprised of record label executives, club and festival talent buyers, music journalists, film & TV music supervisors .

In addition to the judge-determined winners announced today, music fans from around the world have until midnight Friday, July 19th to champion their favorite Nominees and determine The 12th IMA Vox Pop Winners by voting online at

The fan-selected Winners will benefit from additional marketing support from The Independent Music Awards. To date more than 23,000 music fans have cast their votes in support of their favorite 12th IMA artists

Long Form Video Winner – Lou Pallo of Les Paul’s Trio with Special Guests, Thank You Les: A Tribute To Les Paul

Read about other winners at

Author: Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music music for many years. He founded the websites and Angel produced several TV specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World.


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