RALEIGH, N.C. — Eric and Leigh Gibson stepped onstage to accept the title of Entertainer of the Year sharing the same thought.
“Guess that proves to me that last year wasn’t a fluke,” Leigh told the crowd at the International Bluegrass Music Awards in Raleigh, N.C., last Thursday night.
“We never thought it would happen again,” marveled Eric via cellphone from North Carolina, where the North Country bluegrass band was continuing to enjoy the IBMA convention.
The Gibson Brothers, who wore that same crown last year, arrived in Raleigh with seven other nominations for this year’s awards.
The experience kicked off on a high note at a luncheon Thursday afternoon, when Eric was named Songwriter of the Year, along with Joe Newberry, for a song they wrote together called “They Called it Music.”
So when the brothers and their band — Mike Barber (bass), Clayton Campbell (banjo) and Jesse Brock (mandolin) — got to the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts with one award already, “we were feeling pretty good,” Eric said.
That mood was sustained when the group’s name was called for Vocal Group of the Year and then again for “They Called it Music” as Song of the Year.
Newberry, who has collaborated with the Gibsons in the past and is a good friend, lives in Raleigh.
“So it was especially sweet for him to stand on that stage,” Eric said.
The song was one that Eric thought was pretty special from the moment the words were on paper.
Judging from its popularity, he said, “it spoke to people everywhere.”
The Gibson Brothers performed at the show, playing “Dying for Someone to Live For” from their “They Called it Music” album.
And then came the surreal moment that wrapped up the show, winning that second consecutive Entertainer of the Year title.