Sunday night, the Sorensen Media Group’s 11th annual Island Music Awards kicked off with a bang, opening with 4 For 4, which won in its category for best cover band and got the crowd gathered in the Lotte Hotel ballroom dancing and singing along to both new and classic favorites. In addition, the band’s singer, Kaylee Villasoto was recognized as this year’s Best Female Performer.
With more than a hundred thousand votes cast in the event’s overall 13 different categories, the awards ceremony brought in dozens of musicians and dancers alike for a night of fun and performances by renowned figures and groups such as Friends With Instruments, The Dolls, and Joe Guam.
Topping the charts for his open-format style of pulling from different genres of music such as freestyle, festival, and future bass, DJ Sylnt took home an award for being recognized as this year’s Best Club DJ.
With his ukelele in hand, Joe Guam earned three awards: Best Happy Hour, Best Male Performer, and his piece “Magahet” featuring for Best Song.
“I just want to dedicate this to my wife. I really cannot do any of this without her. She’s at home. She takes care of the kids. She washes my laundry. She does everything for me. She’s also a monster at our music production, so thank you so much honey, I love you,” Joe Guam said.
Known for their singles such as “Running Away” and “EZ4U,” the Yona-based progressive rock and reggae The John Dank Show won in their category of Best Island Style/Reggae Band.
In addition, Casanova took home the gold for being this year’s Best Breakout Artist/Group, the Phoenix Stage Band won in their category of Best Dance Band, and Pop Rocks and Soda was recognized as the Best Rock Band.
Running up against the University of Guam’s Latte Tones and the Tamuning Elementary School Choir, it was the Mangilao Church Choir that won in their category.
As for the other performers, Fusion won for Best Contemporary Dance Group and Inetnon Gef Pago won for Best Cultural Dance Group.
For the IMA’s Island Icon Inductee, music producer Dante Trinidad was awarded for his service and experience in the local community.
Proceeds from this year’s IMAs were given to support the Jon Anderson Foundation, a fund that will help produce an upcoming scholarship for journalism students attending the University of Guam.