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The 2020 Golden Ear Awards

Inducted into the Seattle Jazz Hall of Fame

Robin Holcomb
Moc Escobedo
Hans Teuber

NW Recording of the Year

Duende Libre, The Dance She Spoke

NW Acoustic Jazz Ensemble of the Year

Sundae + Mr. Goessl

Alternative Jazz Group of the Year

Ryan Burns

NW Concert of the Year

Ahamefule J. Oluo: Music from Susan, streamed at the Earshot Jazz Festival (10/18/2020)

NW Jazz Instrumentalist of the Year

Alex Dugdale

Emerging Artist of the Year

Abbey Blackwell

NW Vocalist of the Year

Johnaye Kendrick

Community in Action Awards

In recognition of their dedication to the enrichment of the Seattle jazz community

Josh Hou and Max Holmberg for Jazztalk Seattle

Gordon Brown for LoudSwell.com (formerly LiveConcertsStream.com)

Marina Albero for the Quarantine Sessions 

Past Winners

2019201820172016 2015 20142013 • 2012 • 2011 • 2010 • 2009 • Hall of Fame


The 2020 Golden Ear Awards, celebrating the contributions and achievements in Seattle jazz, were presented at The Royal Room on March 12, 2021. Alex Dugdale’s FADE Quartet opened the evening (Dugdale on saxophone, John Hansen on piano, Greg Feingold on bass, and Max Holmberg on drums), and the awards were presented via prerecorded video during intermission. Special thanks to emcees Abe Beeson and Eugenie Jones, video editor Josh Manley for the awards ceremony video.

Each year, the Golden Ear awards give jazz fans an opportunity to vote for the outstanding musicians, community members and events of the previous year. A call for nominations goes out in January, with a public ballot then distributed by the Earshot Jazz website and publication.

We congratulate all the nominees in this annual look at the region’s vibrant jazz ecology, and thank you, Golden Ear voters, for your participation in recognizing and celebrating all of the incredible talent in the Northwest.


About the Golden Ear Awards

Earshot Jazz initiated the Golden Ear Awards in 1990 to recognize the accomplishments of Seattle jazz artists over the previous year, and to induct significant members of the jazz community into the local Jazz Hall of Fame. Over the years, the award categories have shifted slighty, but the essence of the process has remained the same.

Have someone you’d like to nominate for the next Golden Ear Awards?

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