PEPPERELL — Six local residents were among 14 regional participants from the New England Country Music Organization (NECMO) to win awards in a week-long Country Music Week competition in Pigeon Forge, Tenn., sponsored by the North America Country Music Associations, International (NACMAI).
Competition covered many categories and the 600 competitors came from 15 states and Canada.
Local award recipients were:
* Hank Martin, of Pepperell, and Ginny Johnson, of Rockland — Vocal Duo of the Year in the New Country category.
* Deborahanne Mayer, of Townsend — Horizon Award for Female Vocalist, Traditional Country.
* Paul Bergeron, of Townsend — Male Vocalist of the Year, New Country.
* NECMO founders Darlene and Don Coutu, of Pepperell — Excellence Award.
* Ashmont Station (with members from Pepperell, Rockland, Dorchester and Peabody) — Most Promising Band, New Country.
Elections took place at an NACMAI executive board meeting at which Darlene Coutu was elected national executive vice president. Don Coutu was elected to become eastern region director. NECMO headquarters is on Hollis Street in Pepperell.
The list of 14 NECMO award recipients includes Caitlyn Allison, of Greenville, N.H., Rising Star Female Vocalist Age 7 to 12 and Horizon Award for Female Entertainer Age 7 to 12; Tracilynne, of Burlington (Horizon Award for her New Country CD “Driven”); and Peter Miller, of Lowell (Most Promising Male Vocalist, New Country). – Don Eriksson