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Written by  Jerry Averill

I arrived at the 8th Annual She Rock Awards Show (hosted by the Women’s International Music Network) at the House of Blues in Anaheim and was really not sure what to expect.  I've covered countless live music events over the years, but never photographed an awards show like this per se.  When I walked into the venue, the entire floor was filled with large round tables similar to many of the wedding receptions I have shot over the years.  As it moved closer to show time, the venue began to fill and their was a palpable excitement in the air.  I could tell this show was going to be special.

When the lights finally dimmed, an amazing 4 piece band from Japan called D_Drive hit the stage.  They performed a few original hard rock instrumental tunes that really set the tone for what would be an exciting show.  Host Laura Whitmore got things off to a fantastic start by introducing her co-host Mindi Abair who performed a brand new unreleased song, “Where There’s A Woman There’s a Way”.  She started at the piano and then finished up in fine form on the sax.  The awards presentations then began with the recipients coming to the podium, each to accept their well-deserved accolades accompanied by motivating and emotional speeches.

One of my favorite moments was presentation of The Icon award to the one and only Suzi Quatro.  The award was presented by Cherie Currie of The Runaways and highlighted how Quatro opened those doors for legendary female artists like Joan Jett, Girlschool as well as Chrissie Hynde.  After Suzi was handed her award, she grabbed her bass and jokingly told Cherie to 'get the fuck off my stage', launching into a rousing rendition of “Johnnie B Good” with the help of the all-female house band.  All I can say is WOW!!

The award presentations continued throughout the evening along with electrifying performances from rocker Lzzy Hale of Halestorm, Grammy nominated singer-songwriter Linda Perry of 4 Non Blondes, singer-songwriter Willia Amai, chart topping and critically acclaimed bassist Tal Wilkenfeld, as well as singer Jenna Paone.

The She Rocks Award Show was capped off in unbelievable fashion with Gloria Gaynor receiving The Legend award, the most prestigious of the evening.  She then took the stage and closed the show with two songs including current Grammy nominated song Talkin' 'Bout Jesus” as well he most well-known classic, I Will Survive”.  It was a spectacular way to end an amazing show to honor some truly incredible women!


The full list of 2020 honorees included:

  • Gloria Gaynor - Legend Award
  • Linda Perry - Powerhouse Award
  • Tal Wilkenfeld - Vision Award
  • Suzi Quatro - Icon Award
  • Beatie Wolfe - Innovator Award
  • Suzanne D’Addario Brouder - Champion Award
  • Tara Low - Dreaming Out Loud Award
  • Myrna Sislen - Trailblazer Award
  • Judy Schaefer - Excellence Award
  • Ebonie Smith - Mad Skills Award
  • Jenna Paone - Spirit Award
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