Behind the Eddies

The Capital Region Thomas Edison Music Awards, or The Eddies, are an opportunity to amplify, empower and celebrate professionals working in the area’s wide-ranging music scene.

Founded in 2019, the Eddies were created by Jim Murphy and Salvatore Prizio, who together had founded Capital Records Live! the previous year. Murphy is marketing and corporate development director at Proctors Collaborative and publisher of The Collaborative magazine. Sal Prizio is program coordinator at Proctors Collaborative.

“Both Capital Records Live! and The Eddies are about recognition, celebration, collaboration and exploration,” said Murphy and Prizio in a joint statement. “The talent in our region is unbelievable but up to now the ‘sum’ of the individual parts didn’t add up because there was maybe too little collaboration and definitely too little recognition. Our goal is to a shine a big bright spotlight on the music scene, and and see what can occur when everyone is gathered in the room together.”

In the inaugural year, 63 luminaries drawn from the region’s talent pool including club owners, sound technicians, educators, journalists and performers judged 33 categories, granting Eddies to winners from a list of over 140 nominees (ranging from soloists and group to teachers, engineers, deejays, photographers and others). Three additional categories were voted on by the public and the Hall of Fame and Educator of the Year awards were chosen by the co-organizers of the Eddies with consultation from members of the judging pool.

Thomas Edison conceived the phonograph prior to moving his Edison Machine Works to Schenectady (and providing the basis for General Electric), but his invention—the first to reproduce sound rather than simply record it—transcended geography, bringing music to the world. On its inception, the National Academy of Recordings arts and Sciences considered naming its award the Eddie, in recognition of Edison’s indelible contribution, but opted for a nod to Edison’s gramophone (hence, The Grammys).

The Eddies are a production of Capital Records Live!Proctors Collaborative and The Collaborative regional arts magazine.