RFT Music Awards, The Winners, St. Louis 

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The votes have been counted. Here's a slide show of the RFT Music Awards winners for 2008, as chosen by visitors to this Web site, mail-in voters and those at the RFT Music Showcase on June 1.
OF 19
Best Blues Artist Bottoms Up Blues Gang: If you haven’t come across the Bottoms Up Blues Gang yet, you must be either dead or in jail. — Christian Schaeffer
Best DJ
Flex Boogie: Flex’s urban sound is soulfully funky and frequently incorporates the necessary vocals-heavy hip-hop and pop tracks required to initiate Midwestern booty-shaking. — Kristy Wendt
By Dana Plonka
Best Untraditional Americana/Folk
The Bottle Rockets: The Bottle Rockets should have exploded ages ago, and they continue to explore just how much soul can be drawn from the rock and country well. — Roy Kasten
By Lyle Whitworth
Best Americana/Folk
Rum Drum Ramblers: It’s nearly disturbing to witness the little white boys in the Rum Drum Ramblers do the blues so well. — Jaime Lees
By Kristan Lieb
Best Garage Band
The Trip Daddys: Whether you call it punk-infused rockabilly, rock-infused country or swing-tinged blues, the Trip Daddys channel everything that is pure and nostalgic about rock & roll. — Shae Moseley
Best Punk/Hardcore
The Pubes: The four lads in the Pubes celebrate a return to punk’s charming naiveté while using the wit and fury of their mohawked forebears. — Christian Schaeffer
By Kristan Lieb
Best Rap/Hip-Hop Artist
Midwest Avengers: It’s no small feat to make rap-metal cool again, but the two emcees and three instrumentalists in the Midwest Avengers do their best to revive the subgenre. — Christian Schaeffer
By Kristan Lieb
Best Hip-Hop DJ
Needles: If you thought Lil’ Wayne sounded hot on the original hook to “Hello Brooklyn,” check it as Needles envisions it, with a sick horn break that combines the best of the Jay’s high-powered production with the soulful sound of NYC’s jazz rap extraordinaires. — Keegan Hamilton
By Lauren Winchester
Best Indie Band
Bunnygrunt: By night, Matt Harnish and his merry cast of ’Grunt workers unleash foaming-at-the-mouth twee-punk that will tickle your pop fancy. — Annie Zaleski
By Todd Owyoung
Best Jazz Artist
Erin Bode: With a new CD — the first in two years centered on her work with her own band — due out in a few weeks, Erin Bode seems ready to move into the spotlight as a national and international artist. — Dean C. Minderman
Best Local Release (on a label)
Ludo, You’re Awful, I Love You (Island)
With the release of You’re Awful, I Love You, count Ludo among those who dodged the cut-out-bin bullet. — Annie Zaleski
Best Local Release (self-released)
Space Parlour: Live in St. Louis Series 2007
By compiling songs from artists specializing in folk (Casey Reid), punk (Ded Bugs) and rock (That’s My Daughter), Nick Acquisto’s comp serves as a document of St. Louis talent — as well as a tip sheet for many of this city’s best bands. — Christian Schaeffer
By Lyle Whitworth
Best Hard Rock/Metal
Shame Club: Shame Club’s new album, Come On is so righteous and full of dude-jams that Detroit’s Small Stone Records made a bro-verture and re-released it earlier this year.— Annie Zaleski
Best New Artist
The Blind Eyes: Like many “new” bands in town, the Blind Eyes should be familiar to regular show-goers, especially since its lineup is the Gentleman Callers minus guitarist Mike Virag. — Annie Zaleski
By Kristan Lieb
Best Pop Band
Sex Robots: The music of the Sex Robots is best experienced when its shambolic two-and-a-half-minute burners are witnessed live. Its concerts are effortless in the way that only experienced musicians can present. — Jaime Lees
Best Funk/Soul/R&B
Dogtown Allstars: The four-piece remains a shining star of feel-good dance music, bringing together noodle-dancing hippie chicks and goatee-stroking jazzbos under the sway of the almighty groove. — Christian Schaeffer
By Todd Owyoung
Best Reggae Band
Murder City Players: Attribute Murder City Players’ longevity — the band turned an impressive 25 years old this year — to its chameleonic nature. — Annie Zaleski
By Kristan Lieb
Best Live Act & Best Rock Band
7 Shot Screamers: 7 Shot Screamers is such a good — nay, make that consistently good — live band, that it’s almost too easy to take the quartet for granted. — Annie Zaleski
By Jennifer Silverberg
Best Eclectic/Uncategorizable
The Conformists: Like the slightly shifting monotony of a ship at sea on choppy waters, the Conformists writes music that is ever-morphing yet manages to create a trancelike effect. — Shae Moseley
Best Blues Artist Bottoms Up Blues Gang: If you haven’t come across the Bottoms Up Blues Gang yet, you must be either dead or in jail. — Christian Schaeffer