Best Songwriter

Drew Keriakedes

In music that evoked Americana's dark, down-and-out side, Drew Keriakedes, aka Shmootzi the Clod, covered a few favorite topics: booze-soaked revelry, the macabre, or both. And sex. But after a few years with Seattle troupe Circus Contraption (he joined in 2005), his songs, tellingly, developed another theme: the outsider who's found a sense of belonging; and his persona—a scraggly, loose-jointed hobo/madman whose face could stretch into a scary/joyous leer—surprisingly became the emotional core of CC's presciently named 2008–09 stage production "The Show to End All Shows." The closing number he wrote for that show, "Love Makes the World Go Round," the simplest possible three-chord slow waltz, was achingly poignant—devastatingly so when sung at the Hale's Palladium benefit in memory of Drew and the other victims of the May 30 Cafe Racer shootings. GAVIN BORCHERT

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