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UBL, Highway 55 win Georgia Music Awards

Albany hip-hop group Unbreakable Bloodline received the Georgia Music Award for Hip-Hop Group of the Year.

Albany hip-hop group Unbreakable Bloodline received the Georgia Music Award for Hip-Hop Group of the Year.

ATLANTA -- A pair of Southwest Georgia groups emerged as the best bands in the state at the recent Georgia Music Awards at the Buckhead Theatre here.

The Albany hip-hop collective Unbreakable Bloodline received the Georgia Award for Hip-Hop Group of the Year, while Dawson/Leesburg-based Highway 55 was named Country Group of the Year.

The ceremony marked the second year of the Georgia Music Awards.

"It really took a little while for this to sink in," UBL drummer Chad Basko said Monday. "You get the award, they shuffle you out and suddenly you find yourself backstage just looking around. Then there are photographs and interviews. ... It was a whirlwind.

"But the last couple of days we've had an opportunity to think about it, to think about where we are as a band. We've worked hard to get here. The ball's rolling pretty well for us right now."

The GMA comes on the heels of the successful release of Unbreakable Bloodline's self-titled debut album. The band's work is currently available on iTunes, Spotify, Google and will soon move into rotation on Pandora Radio.

Winning awards is nothing new for Highway 55: vocalist Cody Smith, guitarists Skyler McCrary and Grover Mims, bassist Paul Harrell and drummer Jason Plowden. The group, which is currently working on its second album, was named Band of the Year at last year's Georgia Country Music Awards as well.

Next for UBL is the Music in Our Veins benefit concert for the Red Cross at the Crisp County Middle School Auditorium Saturday. The band will also play at the city of Albany's Independence Day celebration at the Exchange Club Fairgrounds.

"May was a huge month for us, and now (with the Georgia Music Award) we have even more momentum," Basko said.