1st Place: Bon Iver
2nd Place: Jim Pullman Band
3rd Place: Daredevil Christopher Wright

Instead of taking these 125 words to tell you what you already know about Justin Vernon (Bon Iver), let’s instead use this space to celebrate the man that has become something of a legend overnight. Are any of us really surprised? When the world turned inside out after, For Emma Forever Ago came out, there was part of us that knew, deep down, this had to happen. Justin’s success hasn’t just brought the world to us, it has brought Eau Claire to the world. Even now we appreciate more and more what we have here, a vibrant and creative group of people making extraordinary music. You needn’t look any farther than the rest of this list to see that Justin’s talent isn’t a singular force in the Chippewa Valley. Jim Pullman and the Daredevil Christopher Wright are both fantastic, and are deserving of the critical press that is only starting to heap upon them. And it is for this reason that we should thank Bon Iver, not just for the music that awakened our hearts, but the cultural phenomenon that opened our eyes. – Ian Jacoby

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