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Meanwhile at the Grammys
So the passage of time has brought us up to the 55th Grammy Award ceremony where countless musicians are celebrated for their musical ingenuity. Bands and artists from all genres (or at least the more lucrative genres – I don’t expect the people behind the Grammys spend much time watching the many hurdy gurdy musicians out there) have gathered to perform and celebrate everything that makes music worth listening to. Whether or not you think they do a good job at representing that (as some were vocal enough to express) is a whole different discussion though, one we will stave off from and just talk about who made the biggest impact.
First and foremost The Black Keys were probably the big attention grabbers of the evening. Hailing from Akron, Ohio this simple guitarist/drummer duo walked away with four Grammy awards for the Best Rock Song, Best Rock Album, Producer of the Year (Non-Classical), and Best Rock Performance. On top of that they were also nominated for Album of the Year and Record of the Year which were lost to Mumford & Sons and Gotye respectively. This further proves my theory that accolades like this come to people from Ohio as a result to all the hard work people put into getting out of Ohio.
The Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance was awarded to Halestorm, who got their first Grammy for their song “Love Bites (So Do I)”, who defied all laws of physics by beating Iron Maiden’s “Blood Brothers”, Anthrax’s “I’m Alive”, Lamb of God’s “Ghost Walking”, and Megadeath’s “Whose Life (Is It Anyways?)”. And Marilyn Manson was nominated as well for “No Reflection”.
Bonnie Raitt, who has a history of doing particularly well at the Grammys, added another award to her collection for Best Americana Album thanks to her album Slipstream. This was her tenth Grammy and her first since 1997, over fifteen years later. Her immediate competition included Mumford & Sons’ Babel, The Lumineers’ self-titled album The Lumineers, The Avett Brothers’ The Carpenter, and John Fullbright’s From the Ground Up.
The ever active Paul McCartney was awarded the Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album for Kisses on the Bottom which featured guitars from Eric Clapton. Evidently the traditional pop category isn’t as competitive as only two other nominees – Michael Buble and Carole King – were in the running.
Pat Metheny’s Unity Band trounced the competition for the Best Jazz Instrumental Album. Runner ups included Chick Corea, Eddie Gomez, & Paul Motian’s Further Explorations, Chick Corea & Gary Burton’s Hot House, Kenny Garrett’s Seeds from the Underground, and Ahmad Jamal’s Blue Moon.
Dr. John slipped the Best Blues Album under the radar with Locked Down, against Shemekia Copeland, Ruthie Foster, Heritage Blues Orchestra, and Joan Osborne. Best Bluegrass Album went to Steep Canyon Rangers for Nobody Knows You. The other nominees included Dailey & Vincent, The Grascals, Noam Pikelny, and Special Consensus.
In closing Jimmy Cliff’s Rebirth landed the Best Reggae Album, Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross snatched the Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media with the soundtrack to The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, and The Beach Boys’ The Smile Sessions box set won the Best Historical Album.