January 19, 1986 |
The Grammy Awards are an annual exhibition of the ills of the record industry. The nominations show that commercial impact is the primary consideration and technical gloss is the only other significant criterion in evaluating recordings. Because the American recording industry is aimed single-mindedly at the teenage buyer, the Grammy nominations stress pop recordings, rock, and country music. Music relegated to the "classical" category is actually many kinds of nonrock music, representing four or more centuries of intellectual enterprise.
January 19, 1988 |
What do Elvis Presley and Chuck Berry, Bob Dylan, the Beatles and the Rolling Stones have in common? None of those legends got their due from the Grammys back when the old-guard reactionaries were running the show for the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. This year's Grammy nominations, by contrast, seem so cool, so sharp, so creditable, I almost can't stand it. Who'd have thought that a shy, sensitive coffeehouse-style folk poet such as Suzanne Vega, or the earthy, tradition- bound Chicano group Los Lobos would have stolen so much thunder from established, mainstream rock stars and popsters?
September 6, 2012 |
ATLANTA - Singer-songwriter Joe South, who penned hits in the 1960s and 1970s like "Games People Play," and "Down in the Boondocks," died Wednesday, his music publisher said. He was 72. South, whose real name was Joseph Souter, died at his home in Buford, Ga., northeast of Atlanta, from natural causes stemming from a heart attack. South was an inductee in the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Georgia Music Hall of Fame. South's song "Down in the Boondocks" was a 1965 hit for singer Billy Joe Royal.
December 9, 2005 |
Classical-music Philadelphians - and visitors who are here so frequently they might as well be - made a decent showing in the nominations. Michael Daugherty's impressionistic triptych, Philadelphia Stories, was nominated for instrumental soloist (with orchestra) in a recording by the Colorado Symphony under Marin Alsop. Veteran Philadelphia composer George Crumb's most famous piece, Ancient Voices of Children, received a new recording on the Bridge label that was nominated for small ensemble performance.
March 10, 1997 |
Keb' Mo' has always been a politely reserved bluesman: It's part of his charm. But at the Theatre of Living Arts on Friday, the Taj Mahal-influenced singer and guitarist seemed not just reserved, but remote. "I haven't played 'Happy Birthday' since I was singing in smoky clubs," the artist responded when a concertgoer shouted out for the tune. "Oh, did I offend you?" he quickly countered, as if suddenly remembering his chosen persona. "Yes," came the unequivocal response. Keb' Mo', whose given name is Kevin Moore, then dutifully complied, even adding, "How old are you?
May 1, 2009 |
Forget the "heartbroken soul" label that Best New Artist Grammy winner Adele advertently pinned on herself early in her career . . . she certainly has. "I used it in an interview once," the 20-year-old Londoner said by phone, adding that it has followed her everywhere. "I'm hopeful that people realize there's another side to my music and to me. " Indeed, fans of the saucy, zaftig, smoky-voiced songstress may be surprised to learn that Adele often ends her concerts with an audience-participation version of Michael Jackson's disco-era "Wanna Be Startin' Something.
February 26, 1992 |
What does it say about the state of pop music when the Grammy for song of the year goes to a tune written in 1951? When the braying Michael Bolton beats one of the planet's great voices, Aaron Neville, in the male pop vocal category? When the wimpiest of rock groups, Van Halen, overcomes Guns N' Roses and AC/DC in the hard-rock performance category? When the sentimental Marc Cohn bests more deserving nominees Boyz II Men and Seal in the new-artist category? Another Grammy night, another collection of embarrassingly out-of-step votes from the 7,000 members of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS)
April 5, 1994 |
Philadelphia is within weeks of landing its own branch of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, the organization that awards the Grammys. NARAS "has all but assured us" that the city will be granted branch status next month, Susan Schulman, executive director of the Philadelphia Music Alliance (PMA), said yesterday. The PMA began its drive to establish a local NARAS chapter in September 1992. Creation of a branch is an interim step in the process of establishing a full-fledged chapter, said Michael Greene, president of NARAS, yesterday.
February 22, 1987 |
"All new-age artists will claim to be 'not really new-age.' " - Musician magazine's "fearless predictions" for 1987 No one likes it, but there it is: new-age. Paul Winter, the saxophonist who's been making mellow for 25 years, is new- age. So's a Swiss harp player by the name of Andreas Vollenweider. And so is Jean-Michel Jarre - French synthesizer whiz and son of film composer Maurice Jarre - even though Jean-Michel's electronic excursions predate the term "new-age. " And so, definitely, is Windham Hill Records, the little company that guitarist William Ackerman built in his Palo Alto, Calif.
February 14, 2005 |
The late, great soul singer Ray Charles dominated the 47th annual Grammy awards last night. Charles, who died at 73 in June and is the subject of the Oscar-nominated biopic Ray, crushed the competition with his posthumously released duets album Genius Loves Company, which took eight awards, including album of the year and record of the year for his duet of "Here We Go Again" with Norah Jones. "I'm going to cry, actually," Jones said, accepting the trophy for record of the year.