Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Much Ado About Grammys

We've been meaning to return to an annual custom once practiced here at mwbh, that of reviewing the Gramophone Awards (as they were once known), or at least those parts of it that interested us. This writer doesn't watch it on television, as it's little more than a skank-fest, and the categories of genuine interest are mostly never televised. The four categories that are not limited to genre (Album of the Year, Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best New Artist) are a matter of some curiosity, though.

Going to the site of the nominees with the winners highlighted (click here), we see that "Need You Now" by Lady Antebellum put country music in the spotlight for Record and Song of the Year, and Arcade Fire won for Album of the Year (album, record, is there a difference?). Also, a jazz artist won best new artist for the first time, in the person of bassist Esperanza Spalding. On top of all that, Cee Lo Green didn't win in these categories for "F*** You" -- a hopeful sign for the world as we know it. (Oh, and Marty Stuart won for Best Country Instrumental Performance for "Hummingbyrd." Nice.)

The bad news is, there were fewer than ten nominees for Best Regional Mexican Album, so there were no awards in that category. Maybe next year ...

And now, two bits of good news.

Last week, we mentioned that the Carolina Chocolate Drops were nominated for Best Traditional Folk Album. Well, they got it, for their premiere album on the Nonesuch label, "Genuine Negro Jig." We couldn't be more proud if we knew them personally (which we don't -- yet). Best Contemporary Folk Album went to some band I never heard of, Ray LaMontague and the Pariah Dogs, for "God Willin' & The Creek Don't Rise" -- the band name has a nice ring to it; you'd think they'd do better than a cliche album title. Could be really good though, winning a Grammy and all. Best Hawaiian Album went to Tia Carrere for "Huana Ke Aloha." (Some of you may remember her. Oh yeah ...)

Even better is the winner of the Best Zydeco Or Cajun Music Album. Chubby Carrier and the Bayou Swamp Band took the honors for their record on the Swampadelic label, "Zydeco Junkie." Chubby is the son of Roy Carrier, whose passing was honored here last May. Another member of that family, Troy Carrier, goes under the name of Dikki Du, who with his Zydeco Krewe, has let yours truly sit in more than once back in the day. I sure do miss those guys.

But for now, that's all the news that fits.

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