WBEZ | Grammys http://www.wbez.org/tags/grammys Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Do the Grammys have a race problem? http://www.wbez.org/blogs/nico-lang/2013-02/do-grammys-have-race-problem-105501 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/613f2ba412492a05290f6a7067008fd6.jpg" style="width: 350px; height: 226px; float: right;" title="(Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)" />If you ever want to win your Grammy pool, there&rsquo;s a great rule of thumb for striking gold. To predict the winner in any category on &ldquo;music&rsquo;s biggest night,&rdquo; choose the whitest act. This shortcut would have easily predicted previous winners in the Best Album category like the Dixie Chicks, Taylor Swift and Norah Jones. It even helps explain how Herbie Hancock shocked the recording industry by winning Album of the Year in 2008. The influential pianist, composer, bandleader and jazz icon was rewarded for covering some of Joni Mitchell&rsquo;s most beloved songs, as his album paid tribute to her work. He wasn&rsquo;t white, but what&rsquo;s whiter than Joni Mitchell?</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><em>River: The Joni Letters also </em>featured collaborations with Norah Jones and Leonard Cohen, similar to 2005&rsquo;s much-lauded <em>Genius Loves Company</em>. Ray Charles finally hit Grammy pay dirt by making a duets album that featured Jones, Diana Krall, James Taylor, Van Morrison and Michael McDonald, all of whom are exceedingly Grammy friendly. A soul legend got Grammys for hanging out with white folks.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">On Grammy night, a lot of people both expected and wanted Frank Ocean to walk away with arms full of Grammys&mdash;like Adele and Norah Jones. In addition to creating what is widely regarded as the best album of 2012 (and a soon-to-be contender for record of the decade), Ocean was a media darling last year. Frank Ocean&rsquo;s very public coming out was a landmark moment in a music industry unreceptive to change, and the critical and commercial success of <em>Channel Orange </em>proved that he was a music force to be reckoned with. Not only is Ocean our first successful queer rapper or R&amp;B performer, he&rsquo;s an icon to millions of people who know they don&rsquo;t have to sacrifice their identity for fame.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">If this were the Oscars&mdash;where winning is all about running a great campaign and it being &ldquo;your year&rdquo;&mdash;Ocean would have had that on lock. Ben Affleck and <em>Argo</em> are about to win for the same reason that&nbsp;Helen Mirren won for <em>The Queen</em> and Kate Winslet finally got her Oscar for <em>The Reader</em>. It was considered their time.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">But that&rsquo;s not how the Grammys work. Other than Adele, who was a media force to be reckoned with at last year&rsquo;s Grammys, there was nothing &ldquo;of the moment&rdquo; or inevitable about wins for Kings of Leon or Lady Antebellum. In the case of the latter, it was one of the least acclaimed songs in the category and arguably the least successful. The &ldquo;it&rsquo;s time&rdquo; win would have gone to Eminem, whose &ldquo;Love the Way You Lie&rdquo; was a huge smash on an acclaimed album. When Robert Plant and Allison Krauss won Record of the Year in 2009, they won for the only song in the category that wasn&rsquo;t a hit. Robert Plant hasn&#39;t been relevant for decaides, and Krauss is the winning-est woman in Grammy history. She hardly needed the award.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Although U2&rsquo;s 2001 win in the same category for &ldquo;Beautiful Day&rdquo; is understandable, as it was a critical and commercial hit, their repeat win the following year for &ldquo;Walk On&rdquo; makes no sense. The tune never reached the Hot 100 and was nominated against both Alicia Keys&rsquo; &ldquo;Fallin&rsquo;&rdquo; and Outkast&rsquo;s &ldquo;Ms. Jackson.&rdquo; The latter tune won that year&rsquo;s Pazz and Jop poll, the most prestigious music critics&rsquo; list in the country, and the former was the second-biggest song of the year. Both of these tunes had that magic combination of critical praise and deafening popularity and would go onto become classics. Even a lot of diehard U2 fans forget &ldquo;Walk On&rdquo; was a thing. Great band, meh song.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">The Grammys doubled down on the race criticism this year by not nominating that many people of color in the major categories at all. Frank Ocean and Miguel got nods in the major categories, but the rest of the nominations went to traditional Grammy fare like The Black Keys, Mumford and Sons, fun., Kelly Clarkson, and Taylor Swift, none of which would offend your grandmother.&nbsp; Janelle Monae got a nod for being in two seconds of &quot;We Are Young.&quot; Such are the Grammys way.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Team Frank Ocean expected the overcrowding of whiteness to make way for his win, as the white people might cancel each other out. However, when wins for fun. and Gotye were called out, I wasn&rsquo;t surprised. Both songs were extraordinarily popular on top of being good, and Gotye might never be up there again, as that song&rsquo;s hyper-success was a miracle to begin with. This would be their only chance to honor him.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">But Mumford and Sons&rsquo; win was the clincher for me that the Grammys have a problem they need to kick. The Grammys are addicted to white people.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">To put it in context, Mumford and Sons got Album of the Year for <em>Babel</em>, the follow-up to their acclaimed <em>Sigh No More</em>. <em>Sigh No More </em>was one of the biggest albums of last year, and if not for Adele winning, it would have been a shoo-in for an award. But the band&rsquo;s sophomore record was largely seen as a disappointment and garnered none of the original&rsquo;s genre-reigniting buzz. Mumford and Sons knew a lot of people loved <em>Sigh No More</em>, so they gave them that record again. It was a shrewd move and hardly worth placing into the history books.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Unless you place the album&rsquo;s win in the context of race, their win makes no sense. Although the album was the fourth-biggest of the year, it sold far fewer copies than its predecessor and was the second worst-reviewed release in the category. Fun.&rsquo;s <em>Some Nights</em> wasn&rsquo;t as well-received (by a slight margin), but it spawned two huge singles off the record, whereas &ldquo;I Will Wait&rdquo; struggled to gain a foothold on the radio. <em>Channel Orange</em> and <em>El Camino</em> both were commercially successful, while spawning moderate hits. I could go on, but it&rsquo;s just shooting fish in a racist barrel.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Before the internet gets upset that I dared to call the nation&rsquo;s highest music honor racist, I&rsquo;m not the first one to suggest that the Grammys have some <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/michal-shapiro/are-the-grammys-racist_b_890775.html">huge issues</a> in reflecting the <a href="http://www.policymic.com/articles/25763/are-the-grammys-racist-in-short-yes">eclectic nature</a> of our era. The Grammys&rsquo; race problems are indicative of an awards show that&rsquo;s increasingly out of touch with the industry it caters to, one that looks at the evolving times and reacts by retreating further into its shell. It wasn&rsquo;t always this way. The 70s saw<em> three </em>Album of the Year wins for Stevie Wonder, and the category honored Quincy Jones, Natalie Cole, Whitney Houston and Lauryn Hill in the 90s.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Contrast that with today, where the last time non-white people won Album of the Year (without assists from a bunch of white people) is 2004, when Outkast won&mdash;while being snubbed for both Song and Record for the year&rsquo;s most beloved song. (Remember what a big deal &ldquo;Hey Ya!&rdquo; was? 2004 was a fun year.) Instead, those awards went to Coldplay for &ldquo;Clocks&rdquo; and Luther Vandross and Richard Marx for &ldquo;Dance with My Father.&rdquo; Once again, it&rsquo;s a lot easier to give black people (Vandross) things when white people (Marx) get to share the glory. It&rsquo;s like <em>The Help</em>, but for music.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Quick quiz: Do you know how many rap or hip-hop artists have ever won Song or Record of the Year at the Grammys? None, in the history of the show.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">The bigger issue is that while the problem continues to intensify, nothing ever changes and the show continues to dodge accountability. No matter how often the Grammys get called out for being color challenged, they refuse to rectify the problem&mdash;or admit they even have one. While ostensibly celebrating the music industry, they continue to laud what is safe, palatable and white&mdash;letting Alicia Keys, Bruno Mars, Miguel and Wiz Khalifa peform, to make people of color feel &ldquo;included&rdquo; in the show. Too bad that a lot of their categories get left off the air or cut for being too &quot;<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/michal-shapiro/are-the-grammys-racist_b_890775.html">ethnic</a>.&quot;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">At the Grammys, it&rsquo;s not enough to have faces of color onscreen&mdash;and let them accept the smaller category awards off. The problem is bigger than Frank Ocean. It&rsquo;s bigger than Alicia Keys or Nas or Kendrick Lamar or the other black voices that go home unrewarded every year. We have to let them win every once in a while, or the music industry&rsquo;s will continue to give America a show no one wants. Instead of celebrating whiteness, we have to start celebrating change.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><em>Need somone to pine over Frank Ocean with? Follow Nico on Twitter @<a href="http://www.twitter.com/nico_lang">Nico_Lang</a> or <a href="http://www.facebook.com/NicoRLang">Facebook</a>. </em><em>Nico Lang blogs about LGBTQ life in Chicago for WBEZ.org.</em></div></p> Wed, 13 Feb 2013 05:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/nico-lang/2013-02/do-grammys-have-race-problem-105501 Support your local music http://www.wbez.org/blogs/leah-pickett/2013-02/support-your-local-music-105451 <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Summer_Girlfriends_Drinks.jpg" title="Left to right: Nicole, Nikita, Caitlin, Sara and Kristin of the Chicago band Summer Girlfriends. (Dave Rentauskas Photography/Rentauskas.com)" /></p><div class="image-insert-image ">Hate-watching the Grammys is an annual tradition for this pop culture nerd; however, the majority of last night&#39;s <a href="http://gawker.com/5983160/the-grammy-awards-dumbest-decisions-of-the-past-30-years" target="_blank">sham of an award show</a>&nbsp;was so blatantly awful that I&nbsp;almost didn&#39;t make it to the end. In years past, I&#39;ve reveled in the sheer camp of Nicki Minaj <a href="http://theybf.com/2012/02/13/video-nicki-minaj-levitates-exorcizes-for-roman-holiday-grammy-performance" target="_blank">levitating like a demon</a> or Lady Gaga <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/13/lady-gaga-egg-grammy-arrival_n_822625.html" target="_blank">bursting out of an egg</a>. This year, I groaned aloud at several key moments (&quot;We Are Young&quot; winning Best Song, Mumford and Sons&#39; <em>Babel </em>winning Best Album, that god-awful <a href="http://www.mediaite.com/tv/bob-marley-tribute-at-grammy-awards-fails-to-pay-tribute-to-bob-marley/" target="_blank">Bob Marley tribute</a>&nbsp;wasting 10 minutes of my life) and did not find pleasure in them at all.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Then, I realized: why are Chicagoans sitting at home and live-tweeting <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/10/taylor-swift-grammys-performance_n_2648925.html?utm_hp_ref=entertainment" target="_blank">obnoxious performances</a>&nbsp;on television when they could just walk down the street to&nbsp;<a href="http://yourtownship.tumblr.com" target="_blank">Township</a>, <a href="http://www.schubas.com" target="_blank">Schubas</a>, or <a href="http://subt.net" target="_blank">Subterranean</a>&nbsp;and see a great live band right in their neighborhood?</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Chicago has a thriving local music scene with long list of notable alumni (Wilco, Andrew Bird, Kanye West, the Lawrence Arms, White Mystery, the Smith Westerns, Common and the Smashing Pumpkins all got their start here), so chances are good that the show you saw for free at the<a href="http://www.emptybottle.com"> Empty Bottle</a> on Monday night could become one of those life-changing experiences you tell your grandchildren about one day.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Local music blog&nbsp;<a href="http://loudlooppress.com">Loud Loop Press</a>&nbsp;just released their list of&nbsp;<a href="http://loudlooppress.com/features/13-chicago-bands-to-watch-in-2013/" target="_blank">13 Bands to Watch</a>&nbsp;in 2013, an impressive roster of Chicago talent that&nbsp;immediately sent a ripple of show-going excitement through my friendship circle: &quot;You guys, we <em>need</em> to see more local bands this year!&quot; However, a number of other buzzworthy artists that didn&#39;t make the cut (like the contemporary classic rockers of&nbsp;<a href="http://vintagebluemusic.com" target="_blank">Vintage Blue</a>, the hypnotic brass ensemble of <a href="http://www.hypnoticbrassensemble.com/music/view/kelan-philip-cohran-the-hypnotic-brass-ensemble" target="_blank">Kelan Philip Cohran</a>&nbsp;and underground hip-hop quartet&nbsp;<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3EDfeDA01jc" target="_blank">Typical Cats</a>)&nbsp;still deserve some spotlight.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Ergo, I present my own list of favorites: a rousing local mix of pop, punk, rap, soul, garage rock, indie folk and groovy psychedelia:&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Summer-Girlfriends-Shockwaves-album-445x445.jpg" style="height: 200px; width: 200px; float: left; " title="" /></div></div><div class="image-insert-image "><span style="font-size:18px;"><u><strong>Summer Girlfriends</strong></u></span></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&quot;Indie-Pop, Kitten-Core&quot;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Label</strong>: Addenda Records</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Breakthrough</strong>: The super-fun debut LP <em>Shockwaves</em> (June 2012) and this&nbsp;<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I5CNLT1dIR4">Goth Beach Party</a>&nbsp;music video.</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>What&#39;s next</strong>: A SXSW send-off party&nbsp;at the Hideout on March 9, followed by a <a href="http://www.facebook.com/events/485163344853524/" target="_blank">Spring Tour</a>! (<a href="http://summergirlfriends.bandcamp.com" target="_blank">summergirlfriends.bandcamp.com</a>)</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Chance the Rapper- 10 Day.jpg" style="float: left; " title="" /></div></div><div class="image-insert-image "><span style="font-size:18px;"><u><strong>Chance the Rapper</strong></u></span></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&quot;A 19-year-old rap master from Chicago&quot;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Label</strong>: Unsigned/Independent</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Breakthrough</strong>: The debut mixtape <em>10 Day</em>, a title inspired by Chance&#39;s 10-day school suspension from Jones College Prep (April 2012).</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>What&#39;s next</strong>: Touring college campuses with <a href="http://www.facebook.com/kidsthesedaysband?fref=ts" target="_blank">Kids These Days</a> during the heart of March Madness. (<a href="http://facebook.com/chancetherapper" target="_blank">facebook.com/chancetherapper</a>)</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/outer minds- behind the mirror.jpg" style="float: left; " title="" /></div></div><div class="image-insert-image "><span style="font-size:18px;"><u><b>Outer Minds</b></u></span></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&quot;We are the children of the forest gods&quot;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Label</strong>: Southpaw, HoZac Records</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Breakthrough</strong>: A sprightly self-titled debut (March 2012), followed by the darker psychedelics of sophomore LP <em>Behind the Mirror&nbsp;</em>(November 2012).</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>What&#39;s next</strong>: Playing the Hideout on March 9 with Summer Girlfriends and <a href="http://www.hideoutchicago.com/event/221405-sxsw-send-off-party-chicago/" target="_blank">9 other Chicago bands</a>. (<a href="http://outerminds.bandcamp.com" target="_blank">outerminds.bandcamp.com</a>)</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/cameron McGill- Gallows Etiquette.jpg" style="float: left; " title="" /></div></div><div class="image-insert-image "><span style="font-size:18px;"><u><b>Cameron McGill&nbsp;</b></u></span></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&quot;Band Interests: Morrissey&quot;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Label</strong>: Post-Important</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Breakthrough</strong>: McGill has been a staple of the Chicago music scene for over a decade, but his fifth record&nbsp;<em>Is A Beast</em> (April 2011) was also his first to utilize a full backing band, What Army.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>What&#39;s next</strong>:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/cameronmcgill?utm_campaign=project3805&amp;utm_medium=project_badge&amp;utm_source=unknown" target="_blank">Gallows Etiquette</a>, which has already received 100 pledges in support of a Spring 2013 release. (<a href="http://cameronmcgill.com" target="_blank">cameronmcgill.com</a>)</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div></div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/The Orwells.jpg" style="height: 200px; width: 200px; float: left; " title="" /></div></div><div class="image-insert-image "><span style="font-size:18px;"><u><b>The Orwells</b></u></span></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&quot;Flower Punk&quot;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Label</strong>: Autumn Tone Records</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Breakthrough</strong>: The debut LP<em> Remember When</em> (August 2012) premiered to commercial and critical <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Orwells">acclaim</a> before the band&#39;s senior year of high school.</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>What&#39;s next</strong>: An&nbsp;<a href="http://klyam.com/2013/01/25/the-orwells-east-coast-tour-dates-t-t-the-bears-227/" target="_blank">East Coast tour</a>, followed by the <a href="http://shakykneesfestival.com">Shaky Knees Music Festival</a> in Atlanta on May 4. (<a href="http://facebook.com/theorwellsband">facebook.com/theorwellsband</a>)</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Radar Eyes- Self Titld.jpg" style="float: left; " title="" /></div></div><div class="image-insert-image "><span style="font-size:18px;"><u><strong>Radar Eyes</strong></u></span></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&quot;Garage/Post-Punk/Psychedelic&quot;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Label</strong>: PlusTapes, HoZac Records</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Breakthrough</strong>: Their infectious self-titled LP (February 2012) was recently selected by&nbsp;<a href="http://blog.allmusic.com/2013/01/18/allmusic-playlist-near-misses-of-2012/" target="_blank">AllMusic Blog </a>as one of the top albums of 2012 to be snubbed on most year-end lists.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>What&#39;s next</strong>: Shows scheduled for <a href="https://www.facebook.com/events/161884517292575/" target="_blank">The Burlington</a> on February 15 and the <a href="http://www.facebook.com/events/538961992790328/">Empty Bottle</a> on April 20. (<a href="http://radareyes.bandcamp.com">radareyes.bandcamp.com</a>)</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/cyls_041_dowsing-_it_s_still_pretty_terrible.jpg" style="float: left; " title="" /></div></div><div class="image-insert-image "><span style="font-size:18px;"><u><strong>Dowsing</strong></u></span></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&quot;Feel good sad jams&quot;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Label</strong>: Count Your Lucky Stars&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Breakthrough</strong>: Their totally awesome first full length record <em>It&#39;s Still Pretty Terrible&nbsp;</em>(July 2012).</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>What&#39;s next</strong>: Recording <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Dowsingband?fref=ts">a new LP</a> and playing the <a href="http://www.facebook.com/events/363152607126305/">DAAC</a><a href="http://www.facebook.com/events/363152607126305/" target="_blank"> </a>in Grand Rapids, Mich. on February 17. (<a href="http://dowsing.bandcamp.com" target="_blank">dowsing.bandcamp.com</a>)</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Archie Powell- Great Ideas in Action.jpg" style="float: left; " title="" /></div></div><div class="image-insert-image "><u><span style="font-size:18px;"><b>Archie Powell &amp; the Exports</b></span></u></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&quot;Rock/Alternative/Pop&quot;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Label</strong>: Good Land Records</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Breakthrough</strong>: The band&#39;s sophomore full length,&nbsp;<em>Great Ideas in Action</em> (May 2012), backed by a series of wonderfully inventive&nbsp;<a href="http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLD01AEF091EA5CCD9" target="_blank">music videos</a>.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>What&#39;s next</strong>: Many more local shows to come! (<a href="http://archiepowell.com" target="_blank">archiepowell.com</a>)</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div></p> Mon, 11 Feb 2013 08:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/leah-pickett/2013-02/support-your-local-music-105451 Chicago's Grammy nominees http://www.wbez.org/blog/jim-derogatis/chicagos-grammy-nominees <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/grammyschicago.png" alt="" /><p><p style="text-align: center;"><img width="265" height="198" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2010-December/2010-12-02/image003.png" alt="" title="" /></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>As promised last night, here is the list of nominees from Chicago and the surrounding area, according to the Midwest office of the Recording Academy.</p><p>Aaron Sledge: Best Contemporary R&amp;B Gospel Album</p> <p>Buddy Guy: Best Contemporary Blues Album</p> <p>Chicago Symphony Chorus:&nbsp; Best Classical Album; Best Choral Performance</p> <p>Chicago Symphony Orchestra:&nbsp; Best Classical Album; Best Orchestral Performance; Best Choral Performance</p> <p>Common:&nbsp; Best Rap/Sung Collaboration</p> <p>Freddy Cole: Best Jazz Vocal Album</p> <p>Gretchen Wilson (Pocahontas, IL):&nbsp;Best Female Country Vocal Performance; Best Country Song</p> <p>Justin Roberts:&nbsp; Best Musical Album For Children</p> <p>Kanye West:&nbsp; Best Rap Solo Performance</p> <p>Ken Shipley (Numero Group):&nbsp; Best Boxed Or Special Limited Edition Package</p> <p>Lalah Hathaway:&nbsp; Best Gospel Performance; Best Gospel Song</p> <p>Mavis Staples: Best Americana Album</p> <p>Pinetop Perkins: Best Traditional Blues Album</p> <p>Riccardo Muti: Best Classical Album; Best Choral Performance</p> <p>R. Kelly: Best Traditional R&amp;B Vocal Performance; Best Contemporary R&amp;B Album</p> <p>Rob Sevier: Best Boxed Or Special Limited Edition Package</p> <p>Tom Lunt: Best Boxed Or Special Limited Edition Package</p> <p>VaShawn Mitchell: Best Gospel Performance; Best Contemporary R&amp;B Gospel Album</p> <p>Willie &ldquo;Big Eyes&rdquo; Smith: Best Traditional Blues Album; Best Contemporary Blues Album</p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Thu, 02 Dec 2010 22:01:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blog/jim-derogatis/chicagos-grammy-nominees Eminem gets 10 nods 10 years after he mattered (and other dubious wonders in the 2010 Grammy nominations) http://www.wbez.org/blog/jim-derogatis/eminem-gets-10-nods-10-years-after-he-mattered-and-other-dubious-wonders-2010-gra <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/eminem grammy.jpg" alt="" /><p><p style="text-align: center;"><img height="400" width="522" title="" alt="" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2010-December/2010-12-01/eminem grammy.jpg" /></p><p>&nbsp;With their stated mission &ldquo;to honor artistic achievement... without regard to album sales or chart position&rdquo; once again more of an ideal than a reality, Grammy sponsors the Recording Academy have announced the nominees for the 53rd annual awards, the most prestigious if chronically misguided in the music industry.</p><p>Topping the list of multiple nominees with a number that puts him among such Grammy favorites as Carlos Santana, Eric Clapton, and Bonnie Raitt&mdash;even though his last album &ldquo;Recovery&rdquo; <a href="../../../../../jderogatis/2010/06/album-review-eminem-recovery/28132">was one of the most mediocre of his controversial but platinum-selling career</a>&mdash;Eminem garnered 10 nods, including the most prestigious, album of the year, as well as two more of the &ldquo;big four&rdquo; prizes, record and song of the year (for &ldquo;Love the Way You Lie&rdquo; featuring Rihanna).</p> <p>The rest of the album of the year contenders are divided between worthy contenders&mdash;orchestral-popsters Arcade Fire (for &ldquo;The Suburbs&rdquo;) and pop phenom Lady Gaga (for &ldquo;The Fame Monster&rdquo;)&mdash;and sheer commercial pabulum (country-pop merchants Lady Antebellum for &ldquo;Need You Now&rdquo; and Katy Perry for &ldquo;Teenage Dream&rdquo;).</p> <p>Trailing Marshall Mathers with seven nominations is pop producer, singer, and songwriter Bruno Mars. Hip-hop CEO Jay-Z and the aforementioned Ladies, Antebellum and Gaga, each claimed six Grammy nods, while five nominations apiece went to the venerable guitar hero Jeff Beck, B.O.B (a.k.a. rapper Bobby Ray Simmons), easy-listening soul man John Legend, rising pop/R&amp;B star Philip Lawrence, and classical music producer David Frost.</p> <p>Completing the roster for record of the year (which is awarded to the artist and producer) along with Eminem are B.o.B featuring Bruno Mars (&ldquo;Nothin&rsquo; On You&rdquo;), the indomitable Cee Lo Green (&ldquo;F*** You&rdquo;), Jay-Z and Alicia Keys (&ldquo;Empire State Of Mind&rdquo;), and Lady Antebellum (&ldquo;Need You Now&rdquo;).</p> <p>And joining Slim Shady in competition for song of the year (which is awarded to the songwriter) are Ray LaMontagne (&ldquo;Beg Steal Or Borrow&rdquo;), Cee Lo with &ldquo;F*** You&rdquo; again, tunesmiths Tom Douglas and Allen Shamblin, who wrote &ldquo;The House That Built Me&rdquo; for Miranda Lambert, Dave Haywood, Josh Kear, Charles Kelley, and Hillary Scott, who wrote &ldquo;Need You Now&rdquo; for Lady Antebellum.</p> <p>Then, of course, there is the always laughable best new artist prize, whose contenders this year are bad-haircut pop hearthrob Justin Bieber, hip-popper Drake, Florence &amp; the Machine, Mumford &amp; Sons, and Esperanza Spalding.</p> <p>The Chicago chapter of the Recording Academy will release its tally of local artists honored with nominations later today, and we&rsquo;ll duly post it. But a quick scan of the complete list indicates a real shortage of hometown talent, save for the dubious inclusion of fading but acquitted R&amp;B superstar R. Kelly, who was nominated for best contemporary R&amp;B album (&ldquo;Untitled&rdquo;) and best traditional R&amp;B vocal performance, and one minor nomination each for the American treasure Mavis Staples and wayward hip-hop hero Common.</p> <p>The full list of nominees in all of the 7,894 categories (give or take) <a href="http://www.grammy.com/nominees">can be found online here.</a> Meanwhile, a look at some of the other key categories follows below. And the golden gramophones themselves will be given out on Feb. 13 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles during a ceremony televed on CBS and theoretically lasting 3&frac12; hours, though it will of course feel three times as long.</p> <p><strong>Best pop performance by a duo or group with vocals</strong>: &ldquo;Don&rsquo;t Stop Believin&rsquo; (Regionals Version)&rdquo; &mdash; the cast of &ldquo;Glee&rdquo;; &ldquo;Misery&rdquo; &mdash; Maroon 5; &ldquo;The Only Exception&rdquo; &mdash; Paramore; &ldquo;Babyfather&rdquo; &mdash; Sade; &ldquo;Hey, Soul Sister (Live)&rdquo; &mdash; Train.</p> <p><strong>Best pop collaboration with vocals</strong>: &ldquo;Airplanes II&rdquo; &mdash; B.o.B, Eminem &amp; Hayley Williams; &ldquo;Imagine&rdquo; &mdash; Herbie Hancock, Pink, India.Arie, Seal, Konono No. 1, Jeff Beck &amp; Oumou Sangare; &ldquo;If It Wasn&rsquo;t For Bad&rdquo; &mdash; Elton John &amp; Leon Russell; &ldquo;Telephone&rdquo; &mdash; Lady Gaga &amp; Beyoncé; California Gurls&rdquo; &mdash; Katy Perry &amp; Snoop Dogg.</p> <p><strong>Best dance recording</strong>: &ldquo;Rocket&rdquo; &mdash; Goldfrapp; &ldquo;In For The Kill&rdquo; &mdash; La Roux; &ldquo;Dance In The Dark&rdquo; &mdash; Lady Gaga; &ldquo;Only Girl (In The World)&rdquo; &mdash; Rihanna; &ldquo;Dancing On My Own&rdquo; &mdash; Robyn.</p> <p><strong>Best rock performance by a duo or group with vocals</strong>: &ldquo;Ready To Start&rdquo; &mdash; Arcade Fire; &ldquo;I Put A Spell On You&rdquo; &mdash; Jeff Beck &amp; Joss Stone; &ldquo;Tighten Up&rdquo; &mdash; the Black Keys; &ldquo;Radioactive&rdquo; &mdash; Kings Of Leon; &ldquo;Resistance&rdquo; &mdash; Muse.</p> <p><strong>Best hard rock performance</strong>: &ldquo;A Looking In View&rdquo; &mdash; Alice In Chains; &ldquo;Let Me Hear You Scream&rdquo; &mdash; Ozzy Osbourne; &ldquo;Black Rain&rdquo; &mdash; Soundgarden; &ldquo;Between the Lines&rdquo; &mdash; Stone Temple Pilots; &ldquo;New Fang&rdquo; &mdash; Them Crooked Vultures.</p> <p><strong>Best rock song</strong>: &ldquo;Angry World&rdquo; &mdash; Neil Young; &ldquo;Little Lion Man&rdquo; &mdash; Mumford &amp; Sons; &ldquo;Radioactive&rdquo; &mdash; Kings Of Leon; &ldquo;Resistance&rdquo; &mdash; Muse; &ldquo;Tighten Up&rdquo; &mdash; the Black Keys.</p> <p><strong>Best alternative music album</strong>: &ldquo;The Suburbs&rdquo; &mdash; Arcade Fire; &ldquo;Infinite Arms&rdquo; &mdash; Band Of Horses; &ldquo;Brothers&rdquo; &mdash; the Black Keys; &ldquo;Broken Bells&rdquo; &mdash; Broken Bells; &ldquo;Contra&rdquo; &mdash; Vampire Weekend.</p> <p><strong>Best R&amp;B performance by a duo or group with vocals</strong>: &ldquo;Take My Time&rdquo; &mdash; Chris Brown &amp; Tank; &ldquo;Love&rdquo; &mdash; Chuck Brown, Jill Scott &amp; Marcus Miller; &ldquo;You&rsquo;ve Got A Friend&rdquo; &mdash; Ronald Isley &amp; Aretha Franklin; &ldquo;Shine&rdquo; &mdash; John Legend &amp; the Roots; &ldquo;Soldier Of Love&rdquo; &mdash; Sade.</p> <p><strong>Best contemporary R&amp;B album</strong>: &ldquo;Graffiti&rdquo; &mdash; Chris Brown; &ldquo;Untitled&rdquo; &mdash; R. Kelly; &ldquo;Transition&rdquo; &mdash; Ryan Leslie; &ldquo;The ArchAndroid&rdquo; &mdash; Janelle Monáe; &ldquo;Raymond V Raymond&rdquo; &mdash; Usher.</p> <p><strong>Best rap/sung collaboration</strong>: &ldquo;Nothin&rsquo; On You&rdquo; &mdash; B.o.B featuring Bruno Mars; &ldquo;Deuces&rdquo; &mdash; Chris Brown, Tyga &amp; Kevin McCall; &ldquo;Love the Way You Lie&rdquo; &mdash; Eminem &amp; Rihanna; &ldquo;Empire State Of Mind&rdquo; &mdash; Jay-Z &amp; Alicia Keys; &ldquo;Wake Up! Everybody&rdquo; &mdash; John Legend, the Roots, Melanie Fiona &amp; Common.</p> <p><strong>Best rap album</strong>: &ldquo;The Adventures of Bobby Ray&rdquo; &mdash; B.o.B; &ldquo;Thank Me Later&rdquo; &mdash; Drake; &ldquo;Recovery&rdquo; &mdash; Eminem; &ldquo;The Blueprint 3&rdquo; &mdash; Jay-Z; &ldquo;How I Got Over&rdquo; &mdash; the Roots.</p> <p><strong>Best country song</strong>: &ldquo;The Breath You Take&rdquo; &mdash;George Strait; &ldquo;Free&rdquo; &mdash; Zac Brown Band; &ldquo;The House That Built Me&rdquo; Miranda Lambert; &ldquo;I&rsquo;d Love to be Your Last&rdquo; &mdash;Gretchen Wilson; &ldquo;If I Die Young&rdquo; &mdash;The Band Perry; &ldquo;Need You Now&rdquo; &mdash;Lady Antebellum.</p> <p><strong>Best country album</strong>: &ldquo;Up On the Ridge&rdquo; &mdash; Dierks Bentley; &ldquo;You Get What You Give&rdquo; &mdash; Zac Brown Band; &ldquo;The Guitar Song&rdquo; &mdash; Jamey Johnson; &ldquo;Need You Now&rdquo; &mdash; Lady Antebellum; &ldquo;Revolution&rdquo; &mdash; Miranda Lambert.</p> <p><strong>Best Americana album</strong>: &ldquo;The List&rdquo; &mdash; Rosanne Cash; &ldquo;Tin Can Trust&rdquo; &mdash; Los Lobos; &ldquo;Country Music&rdquo; &mdash; Willie Nelson; &ldquo;Band Of Joy&rdquo; &mdash; Robert Plant; &ldquo;You Are Not Alone&rdquo; &mdash; Mavis Staples.</p> <p><strong>Best traditional blues album</strong>: &ldquo;Giant&rdquo; &mdash; James Cotton; &ldquo;Memphis Blues&rdquo; &mdash; Cyndi Lauper; &ldquo;The Well&rdquo; &mdash; Charlie Musselwhite; &ldquo;Joined at the Hip&rdquo; &mdash; Pinetop Perkins &amp; Willie &ldquo;Big Eyes&rdquo; Smith; &ldquo;Plays Blues, Ballads &amp; Favorites&rdquo; &mdash; Jimmie Vaughan.</p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Thu, 02 Dec 2010 06:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blog/jim-derogatis/eminem-gets-10-nods-10-years-after-he-mattered-and-other-dubious-wonders-2010-gra