Tag Archive | "grammys"

Independents Log Half of All GRAMMY Noms for 3rd Consecutive Year

Press release submitted by David McTiernan

A2IM, the American Association of Independent Music, congratulates this year’s Grammy Award nominees, in particular recognizing the independent music labels and artists that earned 210 nominations out of 393 non-producer category nominations – half of all nominees for the third consecutive year. Independents were led by huge nights for Mumford & Sons, Alabama Shakes, The Lumineers, Ultra Music, Smithsonian Folkways, Naxos of America, and Concord Music Group, the independent label leader in total GRAMMY nominations with 26 total nods.

Jim Mahoney, A2IM Vice President, says, “What an exciting night for so many independent labels and artists… from independent leaders Concord Music Group, Glassnote, Ultra Records and ATO to the outstanding people at Sunnyside Records, Mack Avenue, Nacional, and Compass Records…outstanding!”

Of the multiple nominations for Mumford & Sons’ ‘Babel,’ Glassnote CEO Daniel Glass said “‘Babel’ continues to prove itself and touch people. We are elated, inspired, and proud of Mumford & Sons and their very talented producer Markus Dravs.”

Echoed ATO Records GM Jon Salter, “We’re so proud to be working with the Alabama Shakes. The band’s talent and passion brings an energy to the music that’s touching listeners across the country. Congratulations to the Shakes and all the devoted fans.” Nicole Blonder, Sr. Director of Marketing and Sales for Mute Records continued, “We’re so proud of M83 and the entire team! Everyone’s worked incredibly hard to have this masterpiece of an album be recognized by the industry. It’s been an amazing year!”

“On behalf of everyone who pours their hearts and souls into the great artists on independent labels,” continued Mahoney, “A2IM couldn’t be prouder or more pleased for the recognition that the voting members of The Recording Academy showered upon this community tonight.  Congrats to all of the nominees and we look forward to a big independent celebration in February.”

For a full list of A2IM member nominees, visit www.a2im.org.

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Béla Fleck + Marcus Roberts Trio Close Out Berklee BeanTown Jazz Fest @ BPC

Photo by Lisa Occhino

[Click here to view all of our Bela Fleck + Marcus Roberts Trio concert photos]

The Berklee Performance Center is one of the many venues that Berklee students idolize. With 1,200+ seats, the spotlight, and the stage that has held phenomenal artists like John Mayer, Paul Simon, and Victor Wooten, who wouldn’t want to perform there?

Nevertheless, the show that took place at the packed BPC last Sunday on September 30th, to officially close out the Berklee BeanTown Jazz Festival, wasn’t performed by a wide-eyed Berklee student who hopes to follow in the footsteps of the greats who have stood on that same stage. The mind-blowing display of top-notch musicianship was from none other than Béla Fleck and the Marcus Roberts Trio.

Béla Fleck, who has been nominated in more Grammy Awards categories than any other artist, is easily one of the most influential and technically proficient banjo players in the world. Naturally, he wouldn’t team up with just anyone. Joining him on stage was flawless and seasoned jazz pianist, Marcus Roberts, and the members of the Marcus Roberts Trio, including bassist Rodney Jordan and drummer Jason Marsalis, who both showed equal amounts of immaculate technique and overwhelming passion.

Photo by Lisa Occhino

Contesting to the fact that some of the most incredibly talented and experienced performers in the world were on one stage, performing tunes not only from the recently released and progressively beautiful collaboration album from Fleck and Roberts’ trio, “Across the Imaginary Divide”, it can be said without a doubt that the genre of music performed that night cannot be filed under one category. Yet, how could it? If you know anything about Béla Fleck, you would know that he has a history of using his banjo as more than just an instrument and more as an innovative tool to delve into more than just the bluegrass that the banjo is most popularly known for, but traditional and progressive jazz, and even ragtime, as well. If you know anything about Marcus Roberts (and if you don’t then you absolutely should), then you would know that he is one of the most charismatic, energetic, and technically spectacular jazz pianists in the world. Put those two together on stage (or even on the recently released album), and you’re sure to get music that was treated with care, precision, and creativity all at the same time. With Fleck and the trio up on that stage together, we were sure to get magic. And magic was just what we got.

Photo by Lisa Occhino

Clearly stunned by the sheer amount of perfection dished out even in just the first song, it was one of the first times that I have heard a crowd in the BPC absolutely silent… and I understood why. Now, let me be the first to say that I am not a jazzhead. I spent the summer in Nashville soaking in as much bluegrass and country music as I could (and I’ve got to say… I sure do love the banjo), but jazz is often a genre that is lost upon me… and unrightfully so. Béla Fleck and the Marcus Roberts Trio, with gorgeous songs such as Fleck’s original tune, “One Blue Truth”, brought together a crowd (myself enthusiastically included, I might add) who still believe that music can be more than just a typical One Direction or Justin Bieber song. The music played that night was music that is sophistically crafted, and when played, Béla and each member of the trio took their turns with solos (that were all absolutely stunning and demonstrated talent far, far beyond what is typically seen in live performances these days) and didn’t attempt to outshine each other at all – something that is extremely refreshing when compared to many shows around Berklee.

Photo by Lisa Occhino

These are musicians that know music like the back of their hands and depend on the music to put on a show. They don’t have a fancy light show, they don’t have one person acting as the most important person on stage, they don’t have 13 different keyboards and drum machines, and they don’t even have lyrics. All they had that night were their instruments and their talent. Béla Fleck didn’t even sit center stage. Marcus Roberts, who unintentionally stole the show through his mind-blowing playing in every song, didn’t even introduce himself when introducing the band.

While I am still a country music lover at heart and don’t need much more than three chords and a good hook to make me happy, Béla Fleck and the Marcus Roberts Trio’s performance wasn’t just a show; it was a musical experience; and that, my fellow musicians, is something we should all strive to create much, much more of.

Article by Alyssa McCord
For more Béla Fleck and the Marcus Roberts Trio, check out these links below:
Béla Fleck – Official Website
Marcus Roberts Trio – Official Website
Purchase “Across the Imaginary Divide”

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Berklee Alumni Win Nine Grammy Awards

From left: Terri Lyne Carrington '83, Berklee trustee Phil Ramone, Quincy Jones '51, Esperanza Spalding '05, and Berklee president Roger Brown at the Conga Room in Los Angeles celebrating alumni winners and nominees. Photo by Zach Coco.

Submitted By: Margot Edwards

Berklee alumni and faculty were honored with nine Grammy Awards on music’s biggest night for their outstanding contributions to some of last year’s top releases. The winners were recognized for their work in varied categories and fields, including rap songwriting, jazz, and blues. With Sunday night’s wins, Berklee alumni have now won a total of 214 Grammy Awards.

Terri Lyne Carrington ’83 won the Best Vocal Jazz Album award for The Mosaic Project. Carrington’s album features a “who’s who” of female jazz artists, including Esperanza Spalding ’05, who won the Grammy Award for Best New Artist in 2011, and the renowned Nona Hendryx. In addition to performing and recording, Carrington serves as a percussion professor at Berklee.

Songwriter Jeff Bhasker ’99 won the Best Rap Song award for “All of the Lights” by Kanye West, Rihanna, Kid Cudi, and Fergie.

Alumnus Trey Parker ’88, best known for his work on Comedy Central’s South Park, took home the award for Best Musical Theater Album. Parker produced, composed, and wrote the lyrics for the musical The Book of Mormon, of which alumnus Stephen Oremus ’92 was also a producer.

Susan Tedeschi ’91 and Mark Rivers ’89, members of the Tedeschi Trucks Band, were awarded Best Blues Album for their album, Revelator.

Engineer Byeong-Joon Hwang ’99 and mastering engineer Jesse Lewis ’93 took the gramophone for Best Engineered Album, Classical for their behind-the-scenes work on Robert Aldridge’s Elmer Gantry.

Also in engineering, alumnus Benny Faccone ’78 was awarded for his work on Maná’s album Drama y Luz, which was deemed Best Latin Pop, Rock, or Urban Album.

Berklee alumni also made important contributions to winning albums. Dean of continuing education Debbie Cavalier ’87 and faculty technology services manager Michael Carrera ’91 have a song on the compilation album All About Bullies . . . Big and Small, which won Best Children’s Album.

As the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences researches the producers, engineers, and mixers who contributed to Grammy Award–winning songs and albums, the number of Berklee alumni winners is expected to grow. Log on to Berklee.edu for the most up-to-date information.

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Berklee Alumni Earn 29 Grammy Nominations

Article By: Liz Burg

The National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences nominated 24 Berklee alumni and faculty for a total of 29 Grammy Awards. The nominees were recognized for their outstanding contributions across the spectrum of music, including pop, rock, hip-hop, alternative, jazz, and Latin. Producers, engineers, and arrangers were also nominated. To date, Berklee alumni have won 205 Grammy Awards. The 54th annual Grammy Awards will be held on Sunday, February 12, 2012 and broadcast on CBS at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT.

Alumni and faculty members Terri Lyne Carrington ’83, percussion professor and artistic director for the Berklee BeanTown Jazz Festival, and Joe Lovano ’72, Berklee’s Gary Burton Jazz Chair in Jazz Performance, are each nominated for an award. Carrington’s new album, The Mosaic Project, is nominated for Best Jazz Vocal Album. If she wins, this will be her first Grammy Award. Lovano’s album, Bird Songs, is nominated for Best Jazz Instrumental Album. If he wins, this will be his second Grammy Award.

Berklee alumni boast nominations in the prestigious top three categories. Engineer Miles Walker ’04 is nominated for his work on Katy Perry’s Firework, up for the top Grammy Award, Record of the Year, and he is nominated for his work on Rihanna’s Loud, which is up for Album of the Year. Fellow engineer Jeffrey Villanueva ’07 along with producer Makeba Riddick ’99 are also up for Album of the Year for their work on Loud. A fourth Berklee alumnus, engineer Thomas Ware ’91, is also nominated for Album of the Year for his work on Lady Gaga’s Born This Way. Two Berklee alumni are nominated for Song of the Year. Songwriter Claude Kelly’s ’02 work on Bruno Mars’s hit Grenade earned him the nomination, while songwriter Jeff Bhasker ’99 is nominated for writing Kanye West, Rihanna, Kid Cudi, and Fergie’s hit All of the Lights. Kelly and Bhasker are each nominated for additional awards: Best R&B Song and Best Rap Song respectively.

A number of Berklee alumni are up for prestigious performance-based awards spanning a range of genres. John Petrucci ’86, John Myung ’86, and Mike Portnoy ’86, members of the group Dream Theater, are nominated for Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance. Gillian Welch ’92 is nominated for Best Folk Album, and Susan Tedeschi ’91 and Mark Rivers ’89, members of the Tedeschi Trucks Band, are nominated for Best Blues Album.

Other nominees include artists Tierney Sutton ’87 and Christian Jacob ’86 for Best Jazz Vocal Album and Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s), composer Ryan Shore ’96 for Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media, and Nicky Sanders ’02 of the Steep Canyon Rangers for Best Bluegrass Album.

Berklee alumni also contributed to a handful of nominated items, including dean of continuing education Debbie Cavalier ’87 and faculty technology services manager Michael Carrera ’91, whose song is part of a compilation album nominated for Best Children’s Album. Seth Glier ’08 performed on The Next Right Thing, is nominated for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical.

A complete list for the Berklee alumni and faculty nominees for the 54th Annual Grammy Awards follows.

Category 1 – Record of the Year

Engineer Miles Walker ’04 – “Firework” by Katy Perry

Category 2 – Album of the Year

Producer Makeba Riddick ’99 – Loud by Rihanna

Engineer Miles Walker ’04 – Loud by Rihanna

Engineer Jeffrey Villanueva ’07 – Loud by Rihanna

Engineer Tom Ware ’91 – Born This Way by Lady Gaga

Category 3 – Song of the Year

Songwriter Claude Kelly ’02- “Grenade” by Bruno Mars

Songwriter Jeff Bhasker ’99 – “All of the Lights” by Kanye West, Rihanna, Kid Cudi, and Fergie)

Category 13 – Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance

Group Dream Theater (John Petrucci ’86, John Myung ’86, Mike Portnoy ’86) – “On The Backs of Angels”

Category 19 – Best R&B Song

Songwriter Claude Kelly ’02 – “Pieces of Me” by Ledisi

Category 23 – Best Rap Song

Songwriter Jeff Bhasker ’99 – “All of the Lights” by Kanye West, Rihanna, Kid Cudi, and Fergie

Category 31 – Best Jazz Vocal Album

Artist Terri Lyne Carrington ’83 – The Mosaic Project

Artist Tierney Sutton ’87 – American Road

Artist Christian Jacob ’86 – American Road

Category 32 – Best Jazz Instrumental Album

Artist Joe Lovano ’72 – with Us Five for Bird Songs

Category 33 – Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album

Artist Miguel Zenón ’98 – Alma Adentro: The Puerto Rican Songbook

Category 44 – Best Bluegrass Album

Artist Nicky Sanders ’02 (member of The Steep Canyon Rangers) -with Steve Martin for Rare Bird Alert

Category 45 – Best Blues Album

Artist Susan Tedeschi ’91 – Revelator

Artist Mark Rivers ’89 – Revelator

Category 46 – Best Folk Album

Artist Gillian Welch ’92 – The Harrow & The Harvest

Category 53 – Best Musical Theater Album

Producer and Composer/Lyricist Trey Parker ’88  - The Book of Mormon

Producer Stephen Oremus ’92 – The Book of Mormon

Category 55 – Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media

Composer Ryan Shore ’96 - The Shrine

Category 59 – Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s)

Arranger Christian Jacob ’87 – “On Broadway”

Arranger Tierney Sutton ’86 – “On Broadway”

Category 68 – Best Engineered Album, Classical

Engineer Byeong-Joon Hwang ’99 – Aldridge: Elmer Gantry

Mastering Engineer Jesse Lewis ’93 – Aldrige: Elmer Gantry

Mastering Engineer Joe Lambert ’04 – Mackey: Lonely Motel – Music from Slide

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