Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Herbie Hancock wins Grammy

The NY Times reported the other day on Herbie Hancock winning the Grammy for Best Album.

Well, yeah, who fucking cares?

This award ceremony is 1000x worse than the Oscars (which we love/hate), and a recent list of winners of this same award is embarrassing and will be included without discussion.

The Dixie Chicks' "political" album, U2's second "comeback" album, a Ray Charles posthumous duets album, the O Brother Where Art Thou soundtrack (!), and a Celine Dion record. The only real records to win in recent years: Outkast, Bob Dylan, Lauryn Hill.

The article points out that only Getz/Gilberto, the best-selling jazz album of all time, has ever been both a Grammy winner and a jazz record. No Coltrane. No Miles Davis. And no 60s Herbie Hancock. Certainly no jazz musician to come up *after* Coltrane. Whether this is making-up for that, we cannot tell.

Simply put, whom the Grammy goes to tells us nothing. Not about what is good, not about what is deserving, not about what is popular. It tells us only who won an arbitrary vote by out-of-touch I-don't-know-whos. Even the most clueless non-music-fan knows that Radiohead are the most *important* rock band of the last 15 years. Yet Steely Dan beats them out for the Grammy. You couldn't pay me to listen to either of those bands, but my point is, the Grammy is a barometer of precisely nothing.

Less interesting than anything, of course, would be a debate about whether this win was "deserved" or not, or who else should have one. Let's not dirty ourselves with that. Do, however, check out the jaw-droppingly-irrelevant list of past winners.

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