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Grammys show Robert Plant, Alison Krauss a whole lotta love

By JAKE COYLE AP Entertainment Writer Modified: February 9, 2009 at 12:46 pm •  Published: February 9, 2009
/articleid/3344404/1/pictures/540326">Photo - Lil Wayne performs at the 51st Annual Grammy Awards on Sunday, Feb. 8, 2009, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Lil Wayne performs at the 51st Annual Grammy Awards on Sunday, Feb. 8, 2009, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Following the inauguration and the Super Bowl, it was just about the only major broadcast of late not to feature Bruce Springsteen, whose "Girls in Their Summer Clothes" won for best rock song.

Besides the expected mention of Obama ("congratulations," said), Portnow was one of few to mention Obama. He noted musicians had supplied "the soundtrack to history" and that the new president is, after all, a two-time Grammy winner for his readings of his books.

Such awards, though, never make it into the televised broadcast, which this year included awards for only a dozen of the 110 categories.

Among the unseen awards was a posthumous award for George Carlin in the comedy album category for "It's Bad for Ya," a recording of his final HBO comedy special. Al Gore — adding to his extensive awards tally — won for the audio book of his "An Inconvenient Truth."

Instead of focusing on the awards, though, the Recording Academy has increasingly turned the Grammys into an all-star revue, packing the three-and-a-half-hour long show with performance after performance, duet after duet.

Among them: U2 kicking things off with their new single "Get on Your Boots"; Lil Wayne and Allen Toussaint paying tribute to New Orleans; Neil Diamond singing "Sweet Caroline"; Radiohead performing with the University of Southern California marching band; Jay-Z joining Coldplay; a tribute to the Four Tops; and Jennifer Hudson singing a rousing, touching version of "You Pulled Me Through" that left her teary-eyed.

Following the Super Bowl, it was Hudson's second major performance since her mother, brother and nephew were killed in October. Hudson's self-titled disc also won best R&B album.

"I first would like to thank God, who has brought me through," she said accepting the award. "I would like to thank my family in heaven and those who are with me today."

The Grammys also sought to tap into online traffic with official updates on Twitter and Facebook throughout the broadcast.

There were some oddities in the show, too:

Gwyneth Paltrow introduced not the giant British rock group that her husband, Chris Martin, plays in (Coldplay), but the giant British rock band they have often been compared to (Radiohead). Introducing the Al Green performance, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson curiously declared, "I live for the Grammys." Katy Perry, again singing her hit "I Kissed a Girl," performed a choreographed routine while simultaneously appearing to disdain choreographed routines.

Other notable winners included: Rick Rubin for producer of the year; Adele for best female pop vocal performance ("Chasing Pavements"); Duffy for best pop vocal album ("Rockferry"); Radiohead for best alternative music album ("In Rainbows"); Metallica for best metal performance ("My Apocalypse"); Al Green for best R&B performance by a duo or group with vocals, and best traditional R&B vocal performance; Daft Punk for best dance recording, and best electronic dance album; George Strait for best country album ("Troubadour"); and B.B. King for best traditional blues album ("One Kind Favor").

A complete list of winners is available at

Following last year's surprise best album winner — Herbie Hancock's Joni Mitchell tribute "River: The Joni Letters" — the Grammys have now picked a folk album for best album a year after choosing a jazz record.

Krauss is the most decorated female artist in Grammy history with 26 awards. Burnett has known Grammy glory before, too, most notably as producer of the best-album winning soundtrack to "O Brother, Where Art Thou?"

Led Zepplin, which was given a lifetime achievement Grammy in 2005, was never otherwise honored by the Recording Academy.


On the Net:

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press.

StaticBlog at the Grammys

A partial list of winners at the 51st Annual Grammy Awards:

• Album of the Year: "Raising Sand,” Robert Plant and Alison Krauss

• Rap Album: "Tha Carter III,” Lil Wayne

• Male Pop Vocal Performance: "Say,” John Mayer

• Record of the Year: "Please Read The Letter,” Robert Plant and Alison Krauss

• New Artist: Adele

• Rock Album: "Viva La Vida Or Death And All His Friends,” Coldplay

• Song of the Year: "Viva La Vida,” Guy Berryman, Jonny Buckland, Will Champion and Chris Martin, songwriters (Coldplay)

• Country Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals: "Stay,” Sugarland

• R&B Album: "Jennifer Hudson,” Jennifer Hudson

• Female Pop Vocal Performance: "Chasing Pavements,” Adele

• Pop Vocal Album: "Rockferry,” Duffy

• Pop Instrumental Performance: "I Dreamed There Was No War,” Eagles

• Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals: "Viva La Vida,” Coldplay

• Alternative Music Album: "In Rainbows,” Radiohead

• Solo Rock Vocal Performance: "Gravity,” John Mayer

• Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals: "Sex on Fire,” Kings of Leon

• Hard Rock Performance: "Wax Simulacra,” The Mars Volta

• Metal Performance: "My Apocalypse,” Metallica

• Rock Song: "Girls in Their Summer Clothes,” Bruce Springsteen

• Rap Solo Performance: "A Milli,” Lil Wayne

• Rap Performance by a Duo or Group: "Swagga Like Us,” Jay-Z and T.I. featuring Kanye West and Lil Wayne

• Rap/Song Collaboration: "American Boy,” Estelle and Kanye West

• Rap Song: "Lollipop,” Dwayne Carter, Darius Harrison, James Scheffer, Stephen Garrett and Rex Zamor, songwriters (Lil Wayne featuring Static Major)

• Country Song: "Stay,” Jennifer Nettles, songwriter (Sugarland)

• Country Album: "Troubadour,” George Strait

• Female Country Vocal Performance: "Last Name,” Carrie Underwood

• Male Country Vocal Performance: "Letter to Me,” Brad Paisley

• R&B Song: "Miss Independent,” Mikkel S. Eriksen, Tor Erik Hermansen and Shaffer Smith

• Contemporary R&B Album: "Growing Pains,” Mary J. Blige

• Gospel Song: "Help Me Believe,” Kirk Franklin

• Rock or Rap Gospel Album: "Alive and Transported,” TobyMac

• Pop/Contemporary Gospel Album: "Thy Kingdom Come,” CeCe Winans

• Southern, Country, Bluegrass Gospel: "Lovin’ Life,” Gaither Vocal Band

• Song Written for Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media: "Down to Earth” ("WALL-E”)


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