When the Stardust settled, there were two big winners at the 33rd annual Grammy Awards: Quincy Jones, who collected six prizes, and New York City’s ailing economy. Gotham collected between $45 million and $60 million in Grammy business during the week leading up to the Feb. 20 ceremony at Radio City Music Hall.
Sources had estimated Grammy income at $30 million for the city – roughly equivalent to what was made when the awards were last held here in 1988. But revenue for hotels, travel services and other merchants spiraled as much as 100% above 1988.
Mayor David Dinkins, who hopes to host the Grammys “at least every other year,” said Edwin Cooperman, prez/CEO of American Express Travel Related Services and chairman of the 1991 N.Y. Host Committee, was working on a ’93 proposal.
Recording Academy prez Michael Greene hinted the awards may become a regularly alternate coast affair, but Grammycast producer Pierre Cossette insisted it would be “too expensive to go back and forth.”
This year marked the fifth time the Grammys have been held in New York, as opposed to Los Angeles. Previous Gotham Grammy ceremonies occurred in ’88, ’81, ’74 and ’72.
Nielsen ratings appeared oblivious to the site change: CBS won the 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. slot with an 18.8 rating and 31 share, almost identical to last year’s 18.9/31.
Hosted by Garry Shandling, the CBS telecast was beamed to 60 nations, including Saudi Arabia, and seen by an estimated 1 billion viewers.
The awards themselves were fairly predictable. Longtime favorite Jones now has a total of 25 trophies, compared with all-time leader Sir Georg Solti’s 28. Jones’ “Back On The Block” LP was named album of the year and best engineered recording, and Jones was named non-classical producer of the year.
Disk’s “Birdland” cut was cited as best jazz fusion performance, as well as best arrangement on an instrumental. The LP’s title song took best rap performance a duo or group kudos, while the “I’ll Be Good To You” single won best r& b performance by a duo or group with vocal.
Most other major awards were equally unsurprising: Phil Collins’ “Another Day In Paradise” won record of the year; Julie Gold’s “From A Distance” won song of the year; M.C. Hammer was rewarded with the rap solo performance award for “U Can’t Touch This.” Hammer also won longform video (“Please Hammer Don’t Hurt ‘Em – The Movie”) and r& b song (“U Can’t Touch This”).
Newcomer Mariah Carey took the new artist and pop vocal, female, awards.
Evening’s one unforeseen moment, and the most-talked about, was Lifetime Achievement winner Bob Dylan’s rocked-up version of his “Masters Of War” and his obscure acceptance speech.
Other lifetime awards were presented to John Lennon, Marian Anderson and Kitty Wells. Producers Milt Gabler, Berry Gordy Jr. and Sam Phillips received Trustees Awards.
There was a general shrugging of shoulders over mini-controversies surrounding no-shows Sinead O’Connor and Public Enemy – the former objected to the “commerciality” of the music industry and the Grammys, while the latter protested the exclusion of the rap performance a duo or group category (in which PE was nominated) from the televised portion.
Alannah Miles, who won best rock performance, female for “Black Velvet,” said O’Connor’s biggest mistake was “that she got caught by the press.”
O’Connor’s “I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got” album won the best alternative music performance award, given this year for the first time.
Public Enemy’s “boycotting” – reminiscent of 1989, when few of the nominees (in what was then only one rap category) attended because the award was not televised – was more curious, since the rap award for solo performance was telecast.
“We had 79 categories this year,” said NARAS prez Greene, adding that there is no feasible way to televise them all, “so there’s always someone mad at us every year.”
Other awards follow:
Pop vocal, male: “Oh Pretty Woman” (track from “A Black & White Night Live”) – Roy Orbison.
Pop duo or group with vocal: “All My Life” – Linda Ronstadt with Aaron Neville.
Pop instrumental: “Twin Peaks Theme” Angelo Badalamenti.
Rock vocal, male: “Bad Love”- Eric Clapton.
Rock performance, duo or group with vocal: “Janie’s Got A Gun” – Aerosmith.
Rock instrumental performance: “D/FW” (track from “Family Style”) – The Vaughan Bros.
Hard rock performance: “Time’s Up” – Living Colour.
Metal performance: “Stone Cold Crazy” – Metallica.
R& b vocal, female: “Compositions” – Anita Baker.
R& b vocal, male: “Here And Now” – Luther Vandross.
Country vocal performance, female: “Where’ve You Been” – Kathy Mattea.
Country vocal performance, male: “When I Call Your Name” – Vince Gilt.
Musical cast show album: “Les Miserables, The Complete Symphonic Recording” (Gary Morris, Philip Quast, Kaho Shimada, Tracey Shayne and various casts) – David Caddick, producer (Alain Boublil, Herbert Kretzmer, lyricists; Claude Michel Schonberg, composer).
Instrumental composition for a motion picture or tv: “Glory” – James Horner, composer.
Song written specifically for a motion picture or for television: “Under The Sea” (track from “The Little Mermaid” original soundtrack) – Alan Menken, Howard Ashman, songwriters.