The Grammy Museum in downtown Los Angeles has been the setting for more than 900 intimate Q&As and performances, sometimes bringing in as many as 100 artists in a single year, as it did in 2019, to sit for an interview followed by a (usually) acoustic set. These haven’t been strictly “you had to be there” affairs — each evening has been prefaced with a request not to shoot video because the live proceedings are being filmed for posterity — but the encounters have lived on only in the museum’s video viewing facilities, as appointment viewing that required serious dedication on the part of local or visiting fans.
Now, thanks (and no thanks) to the coronavirus crisis, the Grammy Museum is finally putting some of those recorded programs online, in recognition that no one will be visiting downtown L.A. to watch video for a while, and that most everyone could stand quality time with a Billie Eilish or a Brandi Carlile to get through the shut-in months.
Included in the initial rollout from the archives: nine programs featuring Eilish with her brother Finneas, Carlile, Yola, Bob Newhart, Greta Van Fleet, Kool and the Gang, X Ambassadors, Larkin Poe and Scarypoolparty, many of them recorded in the last few months. All were filmed at the 200-seat Clive Davis Theater inside the museum, located in the LA Live complex.
For now, only the Q&A portions of the evenings — which are in-depth conversations that typically last an hour — will be put on the web, although the museum is in talks with some performers to put up the performance portions as well, at a later date.
One new program will go online every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, starting with Scarypoolparty today. The schedule for the initial nine:
3/18 – Scarypoolparty
3/21 – Yola
3/23 – Bob Newhart
3/25 – Larkin Poe
3/28 – X Ambassadors
3/30 – Brandi Carlile
4/1 – Billie Eilish and Finneas
4/4 – Greta Van Fleet
4/6 – Kool and the Gang
The programs will be put up for viewing at www.grammymuseum.org.
“The Grammy Museum’s doors may be closed, but our mission isn’t,” Grammy Museum president Michael Sticka said in a statement. “It is our privilege to share these never-before-released interviews by beloved artists with you and bring them into your homes. With these programs, we hope that people will find solace and inspiration.” Sticka added that “we believe that music has the power to bring us together, strengthen our sense of community and drive us forward, especially in times when it feels like we are being pulled apart.”
The org is making other previously facility-exclusive content available on the web, as well. Slideshows of photos from past exhibitions at the museum will go online every Friday, starting March 20 with “X: 40 Years Of Punk in Los Angeles.” The second photo gallery from a previous exhibit, to go up March 27, will be “Take Me Out To The Ball Game: Popular Music And The National Pastime.”
Museum reps said they plan to also put up educational content, lesson plans and daily playlists on the website during the closure, with more plans to be revealed shortly.
Further rounds of artist programs from the Clive Davis Theater will be announced going forward as well.