Each year tons of viewers tune their televisions to view the annual music lovefest. Yes! It is Grammy Awards which exercises its magic on the viewers. The musical parades in eye-popping costumes, nominated songs performed in flashy manner, spectacle like presentation hook up the viewers to their televisions. The Grammy Awards were not televised together from 1958 to 1971. Instead it was filmed and broadcasted on NBC throughout the year. It is also considered the most prestigious awards in the music industry. Pierre Cossetter purchased the rights for broadcast of the ceremony in 1971. It was from here when the Grammy Awards were telecasted on live.
The name ‘Grammy’ in the ‘Grammy Awards’ is because Grammy is a trophy, which the winner is awarded. Initially it was known as Gramophone Awards, which was shortened overtime to its current name ‘Grammy’. National Academy of Recording Arts and Science presents this award for the outstanding achievements in the music industry.
It all started in 1958, when rock ‘n’ roll alarmed a group of executives by its explosive success. The group fell in dilemma, whether to recognize rock ‘n’ roll or to honor “good” music such as Sinatra and Doris Day. Their final aim was to set a quality standard in the music industry. So this is the ultimate reason for the up rise of Grammys. From the beginning, the Grammys have been at odds and scornful of not only rock but every other wave of rebellious, from R&B to Woodstock, new music, street-bred music, and rap. It is also said that the early committee was very biased against modern (especially) rock ‘n’ roll music. However, the change didn’t come easily.
The first award for rock music wasn’t given until 1961. Even as late as 1967, only one nominee could fairly be termed as a rock album for Album of the year. This conservative voting of Grammy has resulted in a huge list of follies. Most of the best recordings have failed to win a Grammy in the first forty years of Grammy history. On the night of November 1959, the first Grammy Award telecast took place. Grammys successfully completed 52nd Annual Awards held on January 31, 2010, at Staples Center in Los Angeles. As of 2007, 7,578 trophies have been awarded. U2 has won 22 Grammy Awards and holds a record.
The prestigious Grammys have been accused of only paying attention to big sales of albums and rewarding those artists who were commercially successful. They are also criticized for distributing numberless awards than needed and that a large portion of the ceremony is ‘filler’ resulting in a longer engagement. Critics observe the ceremony as merely self-congratulatory to the industry. Maynard James Keenan, lead singer of progressive metal band tool has voiced his personal opinion with the nature of the Grammys. He opines, “I think the Grammys are nothing more than some gigantic promotional machine for the music industry. They cater to a low intellect and they feed the masses. They don’t honor the arts or the artist for what he created. It’s the music business celebrating itself. That’s basically what it’s all about.”
The Grammys have lasted over 50 years in spite of all the criticisms. Nielsen Ratings has reported an estimation of 25.9 million viewers who tuned to watch the Grammys on January 31, 2010. Hence, the Grammys prove its ability to draw the music lovers to their television sets.