The Grammy Awards, presented by the Recording Academy (an association of Americans professionally involved in the recorded music industry) for outstanding achievements in the recording industry, is one of four major music awards shows held annually in the United States (the Billboard Music Awards, the American Music Awards, and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, make up the rest). However, the Grammys, usually held in February, (last of what are considered the "big three" music awards shows, including the BMA and AMA shows) are considered the approximate equivalent to the Oscars, in the music world.
Like the Oscars, the Grammys, which currently have 105 categories within 30 genres of music (such as pop, gospel, and rap), are voted upon by peers - voting members of the Recording Academy - rather than being based upon popularity (as with the BMAs and the AMAs).
The awards are named for the trophy which the winner receives - a small gilded statuette of a gramophone. Hand Crafted by Billings Artworks.
The awards ceremony features performances by prominent artists, and some of the more prominent Grammys are presented in a widely-viewed televised ceremony.
Some feel that because Grammy voters tend to vote conservatively, and are marketed to by record companies (viewed as pushing artists that sell to "teenage girls and housewives"), the most widely-recognized Grammys tend to go to either well-established artists or those being hyped by the recording industry. Hence, the Grammys are not taken seriously by some musicians and music fans. In fact, artists who are considered by some to be of the greatest in history (such as Elvis Presley and The Rolling Stones) have only been awarded very few Grammys.
Of the "big three" music awards shows, the Grammys are the highest rated. Some music fans believe that the competition between these awards shows (and the controversies that come with it) only press the need for a unified awards system.
Unlike the Academy Awards, for which the eligiblilty period begins January 1, the eligibility period for the Grammys begins October 1, which results in September being considered the Christmas sales period for the music industry (in which artists generally release big albums to qualify for the next year's Grammy). So, for example, John Lennon & Yoko Ono's album Double Fantasy was released in November, 1980, a month-and-a-half too late to qualify for the 1981 Grammys, and thus eligible for the 1982 awards (it eventually won the Grammy Award for Album of the Year).
The Grammys are currently broadcast on CBS.
Pat Metheny and the Pat Metheny Group have won 16 Grammys in total, including six consecutive awards for six consecutive albums. Metheny, as of the 2004 Grammy Awards, holds the record for most Grammy wins in different catergories:
- Best Jazz Fusion Performance (1983, 1984, 1985, 1988, 1990)
- Best Instrumental Composition (1991)
- Best Contemporary Jazz Performance/Album (1993, 1994, 1996, 1999, 2003)
- Best Jazz Instrumental Performance, Individual or Group (1998, 2000)
- Best Rock Instrumental Perfomance (1999)
- Best Jazz Instrumental Solo (2001)
- Best New Age Album (2004)
Session drummer Hal Blaine played on six consecutive records which won Record of the Year:
- 1966 Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass - "A Taste of Honey"
- 1967 Frank Sinatra - "Strangers in the Night"
- 1968 5th Dimension - "Up, Up and Away"
- 1969 Simon & Garfunkel - "Mrs. Robinson"
- 1970 5th Dimension - "Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In"
- 1971 Simon & Garfunkel - "Bridge Over Troubled Water"
Conductor Sir Georg Solti holds the record for most Grammys won, having won a total of thirty-eight awards before his death in 1997.
Composing and arranging
- Best Compilation Soundtrack Album for a Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media
- Best Song Written for a Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media (previously in the "composing and arranging" field)
- Best Score Soundtrack Album for a Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media (previously in the "composing and arranging" field)
Packaging and Notes
Production and engineering
- Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical
- Best Engineered Album, Classical
- Best Engineered Recording - Special or Novel Effects
- Best Remixed Recording , Non-Classical
- Producer of the Year, Non-Classical
- Producer of the Year, Classical
- Remixer of the Year, Non-Classical
- Best Gospel Performance
- Best Gospel Performance, Traditional
- Best Gospel Performance, Contemporary
- Best Gospel Vocal Performance, Female
- Best Gospel Vocal Performance, Male
- Best Gospel Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group, Choir or Chorus
- Best Soul Gospel Performance
- Best Soul Gospel Performance, Traditional
- Best Soul Gospel Performance, Contemporary
- Best Soul Gospel Performance, Female
- Best Soul Gospel Performance, Male
- Best Soul Gospel Performance, Male or Female
- Best Soul Gospel Performance by a Duo or Group, Choir or Chorus
- Best Inspirational Performance
- Best Pop/Contemporary Gospel Album
- Best Rock Gospel Album
- Best Traditional Soul Gospel Album
- Best Contemporary Soul Gospel Album
- Best Southern, Country or Bluegrass Gospel Album
- Best Gospel Choir or Chorus Album
- Best Female R&B Vocal Performance
- Best Male R&B Vocal Performance
- Best R&B Solo Vocal Performance, Male or Female
- Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals
- Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance
- Best R&B Instrumental Performance
- Best Urban/Alternative Performance
- Best Rhythm & Blues Recording
- Best R&B Song
- Best R&B Album
- Best Contemporary R&B Album
Awards by year
Years reflect the year in which the awards were presented, for music released in the previous year.