Grammys 2013: Sharing The Wealth At The Grammys
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Unlike last year, when Adele swept the Grammy Awards, this year the marquee awards were spread around. Mumford & Sons’ sophomore album Babel was voted Album of the Year. It was the second year in a row that a British artist has won that award. Adele took it last year for 21. Mumford & Sons, which has spearheaded a comeback for folk/rock, also won for Best Long Form Music Video for Big Easy Express.
“Somebody That I Used To Know” by Gotye featuring Kimbra took two awards, including Record of the Year. The classy breakup ballad echoes Sting’s best work. It was the best-selling song of 2012. (This marks the second year in a row that the year’s best-selling song has also won Record of the Year. Adele’s “Rolling In The Deep” earned both distinctions last year.) Gotye won a third award: Best Alternative Music Album for Making Mirrors. (This should make up for the curious fact that Gotye was passed over for a nomination as Best New Artist.)
[ Photos: Grammys red carpet report card ]
The New York pop-rock trio fun. took two key awards: Best New Artist and Song of the Year for “We Are Young.” That chart-topping hit, which the members co-wrote with their producer, Jeff Bhasker, echoes the grandeur of classic Queen hits.
Though they were shut out in the marquee categories, The Black Keys won three awards. The rock duo won Best Rock Album for El Camino and Best Rock Song and Best Rock Performance for “Lonely Boy.” They beat Bruce Springsteen in all three categories. In addition, the duo’s Dan Auerbach was voted Producer of the Year, Non-Classical.
Jay-Z/Kanye West won three awards: two for their frisky smash “N****s In Paris” and one for “No Church In The Wild” (which featured Frank Ocean and The-Dream). Both tracks are from their hit 2011 collaboration, Watch The Throne. These awards bring West’s total of Grammys to 21; Jay-Z’s to 17. (With both artists, all of the awards have come in the rap and R&B fields. That’s a sore point with West.)
Red-hot DJ Skrillex, who won three Grammys last year, won three more awards this year: Best Dance/Electronica Album for Bangarang, Best Dance Recording for the title track (which features Sirah) and Best Remixed Recording, Non- Classical for his remix of Nero’s “Promises.”
Adele took Best Pop Solo Performance for the second year in a row for “Set Fire To The Rain.” Adele won six awards at last year’s Grammys. She’s only the second artist to win six or more Grammys one year and come back and win another Grammy the following year. The first: Michael Jackson.
Artists who had big hits last year, but went home empty handed include Carly Rae Jepsen, Maroon 5 and Flo Rida. Jepsen had the year’s #2 hit with the fizzy “Call Me Maybe,” but lost in her two categories. Maroon 5 (which has won three Grammys in the past) had its biggest year on the charts with such smash hits as “Payphone” and “One More Night,” but also came up short in its two categories. Flo Rida has sold in the range of 40 million digital songs, but has yet to win a Grammy.
As always, there were several big surprises. Bonnie Raitt’s Slipstream won Best Americana Album, beating Mumford & Sons’ Babel, which was heavily favored to win. “I was not expecting this,” Raitt said in picking up the award.
Kelly Clarkson was also a surprise winner for Best Pop Vocal Album for Stronger. (Most observers expected fun. to win.) Clarkson won the same award with 2005’s Breakaway. She’s the first repeat winner in the history of the category, which dates to 1994.