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Welcome to STop, the Seattle Times Opinion blog where our editorial writers and editors share their evolving thoughts on a variety of issues. STop is a place where opinion writers and readers can exchange views and readers can learn more about how editorial positions are formed.

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December 09, 2005

Grammy

Normally I do not pay attention to the Grammys. The award ceremony and everything connected with it passes by like a thunderstorm in South America. Loud and bright I am sure, but far from my realm of being. The past two years have been different. Two great Seattle bands have been nominated. Last year it was Modest Mouse in the alternative category. In the same category this year it is Death Cab For Cutie. Good for them. Great bands that deserve the recognition. I will be pulling for Death Cab, but they do not have a good chance. The field is packed with heavy hitters such as Beck and The White Stripes.

Is Death Cab's presence going to drive me to my TV for the awards show? No way. With Mariah Carey dominating the Grammys with eight - no joke - eight nominations, the show is destined to be a high pitched bore. Because I never watch the Grammys I have no idea how or when Record of the Year, Album of the Year and Song of the Year started going to the people that sold the most albums. But selling massive amounts of albums seems to be the qualifier for the big awards. Performers get the nod instead of musicians. My guess is that the huge conglomerates that control the music industry and have those good selling performers influence the nomination process. Music has become a homogenous brand like everything else in America. Focus group product X to death then unleash it on the public.

Any of the bands nominated in the alternative category, which also includes the awesome Arcade Fire and Franz Ferdinand, have made albums if not as good as but better than Carey, Paul McCartney Gwen Stefani, U2 and Kanye West, all nominated for Album of the Year.

It is telling that Death Cab and Modest Mouse got nominations after leaving the indy ranks. I am glad they made the jump to the big leagues. The world needs more Death Cab. It is just too bad good music is not awarded the industry's top prize.

Respond to Ryan.

 
Posted by Ryan Blethen at December 9, 2005 03:44 PM



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December 2005

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