The image on the screens at the Grammy Premiere Ceremony Sunday, as the nomination was read.
Being nominated for a GRAMMY for my liner notes for Astor Piazzolla, The American Clave Recordings, his “American” trilogy, was personally meaningful. The late Astor Piazzolla was a musical hero of mine and an inspiration to become a musician while growing up in Buenos Aires. Kip Hanrahan, the brilliant producer of these recordings, is a dear friend.
Getting the nomination was quite an (unexpected) achievement. Winning was another matter. The category included truly excellent work by John Schneider (for Harry Partch, 1942), Ted Olson on Doc Watson (Life’s Work: A Retrospective), and Gareth Murphy (for Andy Irvine & Paul Brady). And congratulations to Bob Mehr for winning the Grammy for the notes for Wilco’s Yankee Hotel Foxtrot (20th Anniversary Super Deluxe Edition)
I was disappointed, of course — and my next thought was to apologize to Astor and Kip. I felt I had failed them. When I mentioned it to Kip in a message, he didn’t want to hear about it and did what friends do: he threw me a lifeline. “Nothing having to do with Astor has ever gotten a Grammy before. This is as close as we got.”
Come to think of it, I don’t believe Kip, despite the exceptional body of work he has created over the past 40 years, has received his due, either.
I take this as a win, then. This is for you, Astor, and Kip. Thank you for the music.