Kanye West touched off a new round of controversy yesterday when he said that artists like Taylor Swift, Dixie Chicks, Ray Charles, and Herbie Hancock didn’t deserve their Grammy Awards for Album of the Year. But did he have a point? Famed producer Daniel Lanois – who’s helmed several AOTY Grammy winners, including Bob Dylan’s Time Out of Mind (1998 ceremony) and U2’s The Joshua Tree (1988) and How To Dismantle an Atomic Bomb (2005) – thinks he might.
Lanois says that by recognizing legacy artists, the Grammys sometimes miss out on the best music of the moment. “In defense of the Grammy people, they are probably a little bit embarrassed about the fact that they never gave Grammys to the folks that deserved it back in the day,” Lanois tells the Music Mix. “To think that Bob Dylan had never gotten a Grammy Award [for Album of the Year]! I mean, we made a great record, and I think it deserved to win that year. But should Steely Dan be the album of the year from a few years ago ? Kanye might have had a good point on that year. Maybe [they should say], ‘We made a mistake and we didn’t notice so-and-so back then.’ A lot of cool records don’t get noticed at the moment, and then a few years go by, and it’s like, ‘Oh, these people were breaking some ground.’…Just tell it like it is. ‘We overlooked this artist for many years. They’re doing good work now. They’re getting the Overlooked for Many Years award.’ Something like that.”
What do you think about Lanois’ remarks in support of Kanye? Are they right about this one? Speak up in the comments.
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More on the Music Mix:
Kanye West says Taylor Swift, Ray Charles didn’t deserve Grammys
Taylor Swift wins Album of the Year: Did the Grammys get it right?
Bob Dylan’s Time Out of Mind: Ken Tucker’s A+ review