Grammy Award nominations dropped today, November 20, and there are a few Colorado connections.
Gregory Alan Isakov has been nominated in the Best Folk Album category for Evening Machines. The Boulder-based crooner, who works on his music at night after tending to his small farm, writes quiet songs with extraordinary depth, using imagery about landscapes to explore the inner self.
“Time is such a trippy thing when you’re working on music," he told Westword's Elle Carroll in August. "You’ll work on a piece of music for a month, and it might end up in the trash. With farming, I grow for a bunch of restaurants, so it’s like, I have deliveries three days a week; I’m planting every week. With recording, you have no idea. Months go by of work, and we don’t even know if we have anything. It’s a beautiful thing to be like, ‘I know what I can do in an hour.’”
That slow-paced approach to music has paid off, and his album is gorgeous. Hear a sample from his video for the song "San Luis" below:
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Isakov's album will be weighed against Andrew Bird's My Finest Work Yet, Che Apalache's Rearrange My Heart, a self-titled Patty Griffin album and Joy Williams's Front Porch.
The improv-heavy funk band Lettuce, a Colorado favorite, was nominated for Elevate in the Best Contemporary Instrumental Album category. Drummer Adam Deitch and guitar player Adam "Shmeeans" Smirnoff are now Denver residents, though the rest of the band is spread across the United States. Elevate was recorded at Colorado Sound Studios in Denver.
Back in June, Deitch told Westword's Nick Hutchinson all about the group's sound: "At first we were really die-hard funk players, and we really tried to slam people with horns and beats, but now we're incorporating hip-hop influences and psychedelia and stretching out the songs more to where we can play a twenty-minute tune that keeps everyone's attention and keeps the crowd in the palm of our hand with improvised sections and stuff like that."
Lettuce will be competing with Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah's Ancestral Recall, Theo Croker's Star People Nation, Mark Guiliana's Beat Music! Beat Music! Beat Music!, and Rodrigo y Gabriela's Mettavolution.
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Denver's India.Arie, who has won multiple Grammy awards, was nominated for the song "Steady Love" in the Best Traditional R&B category.
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse was nominated in the Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media category. Denver rapper Trev Rich wrote and performed on the track "Elevate" under his author name Trevor Rich.
The Grammy Awards will be broadcast on CBS on January 26. For a full list of nominees in 84 categories, go to the Grammy Awards website.
Do you know of other Colorado Grammy connections? Send us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.