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Grammys, the view from here

Jeffrey Remz  |  February 13, 2011

11:24 p.m. - The Arcade Fire wins Album of the Year for "The Suburbs." Great album. Actually there is some country on the disc. Lady Antebellum did not win the award with "Need you Now." Maybe there's a tinge of disappointment, but they had a great night and can't complain at all! I'm sure they exceeded their wildest expectations. I'm not sure Hillary Scott could have taken it if they had won this award either.

11:06 p.m. Lady Antebellum takes yet another award - Record of the Year for Need You Now. Tough competition, and a big win. Look for huge sales for the CD next week, well on second thought...That's not a given considering the record industry. Hillary Scott looked rightfully shocked once their name was announced. I mean, who thought they would have beaten Cee-Lo Green and Eminem among others.

10:02 p.m. Nice version of Jolene by Keith Urban, John Mayer and Nora Jones. A little different and tender. Sounded real good. Urban shows what a solid guitarist he is.

9:49 p.m. - Gwyneth Paltrow gets on stage to sing with puppets and Cee-Lo Green. It's not country but she got some vocal chops there. Enjoyable. The puppets thing is pretty cool. And Green...he outdoes Lady Gaga uniform wise.

9:45 p.m. - Lady Antebellum steps up to the spotlight again for winning Best Country Album for "Need You Now." Well, it wasn't my favorite by any stretch. They had some good hits with the title track being about the best of them, but the album had too much mediocre material. I thought maybe Jamey Johnson's "The Guitar Song" would take it as the Grammys aren't like the country music awards show necessarily with going for the popular. Dierks Bentley's "Upon the Ridge" also was a real good CD.

9:40 p.m. Lady Antebellum starts out by singing in a tribute to Teddy Prendergass If You Don't Know Me By Now before going into their own American Honey. Hillary Scott sure looks different to me with the bangs. They sound good. Slowed-down version of Need You Now. However, they also do a truncated version. I never went for that. if the song is good enough, do the whole darn song. You feel cheated.

9:28 p.m. Avett Brothers come on with Head Full Of Doubt, Road Full Of Promise after a great outing by Mumford & Sons. They should tour together. Both bring the energy big time. Then Dylan comes out to play an ensemble of Maggie's Farm. Voice is on the ragged side especially when you compare it to Mumford and Avett. Good energy though.

9 p.m. Miranda Lambert wins Grammy for Best Female Performance With Vocal or something like that for The House That Built Me. Not a surprise as it is a great song, very heartfelt, and did you really think Jewel, LeAnn Rimes or Gretchen Wilson could win? Carrie Underwood also was nominated, but this was really expected. Lambert's career is about to go to another level I think. Hopefully she won't forget her country roots.

8:33 p.m. Blake Shelton introduces Miranda Lambert as someone he really loves. Can't blame him. She's singing The House That Loves Me. Love that heartfelt song about going back to your roots and experiencing what was once familiar. She's a bit flat on a few words I got to say. Not as expressive as she usually is, but picks it up on the lines starting "I thought..." I'd say it's a bit too low key and doesn't let loose enough vocally. Good song overall, and she gets into it more as she goes along. Lambert has a great set of vocal chords for sure. Blake sure loves her version as he claps enthusiastically after Lambert's done.

8:02 p.m. Martina McBride helps in the ensemble singing of You Make Me Feel Like a Natural Woman. Christina Aguilera has most of the vocals and sounds soulful and heartfelt. McBride then takes lead on Till You Come Back to Me in her soulful way. She's not the powerhouse of Aguilera, but she has a powerful voice. The others get a chance to shine as well with other Aretha songs.

I got to say that of the earlier action tonight,which was prior to the prime time TV shindig, the win by Mavis Staples for Best Americana Album was quite surprising. She gave a great speech, which was available on line on the Grammys web site via YouTube. Her talk was very emotional and heartfelt. However, it was quite surprising that she took the award over the likes of Rosanne Cash for "The List' and Robert Plant for "Band of Joy," both real good CDs. Who knows? Maybe they split the vote. With Willie Nelson and Los Lobos also nominated, I would have thought that Staples was the darkest of dark horses. Guess not.

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