One of the recording industry's most prestigious awards, the Grammy, is presented annually by the US Recording Academy. A Grammy is awarded by the Recording Academy's voting membership to honour excellence in the recording arts and sciences. It is truly a peer honour, awarded by and to artists and technical professionals for artistic or technical achievement, not sales or chart positions. The annual Grammy Awards presentation brings together thousands of creative and technical professionals in the recording industry from all over the world.
The 47th Grammy Awards are held on 13 February and will be aired on CBS in the US.
Grammy nomination and rave New York Times review for Andsnes
This year, two central Norwegian performers receive nominations based on their achievements in the last year. In the ‘Chamber Music Performance’ category pianist Leif Ove Andsnes is nominated with his ‘Bartok: Violin Sonatas Nos. 1 and 2’ (EMI Classics) that also features Christian Tetzlaff on violin. Other nominees in this category include ‘Adams: Road Movies’ by violinist Leila Josefowicz and pianist John Novacek, ‘Bridge: String Quartets Nos. 1 and 3, by the Maggini Quartet; ‘Machaut: Motets’ by the Hilliard Ensemble, and ‘Prokofiev: Cinderella -- Suite for Two Pianos/Ravel: Ma Mere L'Oye’ by pianists Martha Argerich and Mikhail Pletnev.
Another release that gives Andsnes acclaim is ‘Mozart: Piano Concertos Nos. 9, 18 (EMI Classics) that features the pianist in close interplay with the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra. Says The New York Times’ Anthony Tommassini: “This exquisite new recording may be the sleeper hit CD of the year… Those who know this remarkable Norwegian pianist’s playing will not be surprised by its vitality and beauty. His fingerwork is impressively articulate; every note matters in an Andsnes performance, and Mozart’s inner voice and bass lines come through with utter clarity and presence. But as usual, what most moves me about Mr. Andsnes is the self-effacing quality of his artistry. For all the sparkle, joy and imagination of his playing, these are elegantly restrained performances. Each interpretive turn and pianistic detail is at the service of the music. The Norwegian Chamber Orchestra has always been a top-notch ensemble, but the players sound palpably inspired here, as if they knew that something special was taking place in the Oslo church where the recording was made last year. Mr. Andsnes so beautifully captures the sprightly operatic touches of the Concerto No. 18 in B flat (K. 456) that I found myself wishing some opera company would invite him to conduct ‘Le Nozze di Figaro.”
Jan Garbarek’s week of accolades
In the ‘Contemporary Jazz Album’ category saxophone icon Jan Garbarek receives a nomination for his album ‘In Praise of Dreams’ released on ECM earlier this autumn. Garbarek is joined by outfit Fourplay nominated with their ‘Journey’ album, Bill Frisell with ‘Unspeakable’, Don Grusin and his ‘The Hang’ album and Roy Hargrove’s ‘The RH Factor’.
For Garbarek, this is the week of accolades. In addition to his Grammy nomination, Grabarek receives the Norwegian Arts Council’s honorary prize on 9 December. The prestigious award is given to notabilities of the cultural field for their outstanding artistic significance and lifetime achievements. Past recipients include composer Arne Nordheim, actor and director Liv Ullmann as well as violinist Arve Tellefsen. In a press statement the Arts Council Norway says: “With his starting point in afro-American jazz music, Jan Garbarek made a name for himself in the 60s with a personal and original form of expression. Early on, he gained domestic as well as international recognition. Garbarek held a central position among Norwegian musicians of this era, and his artistic achievements represented a solid foundation for the development of jazz and improvised music from the 70s to the present. Garbarek has managed to realise new sonorous aspects of the soprano and tenor saxophone, blazing the trail for musicians world-wide. His international focus and interplay with performers from various cultural backgrounds has generated a significant development of new forms of musical expression in a variety of genres.”
Leif Ove Andsnes, Pianist, Artist
Jan Garbarek, Jazz muscian, Saxophonist, Composer