Louisiana is hosting its own virtual Grammy celebration in partnership with the Grammy Museum. While the event carries the Grammy name, it's not an award show. It won't be the dream-crushing or dream-fulfilling contest that coronates an artist with a 6-pound, 24k gold electroplated gramophone trophy. It's not about winners or losers, but rather an evening of live performances, behind-the-scenes glimpses, and exclusive interviews with Grammy nominated musicians who call Louisiana home like Bobby Rush, the New Orleans Nightcrawlers, Sweet Cecilia, and Kenny Wayne Shepherd with Buddy Flett.
The one-hour-long, free event will take place on Tuesday, March 9 at 7 p.m. Hosted by Lt. Governor Billy Nungesser and the Louisiana Office of Tourism, Louisiana Travel will be simulcasting the celebration across its social media channels: Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. Additionally, the event will be hosted on the Grammy Museum's official streaming service, COLLECTION:live, as well as its Facebook page.
"Louisiana is home to some of the greatest music in the world," Nungesser said in the press release about the event. To emphasize this, Louisiana Travel's website has an entire page dedicated to Louisiana Grammy Award Winners. The lengthy list includes Louis Armstrong, Ani DiFranco, Lil Wayne, Britney Spears, Hank Williams, Lucinda Williams, and Buddy Guy, as well as artists who have made Louisiana their home like Solange and Frank Ocean.
"Every year talented Louisiana artists are nominated for Grammys and we are excited to celebrate these artists and share performances by some of our nominees so you can Feed Your Soul with our one-of-a-kind music right in your own home," Nungesser continued.
"Feed Your Soul," as Nungesser used it, is a winking reference to Louisiana Travel's slogan. In order to make the event a sight-seeing affair, each artist will perform in a historic venue. Homer-born Bobby Rush will perform from the historic Delta Music Museum in Ferriday. Rush's first album, Rush Hour, came out in 1979, though the local favorite didn't land a Grammy nomination until 2001 when Hoochie Man was nominated for Best Contemporary Blues Album. Rush has a total of six Grammy nominations and one Grammy win for his 2017 album Porcupine Meat.
The New Orleans Nightcrawlers received a 2020 Grammy nomination in the Best Regional Roots Music Album category for their album Atmosphere. Their performance will be set in the whimsical Music Box Village in New Orleans.
Sweet Cecilia's set will stream live from the Blue Moon Saloon, Lafayette's premier honky tonk. The family trio (named after their hometown of Cecilia, Louisiana) was nominated last year in the Best Regional Roots category for their album A Tribute to Al Berard.
Kenny Wayne Shepard was born in Shreveport, has received three Grammy nominations for his work with the Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band, and also happens to be Mel Gibson's son-in-law. Buddy Flett worked with Shepard on the 2010 Grammy-nominated Best Contemporary Blues Album Live! In Chicago. Together, Shepherd and Flett will take the stage at the National Historic Landmark where Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley once performed: the Shreveport Municipal Auditorium.
"It's important for us at the Grammy Museum to highlight all aspects of music history and the cultural impact behind those genres," Michael Sticka, president of the Grammy Museum, said. "We're excited to partner with the great state of Louisiana during Grammy Week to highlight Grammy-nominated, Louisiana-based musicians who have inspired the next generation of artists."