Alumni Earn 30 Grammy Nominations

Liz Burg
December 14, 2011

The National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences nominated 25 Berklee alumni and faculty for a total of 30 Grammy Awards. The nominees were recognized for their outstanding contributions across the spectrum of music, including pop, rock, hip-hop, alternative, jazz, and Latin. Producers, engineers, and arrangers were also nominated. To date, Berklee alumni have won 205 Grammy Awards. The 54th annual Grammy Awards will be held on Sunday, February 12, 2012 and broadcast on CBS at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT.

Alumni and faculty members Terri Lyne Carrington '83, percussion professor and artistic director for the Berklee BeanTown Jazz Festival, and Joe Lovano '72, Berklee's Gary Burton Jazz Chair in Jazz Performance, are each nominated for an award. Carrington's new album, The Mosaic Project, is nominated for Best Jazz Vocal Album. If she wins, this will be her first Grammy Award. Lovano's album, Bird Songs, is nominated for Best Jazz Instrumental Album. If he wins, this will be his second Grammy Award.

Berklee alumni boast nominations in the prestigious top three categories. Engineer Miles Walker '04 is nominated for his work on Katy Perry's Firework, up for the top Grammy Award, Record of the Year, and he is nominated for his work on Rihanna's Loud, which is up for Album of the Year. Fellow engineer Jeffrey Villanueva '07 along with producer Makeba Riddick '99 are also up for Album of the Year for their work on Loud. A fourth Berklee alumnus, engineer Thomas Ware '91, is also nominated for Album of the Year for his work on Lady Gaga's Born This Way. Two Berklee alumni are nominated for Song of the Year. Songwriter Claude Kelly's '02 work on Bruno Mars's hit Grenade earned him the nomination, while songwriter Jeff Bhasker '99 is nominated for writing Kanye West, Rihanna, Kid Cudi, and Fergie's hit All of the Lights. Kelly and Bhasker are each nominated for additional awards: Best R&B Song and Best Rap Song respectively.

A number of Berklee alumni are up for prestigious performance-based awards spanning a range of genres. John Petrucci '86, John Myung '86, and Mike Portnoy '86, members of the group Dream Theater, are nominated for Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance. Gillian Welch '92 is nominated for Best Folk Album, and Susan Tedeschi '91 and Mark Rivers '89, members of the Tedeschi Trucks Band, are nominated for Best Blues Album. Bassist Mark Kelley '03, member of The Roots, is nominated for Best Traditional R&B Performance.

Other nominees include artists Tierney Sutton '87 and Christian Jacob '86 for Best Jazz Vocal Album and Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s), composer Ryan Shore '96 for Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media, and Nicky Sanders '02 of the Steep Canyon Rangers for Best Bluegrass Album.

Berklee alumni and faculty also contributed to a handful of nominated items, including dean of continuing education Debbie Cavalier '87 and faculty technology services manager Michael Carrera '91, whose song is part of a compilation album nominated for Best Children's Album. Seth Glier '08 performed on The Next Right Thing, is nominated for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical. Tom Schick '95 mixed Wilco's album, The Whole Love, which is nominated for Best Rock Album. 

A complete list for the Berklee alumni and faculty nominees for the 54th Annual Grammy Awards follows.

Category 1 - Record of the Year

Engineer Miles Walker '04 - "Firework" by Katy Perry

Category 2 - Album of the Year

Producer Makeba Riddick '99 - Loud by Rihanna

Engineer Miles Walker '04 - Loud by Rihanna

Engineer Jeffrey Villanueva '07 - Loud by Rihanna

Engineer Tom Ware '91 - Born This Way by Lady Gaga

Category 3 - Song of the Year

Songwriter Claude Kelly '02- "Grenade" by Bruno Mars

Songwriter Jeff Bhasker '99 - "All of the Lights" by Kanye West, Rihanna, Kid Cudi, and Fergie)

Category 13 - Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance

Group Dream Theater (John Petrucci '86, John Myung '86, Mike Portnoy '86) - "On The Backs of Angels"

Category 18 - Best Traditional R&B Performance

Artist Mark Kelley '03 (member of The Roots) - with Betty Wright for "Surrender"

Category 19 - Best R&B Song

Songwriter Claude Kelly '02 - "Pieces of Me" by Ledisi

Category 23 - Best Rap Song

Songwriter Jeff Bhasker '99 - "All of the Lights" by Kanye West, Rihanna, Kid Cudi, and Fergie

Category 31 - Best Jazz Vocal Album

Artist Terri Lyne Carrington '83 - The Mosaic Project

Artist Tierney Sutton '87 - American Road

Artist Christian Jacob '86 - American Road

Category 32 - Best Jazz Instrumental Album

Artist Joe Lovano '72 - with Us Five for Bird Songs

Category 33 - Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album

Artist Miguel Zenón '98 - Alma Adentro: The Puerto Rican Songbook

Category 44 - Best Bluegrass Album

Artist Nicky Sanders '02 (member of The Steep Canyon Rangers) -with Steve Martin for Rare Bird Alert

Category 45 - Best Blues Album

Artist Susan Tedeschi '91 - Revelator

Artist Mark Rivers '89 - Revelator

Category 46 - Best Folk Album

Artist Gillian Welch '92 - The Harrow & The Harvest

Category 53 - Best Musical Theater Album

Producer and Composer/Lyricist Trey Parker '88  - The Book of Mormon

Producer Stephen Oremus '92 - The Book of Mormon

Category 55 - Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media

Composer Ryan Shore '96 - The Shrine

Category 59 - Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s)

Arranger Christian Jacob '87 - "On Broadway"

Arranger Tierney Sutton '86 - "On Broadway"

Category 68 - Best Engineered Album, Classical

Engineer Byeong-Joon Hwang '99 - Aldridge: Elmer Gantry

Mastering Engineer Jesse Lewis '93 - Aldrige: Elmer Gantry

Mastering Engineer Joe Lambert '04 - Mackey: Lonely Motel - Music from Slide