Winners

11th Annual GRAMMY Awards (1968)

For the 11th Annual GRAMMY Awards, the live presentation ceremony and “The Best On Record” special were linked as never before—bringing the show one step closer to the live telecast that would follow in two years. The winner for Record Of The Year was not announced during the awards dinner so that the winner could instead be revealed during the NBC special that aired nearly two months later on May 5. To accomplish this, five separate awards announcements and acceptance speeches were taped. Just an hour before air time, a network official opened the envelope and instructed a machine operator to insert the correct reel into the master tape. The decision proved somewhat controversial. Writing in the Los Angeles Times, staff writer Wayne Warga reported that when Los Angeles Chapter President Irving Townsend announced at the awards dinner that an award was being held back to help ratings, “The audience booed him. Fortunately, nobody threw anything. This was probably because the waiters had wisely cleared the tables.” Apparently performances by Jackie DeShannon, Lou Rawls, Tommy Boyce & Bobby Hart and Bill Medley were far better received.

There was no booing whatsoever when “The Best On Record” finally aired—indeed this edition of “The Best On Record: The GRAMMY Awards Show” felt downright giddy thanks in part to the presence of opening and closing act Dan Rowan and Dick Martin whose “Laugh-In” show had become the comedic rage since its debut in 1968. Interestingly, “Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In” was—like “The Best On Record”—produced by George Schlatter, a synergy that lent the proceeding a certain “Laugh-In” like, slightly off-color, “sock-it-to-me” charm.

Accordingly, comedians figured quite prominently in this hour of TV. Flip Wilson introduced Jeannie C. Riley’s performance of “Harper Valley P.T.A.”—a winner for Best Country Vocal Performance, Female, and a nominee in the still open Record Of The Year category—by declaring, “Country music has come a long way since the washboard and kazoo. Nowadays they use electric washboards and electric kazoos.” Don Rickles appeared alongside Tiny Tim for a surreal introduction of a fascinating and unusual clip of another of the Record Of The Year nominees—Simon & Garfunkel’s “Mrs. Robinson.” Asked to film a performance of the song, Simon & Garfunkel suggested instead that they would prefer to film a segment at an empty Yankee Stadium—a seeming nod to Joe DiMaggio who figured in the song’s lyrics. Executive Producer Ted Bergmann recalls Paul Simon saying, “Art and I will run the bases while you play ‘Mrs. Robinson.’” The resulting clip is a fantastic, offbeat early rock video—a truly winning non-performance GRAMMY performance. Tommy Smothers introduced the Los Angeles cast of “Hair,” which then performed two songs from “The American Tribal Love Rock Musical,” spotlighting both Delores Hall and Jennifer Warnes, the latter of whom would return to win a couple GRAMMYs more than a decade later.  

It took a village—okay, actually the entire King Family—to introduce Best New Artist and Best Contemporary Pop Vocal Performance, Male, winner Jose Feliciano, and the singer/guitarist did the whole family proud with a powerful rendition of “Light My Fire.” Burt Bacharach introduced a strong performance of “Do You Know The Way To San Jose?” by Dionne Warwick—GRAMMY winner for Best Contemporary Pop Vocal Performance, Female. “She has a voice and a style and a warmth that gives any song a very special meaning,” he said, clearly from personal experience. Mama Cass, meanwhile, introduced a performance clip of “Hey Jude” by the Beatles—another nominee for Record Of The Year.

Toward the end of “The Best On Record,” Henry Mancini appeared to introduce “the big one we’ve all waited for” — the winner of Record Of The Year. Ultimately Simon & Garfunkel’s “Mrs. Robinson” prevailed over not only the Beatles’ “Hey Jude,” but also Jeannie C. Riley’s “Harper Valley P.T.A.,” Glen Campbell’s “Wichita Lineman” and Bobby Goldsboro’s “Honey.” Accordingly, the pre-taped speech came from Art Garfunkel who, wearing a tux but holding a baseball, graciously — and theoretically — accepted on behalf of producer and engineer Roy Halee and “my best friend Paul Simon who wouldn’t wear a tuxedo today.” 

Record Of The Year
 
winner
Paul Simon, GRAMMY winner
Mrs. Robinson

Simon And Garfunkel* (Art Garfunkel*, Paul Simon*), artist. Roy Halee & Simon And Garfunkel* (Art Garfunkel*, Paul Simon*), producers.

Album Of The Year
 
winner
Glen Campbell, GRAMMY winner
By The Time I Get To Phoenix

Glen Campbell, artist. Al De Lory, producer.

Song Of The Year
 
winner
Little Green Apples

Bobby Russell, songwriter.

Best New Artist Of The Year
 
winner
Jose Feliciano
Best Instrumental Arrangement
 
winner
Classical Gas

Mike Post, arranger.

Best Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s)
 
winner
Mac Arthur Park

Jimmy L. Webb, arranger.

Best Engineered Recording (Non-Classical)
 
winner
Wichita Lineman

Hugh Davies & Joe Polito, engineers.

Best Album Cover
 
winner
Underground

John Berg & Richard Mantel, art directors. Horn Grinner Studios, photographer.

Best Album Notes
 
winner
Johnny Cash At Folsom Prison

Johnny Cash, album notes writer.

Best Contemporary Pop Vocal Performance, Female
 
winner
Do You Know The Way To San Jose?

Dionne Warwick, artist.

Best Contemporary Pop Vocal Performance, Male
 
winner
Light My Fire

Jose Feliciano, artist.

Best Contemporary Pop Performance - Vocal Duo Or Group
 
winner
Paul Simon, GRAMMY winner
Mrs. Robinson

Simon And Garfunkel (Art Garfunkel, Paul Simon), artist.

Best Contemporary Pop Performance, Chorus
 
winner
Mission Impossible/Norwegian Wood Medley

Alan Copeland, choir director.

Best Contemporary Pop Performance, Instrumental
 
winner
Classical Gas

Mason Williams, artist.

Best Rhythm & Blues Vocal Performance, Female
 
winner
Chain Of Fools

Aretha Franklin, artist.

Best Rhythm & Blues Vocal Performance, Male
 
winner
(Sittin' On) The Dock Of The Bay

Otis Redding, artist.

Best Rhythm & Blues Performance By A Duo Or Group, Vocal Or Instrumental
 
winner
Cloud Nine

Temptations, artist.

Best Rhythm & Blues Song
 
winner
(Sittin' On) The Dock Of The Bay

Otis Redding & Steve Cropper, songwriters.

Best Country Vocal Performance, Female
 
winner
Harper Valley P.T.A.

Jeannie C. Riley, artist.

Best Country Vocal Performance, Male
 
winner
Folsom Prison Blues

Johnny Cash, artist.

Best Country Performance, Duo Or Group - Vocal Or Instrumental
 
winner
Foggy Mountain Breakdown

Flatt And Scruggs (Lester Flatt, Earl Scruggs), artist.

Best Country Song
 
winner
Little Green Apples

Bobby Russell, songwriter.

Best Sacred Performance
 
winner
Beautiful Isle Of Somewhere

Jake Hess, artist.

Best Gospel Performance
 
winner
The Happy Gospel Of The Happy Goodmans

Happy Goodman Family (Johnny Cook, Rusty Goodman, Sam Goodman, Tanya Goodman), artist.

Best Soul Gospel Performance
 
winner
The Soul Of Me

Dottie Rambo, artist.

Best Folk Performance
 
winner
Both Sides Now

Judy Collins, artist.

Best Instrumental Theme
 
winner
Classical Gas

Mason Williams, composer.

Best Original Score Written For A Motion Picture Or A Television Special
 
winner
Paul Simon, GRAMMY winner
The Graduate

Dave Grusin & Paul Simon, composers.

Best Score From An Original Cast Show Album
 
winner
Hair

Galt MacDermott, Gerome Ragni & James Rado, composers. Andy Wiswell, producer.

Best Comedy Recording
 
winner
To Russell, My Brother, Whom I Slept With

Bill Cosby, artist.

Best Spoken Word Recording
 
winner
Lonesome Cities

Rod McKuen, narrator.

Best Instrumental Jazz Performance - Small Group Or Soloist With Small Group
 
winner
Bill Evans At The Montreux Jazz Festival

Bill Evans, artist.

Best Instrumental Jazz Performance - Large Group Or Soloist With Large Group
 
winner
Duke Ellington, GRAMMY winner
And His Mother Called Him Bill

Duke Ellington, artist.

Best Classical Performance - Orchestra
 
winner
Pierre Boulez, GRAMMY winner
Boulez Conducts Debussy (La Mer; Prelude A L'Apres-Midi D'Un Faune; Jeux)

Pierre Boulez, artist.

Best Chamber Music Performance
 
winner
Glory Of Gabrieli Vol. II - Canzonas For Brass, Winds, Strings And Organ

E. Power Biggs, Edward Tarr Brass Ensemble & Vittorio Negri, artists.

Best Opera Recording
 
winner
Mozart: Cosi Fan Tutte

Erich Leinsdorf, artist. Richard Mohr, producer.

Best Performance - Instrumental Soloist Or Soloists (With Or Without Orchestra)
 
winner
Vladimir Horowitz
Horowitz On Television (Chopin, Scriabin, Scarlatti, Horowitz)
Best Choral Performance (Other Than Opera)
 
winner
The Glory Of Gabrieli

Vittorio Negri, artist. George Bragg & Gregg Smith, choir directors.

Best Vocal Soloist Performance
 
winner
Rossini: Rarities

Montserrat Caballe, artist.

Best Engineered Recording - Classical
 
winner
Mahler: Symphony No. 9 In D

Gordon Parry, engineer.