Winners

15th Annual GRAMMY Awards (1972)

(The following is an excerpt from And The GRAMMY Goes To...: The Official Story Of Music's Most Coveted Award.)

Like several other GRAMMY shows of the era, the 15th Annual GRAMMY Awards ceremony—broadcast live from Nashville’s Tennessee Theatre and hosted by Andy Williams—seems in retrospect to be an intermittently mind-blowing, impressively eclectic study in contrasts, from a first performance by the decidedly clean-cut Mike Curb Congregation to the Album Of The Year award going to The Concert For Bangladesh, the spiritual predecessor of such global pop goodwill efforts as USA for Africa, Live 8 and Live Aid.

Taking his cue from the previous year’s name-game jokes, host Andy Williams kidded about some songs that weren’t nominated—including “Last Tango In Paris” by Henry Kissinger, “One Less Bell To Answer” by heavyweight fighter Joe Frazier, “I Am Woman” by Alice Cooper (jokes about Cooper’s gender-bending name would become a running gag for the next few years) and Burt Reynolds’ version of “Superfly.”

He then introduced a convincing performance of “Your Mama Don’t Dance” by Loggins & Messina, nominees for Best New Artist. Immediately afterward, the 5th Dimension offered a singing presentation of the nominees and the award went to America on the strength of the megahit “A Horse With No Name,” with Dusty Springfield accepting on their behalf.

This night in Nashville then took a country turn with Charley Pride performing “Kiss An Angel Good Mornin’” followed by Loretta Lynn and Eddy Arnold presenting him with the GRAMMY for Best Country Vocal Performance, Male (it also nabbed Best Country Song for songwriter Ben Peters). The Staple Singers then gave one of the most inspiring and inspired performances of the night with their Stax soul gospel masterpiece, “I’ll Take You There,” with Mavis Staples in particularly fine form.

In arguably the night’s most unlikely pairing, the wonderfully tough-talking comedienne Moms Mabley was partnered with wholesome singer Johnny Mann of the Johnny Mann Singers to present the next award for Best R&B Vocal Performance By A Duo, Group Or Chorus. Donning her glasses and looking Mann over, Mabley told the crowd with perfect timing, “You all got to be kidding.” The award went to the Temptations for “Papa Was A Rolling Stone,” with their old friend Smokey Robinson accepting (the song would win three GRAMMYs on the night for the group, arranger Paul Riser, and songwriters Barrett Strong and Norman Whitfield).

The show’s mind-bending eclecticism continued for the rest of the night, from Donna Fargo singing the impossibly upbeat “Happiest Girl In The Whole USA” (and winning Best Country Vocal Performance, Female) to Curtis Mayfield and some funky interracial dancers in glitter Afros performing the gritty junkie lament “Freddie’s Dead” from Superfly. In between were some of the year’s biggest hits, including Mac Davis’ “Baby Don’t Get Hooked On Me,” and Gilbert O’Sullivan’s “Alone Again, Naturally.”

Other highlights of this GRAMMY evening included the great Johnny Cash delivering a little Recording Academy history like it was a great American train song. He described the organization as “fast-moving, creative and exciting like the recording industry itself. I’m Johnny Cash and I’m proud to be a part of it,” the Man In Black said in conclusion, as only he could. Close friends Harry Nilsson (who won Best Pop Vocal Performance, Male, for his version of Badfinger’s “Without You”) and Ringo Starr (who accepted the Album Of The Year award on behalf of George Harrison and the other Concert For Bangladesh participants) made a memorable award presentation that saw them reading their lines in nearly perfect unison.

And in a wonderful early display of feminism on the GRAMMYs, Helen Reddy sang her anthem “I Am Woman” then, in accepting the award for Best Pop Performance, Female, she finished with one of the greatest acceptance lines of all, “...And I would like to thank God because She makes everything possible.”

Record Of The Year
 
winner
The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face

Roberta Flack, artist. Joel Dorn, producer.

Album Of The Year
 
winner
Bob Dylan, GRAMMY winner, Eric Clapton, GRAMMY winner, George Harrison, GRAMMY winner, Ringo Starr, GRAMMY winner
The Concert For Bangla Desh

Billy Preston, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, George Harrison*, Klaus Voormann, Leon Russell, Ravi Shankar & Ringo Starr, artists. George Harrison* & Phil Spector, producers.

Song Of The Year
 
winner
The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face

Ewan MacColl, songwriter.

Best New Artist Of The Year
 
Best Instrumental Arrangement
 
winner
Theme From The French Connection

Don Ellis, arranger.

Best Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s)
 
winner
What Are You Doing The Rest Of Your Life?

Michel Legrand, arranger.

Best Engineered Recording - Non-Classical
 
winner
Moods

Armin Steiner, engineer.

Best Album Cover
 
winner
The Siegel-Schwall Band

Acy R. Lehman, art director. Harvey Dinnerstein, graphic artist.

Best Album Notes
 
winner
Tom T. Hall's Greatest Hits

Tom T. Hall, album notes writer.

Best Jazz Performance By A Soloist
 
winner
Alone At Last

Gary Burton, soloist.

Best Jazz Performance By A Group
 
winner
First Light

Freddie Hubbard, artist.

Best Jazz Performance By A Big Band
 
winner
Duke Ellington, GRAMMY winner
Toga Brava Suite

Duke Ellington, artist.

Best Pop Vocal Performance, Female
 
winner
I Am Woman

Helen Reddy, artist.

Best Pop Vocal Performance, Male
 
winner
Without You

Harry Nilsson, artist.

Best Pop Vocal Performance By A Duo, Group Or Chorus
 
winner
Where Is The Love

Donny Hathaway & Roberta Flack, artists.

Best Pop Instrumental Performance By An Instrumental Performer
 
winner
Outa-Space

Billy Preston, artist.

Best Pop Instrumental Performance By An Arranger, Composer, Orchestra And/Or Choral Leader
 
winner
Black Moses

Isaac Hayes, artist.

Best R&B Vocal Performance, Female
 
winner
Young, Gifted And Black

Aretha Franklin, artist.

Best R&B Vocal Performance, Male
 
winner
Me And Mrs. Jones

Billy Paul, artist.

Best R&B Vocal Performance By A Duo, Group Or Chorus
 
winner
Papa Was A Rollin' Stone

Temptations (Dennis Edwards, Melvin Franklin, Damon Harris, Richard Street, Otis Williams), artist.

Best R&B Instrumental Performance
 
winner
Papa Was A Rollin' Stone

Paul Riser & Temptations (Dennis Edwards, Melvin Franklin, Damon Harris, Richard Street, Otis Williams), artists.

Best Rhythm & Blues Song
 
winner
Papa Was A Rollin' Stone

Barrett Strong & Norman Whitfield, songwriters.

Best Soul Gospel Performance
 
winner
Amazing Grace

Aretha Franklin, artist.

Best Country Vocal Performance, Female
 
winner
Happiest Girl In The Whole USA

Donna Fargo, artist.

Best Country Vocal Performance, Male
 
winner
Charley Pride Sings Heart Songs

Charley Pride, artist.

Best Country Vocal Performance By A Duo Or Group
 
winner
Class Of '57

Statler Brothers, artist.

Best Country Instrumental Performance
 
winner
Charlie McCoy/The Real McCoy

Charlie McCoy, artist.

Best Country Song
 
winner
Kiss An Angel Good Mornin'

Ben Peters, songwriter.

Best Inspirational Performance
 
winner
He Touched Me

Elvis Presley, artist.

Best Gospel Performance (Other Than Soul Gospel)
 
winner
L-O-V-E

Blackwood Brothers (Cecil Blackwood, James Blackwood Jr., James Blackwood Sr., Tommy Fairchild, Pat Hoffmaster, Ken Turner), artist.

Best Ethnic Or Traditional Recording (Including Traditional Blues)
 
winner
The London Muddy Waters Session

Muddy Waters, artist.

Best Recording For Children
 
winner
The Electric Company

Bill Cosby & Rita Moreno, artists. Christopher Cerf, Joe Raposo & Lee Chamberlin, producers.

Best Comedy Recording
 
winner
FM And AM

George Carlin, artist.

Best Spoken Word Recording
 
winner
Lenny

Bruce Botnick, producer.

Best Instrumental Composition
 
winner
Brian's Song

Michel Legrand, composer.

Best Original Score Written For A Motion Picture Or A Television Special
 
winner
The Godfather

Nino Rota, composer.

Best Score From An Original Cast Show Album
 
winner
Don't Bother Me, I Can't Cope

Micki Grant, composer. Jerry Ragavoy, producer.

Best Classical Album
 
winner
Georg Solti, GRAMMY winner
Mahler: Symphony No. 8 In E Flat (Symphony Of A Thousand)

Georg Solti, artist. David Harvey, producer.

Best Classical Performance - Orchestra
 
winner
Georg Solti, GRAMMY winner
Mahler: Symphony No. 7 In E Minor

Georg Solti, artist.

Best Opera Recording
 
winner
Berlioz: Benvenuto Cellini

Colin Davis, artist. Erik Smith, producer.

Best Choral Performance, Classical (Other Than Opera)
 
winner
Georg Solti, GRAMMY winner
Mahler: Symphony No. 8 In E Flat (Symphony Of A Thousand)

Georg Solti, artist.

Best Chamber Music Performance
 
winner
Julian And John (Works By Lawes, Carulli, Albeniz, Granados)

John Christopher Williams & Julian Bream, artists.

Best Classical Performance - Instrumental Soloist Or Soloists (With Orchestra)
 
winner
Brahms: Piano Concerto No. 2 In B Flat

Artur Rubinstein, artist.

Best Classical Performance - Instrumental Soloist Or Soloists (Without Orchestra)
 
winner
Vladimir Horowitz, GRAMMY winner
Horowitz Plays Chopin
Best Classical Vocal Soloist Performance
 
winner
Brahms: Die Schone Magelone

Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, artist.

Best Album Notes (Classical)
 
winner
Vaughan Williams: Symphony No. 2 (A London Symphony)

James Lyons, album notes writer.

Best Engineered Recording (Classical)
 
winner
Mahler: Symphony No. 8 (Symphony Of A Thousand)

Gordon Parry & Kenneth Wilkinson, engineers.