32nd Annual GRAMMY Awards (1989)

When the final award for Record Of The Year was presented to “Wind Beneath My Wings,” Bette Midler charmingly summed up this whole 32nd Annual GRAMMY night by gleefully proclaiming, “Hey Bonnie Raitt, I got one too!”

Coming fittingly just in the nick of time, veteran rootsy singer and guitar-slinger Raitt thoroughly enjoyed an altogether satisfying GRAMMY night — winning Album Of The Year for her Nick Of Time comeback, along with Best Pop Vocal Performance, Female, Best Rock Vocal Performance, Female, and Best Traditional Blues Recording for a duet with John Lee Hooker (“I’m In The Mood,” on Hooker’s The Healer). Having famously bounced back from substance abuse problems and having been dropped by her former label, Raitt won her first four GRAMMYs ever in just a matter of hours — a global media event that would subsequently help make the Don Was-produced Nick Of Time an even bigger hit. For her part, Raitt — who performed “Thing Called Love” on the show — was increasingly shocked as her awards piled up. “This is a real miracle for me after all this time,” she said. Raitt graciously thanked her peers for nominating her in previous years “when things weren’t going so well.” Alluding gracefully to her past troubles, she also noted, “And mostly I’d like to thank God for bringing me to this at a time when I could truly appreciate it.”

The other moving centerpiece of this first GRAMMY show held in the ’90s — wonderfully hosted by Garry Shandling — was a suitably grand and heartfelt salute to one of the night’s Lifetime Achievement Award recipients, Paul McCartney.

Speaking lovingly for her boomer generation, Meryl Streep presented the tribute, first recalling her own experience seeing the Beatles at Shea Stadium in 1965 from the 116th row with an “I Love You Forever Paul” sign in her hands. “I had a better view of New Jersey than I did of the little stage that was set up on centerfield,” she said with a smile. Still, Streep beautifully recalled seeing “those four boys running across the grass to the stage” and “the roar that just rose up.” Streep then introduced two of McCartney’s own favorites to perform two of his songs. Ray Charles served up the funkiest version ever of “Eleanor Rigby,” while Stevie Wonder offered up a believably optimistic version of “We Can Work It Out.”

Following one of the more extended standing ovations in all of GRAMMY history, McCartney took the stage, kissed Streep, adding, “Thank you Meryl, I remember you well — row 116.” McCartney then spoke eloquently of his love for the music of Charles and Wonder, of environmental challenges the world faced, of his family, and of his pleasure in joining “the best band in the world — thanks John, George and Ringo for being beautiful people.” McCartney concluded memorably, “I’d like to thank you all for being in my dream.”

Yet on an evening where the sublime dominated splendidly, there was one unfortunate yet notable touch of the ridiculous when soon-to-be-exposed lip synchers Milli Vanilli were presented with the GRAMMY for Best New Artist. The award was officially withdrawn later in 1990 when it was confirmed by producer Frank Farian that on the supposed duo’s debut album All Or Nothing, “frontmen” Fab Morvan and Rob Pilatus had actually sang not all but nothing. The pair did however dance energetically and manage to at least partially mouth the lyrics to their smash “Girl You Know It’s True” during the show (about which Shandling explained, “I was supposed to be in that number. I wouldn’t wear the extensions.”).

The 32nd Annual GRAMMY Awards was also historic for featuring the first-ever televised rap award (the category had been established the year prior). First, during a performance of “I Think I Can Beat Mike Tyson” by DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince, Will Smith dedicated the group’s performance “to all the rappers last year that stood with us and helped us to earn the right to be on this stage tonight.” Then teen dreams New Kids On The Block presented the award, with the group’s Donnie Wahlberg respectfully name-checking hip-hop pioneers Afrika Bambaataa, Grandmaster Flash, Grandmaster Melle Mel, Run-D.M.C. and Kurtis Blow, before handing out the award for Best Rap Performance to Young MC for “Bust A Move.” Adding a little hip-hop edge to the proceedings, Public Enemy’s Flavor Flav proceeded to join Young MC onstage uninvited. “I’d like to thank Flavor Flav for breaking up the monotony of my acceptance speech,” Young MC noted.

The night featured many other musical highlights, including a performance by Lifetime Achievement recipient Miles Davis, a short impromptu version of “Straighten Up And Fly Right” by Ella Fitzgerald and Natalie Cole on a night when the late Nat “King” Cole was also honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award, and a haunting rendition of “Summertime” from Porgy And Bess by Metropolitan Opera star Harolyn Blackwell.

The 32nd Annual GRAMMYs also included perhaps the single finest dirty joke inspired by a format change in all of music history. As Shandling memorably explained, “Compact discs are overtaking the business, of course, which is ruining my life because I make love to music and I cannot find 45s anymore.”

Record Of The Year
Wind Beneath My Wings

Bette Midler

Bette Midler, artist. Arif Mardin, producer.

Album Of The Year
Nick Of Time

Bonnie Raitt

Bonnie Raitt, artist. Don Was, producer.

Song Of The Year
Wind Beneath My Wings

Jeff Silbar & Larry Henley, songwriters (Bette Midler)

Jeff Silbar & Larry Henley, songwriters.

Best Pop Vocal Performance, Female
Nick Of Time

Bonnie Raitt

Bonnie Raitt, artist.

Best Pop Vocal Performance, Male
Michael Bolton
How Am I Supposed To Live Without You

Michael Bolton, artist.

Best Pop Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal
Don't Know Much

Linda Ronstadt & Aaron Neville

Aaron Neville & Linda Ronstadt, artists.

Best Pop Instrumental Performance
Healing Chant

Neville Brothers

Neville Brothers (Aaron Neville, Art Neville, Charles Neville, Cyril Neville), artist.

Best Rock Vocal Performance, Female
Nick Of Time

Bonnie Raitt

Bonnie Raitt, artist.

Best Rock Vocal Performance, Male
The End Of The Innocence

Don Henley

Don Henley, artist.

Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal
Bob Dylan, George Harrison
Traveling Wilburys Volume One

Traveling Wilburys

Traveling Wilburys (Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Jeff Lynne, Roy Orbison, Tom Petty), artist.

Best Rock Instrumental Performance
Jeff Beck
Jeff Beck's Guitar Shop with Terry Bozzio & Tony Hymas

Jeff Beck , Terry Bozzio & Tony Hymas

Jeff Beck , Terry Bozzio & Tony Hymas, artists.

Best Hard Rock Performance
Cult Of Personality

Living Colour

Living Colour (William Calhoun, Corey Glover, Vernon Reid, Muzz Skillings), artist.

Best Metal Performance

Metallica (Kirk Hammett, James Hetfield, Jason Newsted, Lars Ulrich), artist.

Best R&B Vocal Performance, Female
Giving You The Best That I Got

Anita Baker

Anita Baker, artist.

Best R&B Vocal Performance, Male
Every Little Step

Bobby Brown

Bobby Brown, artist.

Best R&B Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal
Back To Life

Soul II Soul Featuring Caron Wheeler

Caron Wheeler & Soul II Soul, artists.

Best R&B Instrumental Performance
African Dance

Soul II Soul

Soul II Soul, artist.

Best Rhythm & Blues Song
If You Don't Know Me By Now

Kenny Gamble & Leon Huff, songwriters (Simply Red)

Kenny Gamble & Leon Huff, songwriters.

Best Rap Performance
Bust A Move

Young MC

Young MC, artist.

Best New Age Performance
Passion - Music For The Last Temptation Of Christ

Peter Gabriel

Peter Gabriel, artist.

Best Jazz Fusion Performance
Pat Metheny
Letter From Home

Pat Metheny Group

Pat Metheny Group (Pedro Aznar, Armando Marcal, Lyle Mays, Pat Metheny, Steve Rodby, Paul Wertico), artist.

Best Jazz Vocal Performance, Female
Blues On Broadway

Ruth Brown

Ruth Brown, artist.

Best Jazz Vocal Performance, Male
When Harry Met Sally

Harry Connick, Jr.

Harry Connick Jr., artist.

Best Jazz Vocal Performance, Duo Or Group
Dr. John
Makin' Whoopee

Dr. John & Rickie Lee Jones

Dr. John & Rickie Lee Jones, artists.

Best Jazz Instrumental Performance, Soloist (On A Jazz Recording)

Miles Davis

Miles Davis, soloist.

Best Jazz Instrumental Performance, Group
Chick Corea
Chick Corea Akoustic Band

Chick Corea Akoustic Band

Chick Corea Akoustic Band (Chick Corea, John Pattitucci, Dave Weckl), artist.

Best Jazz Instrumental Performance, Big Band

Miles Davis

Miles Davis, artist.

Best Country Vocal Performance, Female
Absolute Torch And Twang

k.d. lang

k.d. lang, artist.

Best Country Vocal Performance, Male
Lyle Lovett And His Large Band

Lyle Lovett

Lyle Lovett, artist.

Best Country Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal
Will The Circle Be Unbroken Vol. 2

Nitty Gritty Dirt Band

Nitty Gritty Dirt Band (Bob Carpenter, Jimmie Fadden, Jeff Hanna, Jimmy Ibbotson), artist.

Best Country Vocal Collaboration
There's A Tear In My Beer

Hank Williams, Jr., & Hank Williams, Sr.

Hank Williams Jr. & Hank Williams Sr., artists.

Best Country Instrumental Performance
Amazing Grace

Randy Scruggs

Randy Scruggs, artist.

Best Bluegrass Recording
The Valley Road

Nitty Gritty Dirt Band & Bruce Hornsby

Bruce Hornsby & Nitty Gritty Dirt Band (Bob Carpenter, Jimmie Fadden, Jeff Hanna, Jimmy Ibbotson), artists.

Best Country Song
After All This Time

Rodney Crowell, songwriter (Rodney Crowell)

Rodney Crowell, songwriter.

Best Gospel Vocal Performance, Female
CeCe Winans
Don't Cry

CeCe Winans, artist.

Best Gospel Vocal Performance, Male
BeBe Winans

BeBe Winans, artist.

Best Gospel Vocal Performance By A Duo, Group, Choir Or Chorus
The Savior Is Waiting

Take 6

Take 6 (Alvin Chea, Cedric Dent, Mark Kibble, Claude V. McKnight III, David Thomas, Mervyn E. Warren), artist.

Best Soul Gospel Vocal Performance, Male Or Female
As Long As We're Together

Al Green

Al Green, artist.

Best Soul Gospel Vocal Performance Duo, Group, Choir Or Chorus
Let Brotherly Love Continue

Daniel Winans

Daniel Winans, artist.

Best Latin Pop Performance
Cielito Lindo

Jose Feliciano

Jose Feliciano, artist.

Best Tropical Latin Performance
Ritmo En El Corazon

Celia Cruz & Ray Barretto

Celia Cruz & Ray Barretto, artists.

Best Mexican-American Performance
La Pistola y El Corazon

Los Lobos

Los Lobos (Steve Berlin, David Hidalgo, Conrad Lozano, Louie Perez, Cesar Rosas), artist.

Best Traditional Blues Recording
I'm In The Mood

Bonnie Raitt & John Lee Hooker

Bonnie Raitt & John Lee Hooker, artists.

Best Contemporary Blues Recording
In Step

Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble

Stevie Ray Vaughan And Double Trouble (Chris "Whipper" Layton, Tommy Shannon, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Reese Wynans), artist.

Best Traditional Folk Recording
Le Mystere Des Voix Bulgares, Vol. II

(Bulgarian State Female Vocal Choir)

Marcel Cellier, producer.

Best Contemporary Folk Recording
Indigo Girls

Indigo Girls

Indigo Girls (Amy Ray, Emily Saliers), artist.

Best Polka Recording
Jimmy Sturr
All In My Love For You

Jimmy Sturr, artist.

Best Reggae Recording
Ziggy Marley
One Bright Day

Ziggy Marley  & The Melody Makers

Ziggy Marley And The Melody Makers (Cedella Marley, Sharon Marley, Stephen Marley, Ziggy Marley), artist.

Best Recording For Children
The Rock-A-Bye Collection, Vol. 1

Tanya Goodman

Tanya Goodman, artist. David R. Lehman & J. Aaron Brown, producers.

Best Comedy Recording
P.D.Q. Bach: 1712 Overture & Other Musical Assaults

Peter Schickele

Peter Schickele, artist.

Best Spoken Word Or Non-Musical Recording
It's Always Something

Gilda Radner

Gilda Radner, narrator.

Best Musical Cast Show Album
Jerome Robbins' Broadway

Jason Alexander, Debbie Shapiro & Robert La Fasse

Jay David Saks, producer.

Best Instrumental Composition
The Batman Theme

Sinfonia Of London Orchestra

Danny Elfman, composer.

Best Album Of Original Instrumental Background Score Written For A Motion Picture Or Television
The Fabulous Baker Boys

Dave Grusin

Dave Grusin, composer.

Best Song Written Specifically For A Motion Picture Or Television
Let The River Run (From Working Girl)

Carly Simon, songwriter (Carly Simon)

Carly Simon, songwriter.

Best Music Video - Short Form
Michael Jackson
Leave Me Alone

Michael Jackson, artist. Michael Jackson, producer. Jim Blashfield, video director. Frank DiLeo, Jerry Kramer, Jim Blashfield & Paul Diener, video producers.

Best Music Video - Long Form
Rhythm Nation 1814

Janet Jackson

Janet Jackson, artist. Dominic Sena, Jonathan Dayton & Valerie Faris, video directors. Aris McGarry, Jonathan Dayton & Valerie Faris, video producers.

Best Arrangement On An Instrumental
Suite From The Milagro Beanfield War

Dave Grusin

Dave Grusin, arranger.

Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocals
My Funny Valentine

Michelle Pfeiffer

Dave Grusin, arranger.

Best Album Package
Sound + Vision

David Bowie

Roger Gorman, art director.

Best Album Notes
Bird - The Complete Charlie Parker On Verve

Charlie Parker

Phil Schaap, album notes writer.

Best Historical Album
Chuck Berry - The Chess Box

Chuck Berry

Andy McKaie, producer.

Best Engineered Recording - Non-Classical
Cry Like A Rainstorm - Howl Like The Wind

Linda Ronstadt

George Massenburg, engineer.

Producer Of The Year
Peter Asher

Peter Asher

Peter Asher, producer.

Best Classical Album
Bartók: 6 String Quartets

Emerson String Quartet

Emerson String Quartet (Eugene Drucker, Lawrence Dutton, David Finckel, Philip Setzer), artist. Wolf Erichson, producer.

Best Orchestral Performance
Mahler: Symphony No. 3 In D Minor

Leonard Bernstein, conductor

Leonard Bernstein, conductor.

Best Opera Recording
Wagner: Die Walkuere

James Levine, conductor; Gary Lakes, Kurt Moll, James Morris, Jessye Norman, Hildegard Behrens & Christa Ludwig

Christa Ludwig, Gary Lakes, Hildegard Behrens, James Morris, Jessye Norman & Kurt Moll, artists. James Levine, conductor. Cord Garben, producer.

Best Choral Performance (Other Than Opera)
Britten: War Requiem

Robert Shaw, conductor

Robert Shaw, conductor.

Best Classical Performance, Instrumental Soloist (With Orchestra)
Yo-Yo Ma
Barber: Cello Concerto, Op. 22/Britten: Symphony For Cello And Orchestra, Op. 68

Yo-Yo Ma, artist.

Best Classical Performance - Instrumental Soloist (Without Orchestra)
Bach: English Suites

Andras Schiff

Andras Schiff, artist.

Best Chamber Music Performance
Bartók: 6 String Quartets

Emerson String Quartet

Emerson String Quartet (Eugene Drucker, Lawrence Dutton, David Finckel, Philip Setzer), artist.

Best Classical Vocal Soloist Performance
Knoxville - Summer Of 1915 (Music Of Barber, Menotti, Harbison, Stravinsky)

Dawn Upshaw

Dawn Upshaw, artist.

Best Contemporary Composition
Reich: Different Trains

Kronos Quartet

Steve Reich, composer.

Best Engineered Recording - Classical
Britten: War Requiem

Robert Shaw, conductor

Jack Renner, engineer.

Classical Producer Of The Year
Robert Woods
Robert Woods

Robert Woods, producer.