1989 Grammy Winners

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
 
winner
Wind Beneath My Wings

Arif Mardin, producer

Album Of The Year
 
winner
Bonnie Raitt
Nick Of Time

Don Was, producer

Song Of The Year
 
winner
Wind Beneath My Wings

Larry Henley & Jeff Silbar, songwriters (Bette Midler)

Best Pop Vocal Performance, Female
 
winner
Bonnie Raitt
Nick Of Time
Best Pop Vocal Performance, Male
 
winner
Michael Bolton
How Am I Supposed To Live Without You
Best Pop Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal
 
Best Pop Instrumental Performance
 
Best Rock Vocal Performance, Female
 
winner
Bonnie Raitt
Nick Of Time
Best Rock Vocal Performance, Male
 
winner
The End Of The Innocence
Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal
 
winner
Traveling Wilburys Volume One
Best Rock Instrumental Performance
 
winner
Jeff Beck
Jeff Beck's Guitar Shop with Terry Bozzio & Tony Hymas
Best Hard Rock Performance
 
winner
Cult Of Personality
Best R&B Vocal Performance, Female
 
winner
Giving You The Best That I Got
Best R&B Vocal Performance, Male
 
winner
Every Little Step
Best R&B Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal
 
winner
Back To Life
Best R&B Instrumental Performance
 
winner
African Dance
Best Rhythm & Blues Song
 
winner
If You Don't Know Me By Now

Kenny Gamble & Leon Huff, songwriters (Simply Red)

Best Rap Performance
 
winner
Bust A Move
Best New Age Performance
 
winner
Peter Gabriel
Passion - Music For The Last Temptation Of Christ
Best Jazz Fusion Performance
 
winner
Letter From Home
Best Jazz Vocal Performance, Female
 
winner
Blues On Broadway
Best Jazz Vocal Performance, Male
 
winner
When Harry Met Sally

Harry Connick, Jr.

Best Jazz Vocal Performance, Duo Or Group
 
Best Jazz Instrumental Performance, Soloist (On A Jazz Recording)
 
winner
Miles Davis
Aura

Miles Davis, soloist

Best Jazz Instrumental Performance, Group
 
winner
Chick Corea Akoustic Band
Best Jazz Instrumental Performance, Big Band
 
Best Country Vocal Performance, Female
 
winner
Absolute Torch And Twang
Best Country Vocal Performance, Male
 
winner
Lyle Lovett And His Large Band
Best Country Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal
 
winner
Will The Circle Be Unbroken Vol. 2
Best Country Vocal Collaboration
 
winner
There's A Tear In My Beer

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

Best Country Instrumental Performance
 
winner
Amazing Grace
Best Country Song
 
winner
After All This Time

Rodney Crowell, songwriter (Rodney Crowell)

Best Gospel Vocal Performance, Female
 
Best Gospel Vocal Performance, Male
 
Best Gospel Vocal Performance By A Duo, Group, Choir Or Chorus
 
winner
The Savior Is Waiting
Best Soul Gospel Vocal Performance, Male Or Female
 
winner
As Long As We're Together
Best Soul Gospel Vocal Performance Duo, Group, Choir Or Chorus
 
winner
Let Brotherly Love Continue
Best Latin Pop Performance
 
winner
Cielito Lindo
Best Tropical Latin Performance
 
winner
Ritmo En El Corazon
Best Mexican-American Performance
 
winner
La Pistola y El Corazon
Best Traditional Blues Recording
 
Best Contemporary Blues Recording
 
winner
In Step

Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble

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

(Bulgarian State Female Vocal Choir)

Best Contemporary Folk Recording
 
winner
Indigo Girls
Best Polka Recording
 
winner
Jimmy Sturr
All In My Love For You
Best Reggae Recording
 
winner
Ziggy Marley
One Bright Day

Ziggy Marley & The Melody Makers

Best Recording For Children
 
winner
The Rock-A-Bye Collection, Vol. 1
Best Comedy Recording
 
winner
P.D.Q. Bach: 1712 Overture & Other Musical Assaults
Best Spoken Word Or Non-Musical Recording
 
winner
It's Always Something
Best Musical Cast Show Album
 
winner
Jerome Robbins' Broadway

Jay David Saks, producer (Jason Alexander, Debbie Shapiro & Robert La Fasse)

Best Instrumental Composition
 
winner
The Batman Theme

Danny Elfman, composer (Sinfonia Of London Orchestra)

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

Dave Grusin, composer (Dave Grusin)

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

Carly Simon, songwriter (Carly Simon)

Best Music Video - Short Form
 
winner
Michael Jackson
Leave Me Alone

Jim Blashfield, video director; Jim Blashfield, Paul Diener, Frank DiLeo & Jerry Kramer, video producers

Best Music Video - Long Form
 
winner
Rhythm Nation 1814

Jonathan Dayton, Valerie Faris & Dominic Sena, video directors; Jonathan Dayton, Valerie Faris & Aris McGarry, video producers

Best Arrangement On An Instrumental
 
winner
Suite From The Milagro Beanfield War

Dave Grusin, arranger (Dave Grusin)

Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocals
 
winner
My Funny Valentine

Dave Grusin, arranger (Michelle Pfeiffer)

Best Album Package
 
winner
Sound + Vision

Roger Gorman, art director (David Bowie)

Best Album Notes
 
winner
Bird - The Complete Charlie Parker On Verve

Phil Schaap, album notes writer (Charlie Parker)

Best Historical Album
 
winner
Chuck Berry - The Chess Box

(Chuck Berry)

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

George Massenburg, engineer (Linda Ronstadt)

Producer Of The Year
 
winner
Peter Asher
Best Classical Album
 
winner
Bartók: 6 String Quartets

Emerson String Quartet (Eugene Drucker, Lawrence Dutton, David Finckel & Philip Setzer), artists; Wolf Erichson, producer

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

Leonard Bernstein, conductor (New York Philharmonic)

Best Opera Recording
 
winner
Wagner: Die Walkuere

Hildegard Behrens, Gary Lakes, Christa Ludwig, Kurt Moll, James Morris & Jessye Norman; James Levine, conductor; Cord Garben, producer (Metropolitan Opera Orchestra)

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

Robert Shaw, conductor (Atlanta Symphony Chorus; Atlanta Symphony Orchestra)

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

Yo-Yo Ma, artist (Baltimore Symphony Orchestra)

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

Andras Schiff, artist

Best Chamber Music Performance
 
winner
Bartók: 6 String Quartets

Emerson String Quartet (Eugene Drucker, Lawrence Dutton, David Finckel & Philip Setzer), artists

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

(Orchestra Of St. Luke's)

Best Contemporary Composition
 
winner
Reich: Different Trains

Steve Reich, composer

Best Engineered Recording - Classical
 
winner
Britten: War Requiem

Jack Renner, engineer (Robert Shaw, conductor)

Classical Producer Of The Year
 
winner
Robert Woods