(The following is a transcript of Recording Academy President/CEO Neil Portnow's remarks on the 57th GRAMMY Awards telecast. Portnow was joined by GRAMMY winners Jennifer Hudson and Ryan Tedder.)
Neil Portnow: What if we're all watching the GRAMMYs a few years from now, and there's no Best New Artist award because there aren't enough talented artists or songwriters who are actually able to make a living from their craft? Could that really happen? Or more importantly, could any of us ever let that happen?
As great artists remind us this evening, music matters. Music has tremendous value in our lives. So while new ways of listening to music evolve, one thing should never change: For the artists, songwriters and producers, we must promise them that new technology and distribution will pay them fairly.
Jennifer Hudson: Watching the GRAMMYs at home tonight is a new generation dreaming of one day being on this stage, just as I did. So all of us who have enjoyed success in music have a responsibility to them. And that's why our friends at The Recording Academy started GRAMMYs on the Hill in Washington, D.C., which I was lucky enough to experience firsthand.
NP: In our first 10 years, nearly a thousand music creators have traveled to our nation's capital to stand together and speak out for our rights. We do so to educate those who make the laws so they understand the hard work and sacrifice of those who make the music. At a recent congressional hearing I made the case that any updates to the laws that set how creators are paid must strongly protect those who create the soundtrack of our lives.
Ryan Tedder: And music activism is coming at exactly the right time. From the Turtles to Taylor Swift, longtime established and new generations are speaking out. With all the changes in how we listen to music and the review of copyright laws which are set by Congress, music creators and fans must speak out now.
JH: So tonight, we are proud to launch the GRAMMY Creators Alliance, a coalition of many artists, some of whom are sitting among you tonight. Together, we will advise those who make policy in music and in government so that our next generation of creators are able to make tomorrow's music as great as tonight's.
RT: Join Jennifer and me and many of your other favorite music creators. Go to GRAMMY.com/alliance and be a part of this historic movement of music makers and fans. And tweet your favorite artists with the hashtag #GRAMMYAlliance to let them know you want to help keep the music playing too.
NP: Thanks to the artists who have joined our Creators Alliance, to our Academy members who lend their voices and to the fans. Together, we can make our musical future as vibrant as we all want it to be.