At its annual spring meeting, the Board of Trustees of The Recording Academy elected recording artist and co-owner of MoonHouse Studio Christine Albert as Chair, producer/engineer John Poppo as Vice Chair and four-time GRAMMY-, 12-time Latin GRAMMY- and three-time Emmy-winning engineer Eric Schilling as Secretary/Treasurer. Outgoing Chair of the Board and GRAMMY-nominated TV/video producer George J. Flanigen IV was elected Chair Emeritus.
As part of the meeting, The Academy's Board of Trustees also approved several changes to the Awards process, including renaming the Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance category to Best Metal Performance; expanding the American Roots Music Field by establishing a new category for Best American Roots Song; and renaming and revising the Music Video Field to Music Video/Film Field. This brings the total number of GRAMMY categories that will be recognized at the 56th Annual GRAMMY Awards on January 26, 2014, to 82.
"Through the election of our new National Officers and the focus of the week's discussions, The Academy's Board of Trustees continues to demonstrate its passionate commitment to keeping The Recording Academy a relevant and responsive organization in our dynamic music community," said Neil Portnow, President/CEO of The Recording Academy. "We welcome our new slate of officers and the diversity and depth of music industry experience they offer, and I look forward to working closely with this talented new team."
Albert is an independent recording artist and co-owner of MoonHouse Studio and MoonHouse Records in Austin, Texas. She has released 11 independent albums as a solo artist and as part of the folk/Americana duo Albert And Gage, with her husband and partner Chris Gage. Albert is also known for her "Texafrance" series of French/English recordings that combine her European heritage and Texas musical roots. She has appeared on "Austin City Limits," and was awarded Female Vocalist of the Year by the Kerrville Folk Festival Music Awards and Superstar of Austin Music by the Austin Chamber of Commerce for her community service work. Albert is founder and president of Swan Songs, a nonprofit that fulfills musical wishes at the end of life. She has been involved with The Recording Academy Texas Chapter since its inception and has served four terms on its Board of Governors. She most recently served as Vice Chair of The Academy.
Poppo is a producer, engineer, songwriter, and musician who has worked in the fields of pop, R&B, hip-hop, dance, rock, and classical music for more than 25 years. His various credits can be found on recordings by numerous iconic artists, including Toni Braxton, Mariah Carey, Daryl Hall, Michael Jackson, Chaka Khan, Annie Lennox, Madonna, 'N Sync, Seal, and Luther Vandross, among others. Founder of Pop Productions Inc., a production/management company, Poppo is now primarily focused on developing new talent, including his current work with artist Chelsea Chris. He has served on The Recording Academy's Board of Trustees and many of the organization's national committees for the past 10 years.
Schilling began his career in community radio and went on to manage Crescent Moon Studios for Gloria and Emilio Estefan. Schilling has engineered and mixed projects for such artists as Natalie Cole, Madonna, Ricky Martin, Jon Secada, Shakira, Frank Sinatra, Chick Corea, Dave Grusin, and Arturo Sandoval, among others. He is currently broadcast music mixer for "The X Factor," the Billboard Music Awards, the Latin GRAMMY Awards, and the GRAMMY Awards, the latter of which has garnered him three Primetime Emmy Awards for Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Variety Series or a Special.
Flanigen served as Chair of The Recording Academy from 2009–2013. He has produced/directed music videos, television promos and network television specials for such clients as the Walt Disney Company, ABC, CBS, "Live! With Regis And Kelly," Sony/BMG, Warner Bros. Records, Capitol Records, Kid Rock, Loretta Lynn, Hank Williams Jr., Rascal Flatts, and Carrie Underwood. Additionally, Flanigen also serves on many philanthropic boards, including boards for MusiCares, the GRAMMY Foundation and the Mike Curb College of Entertainment & Music Business at Belmont University.
To ensure the Awards process remains representative of the current musical landscape, the Trustees have approved the following changes recommend by the Awards & Nominations Committee:
Best American Roots Song has been added to the American Roots Music Field. A songwriter's award, it will encompass all of the subgenres of the Field (Americana, bluegrass, blues, folk, regional roots music), and puts the Field in line with the Rock, Rap, R&B, Country, and Gospel/CCM Fields, all of which have songwriters' awards.
The Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance category has been renamed Best Metal Performance and becomes a stand-alone category. Hard Rock singles/tracks will now be screened in the Best Rock Performance category. It was determined that metal has a very distinctive sound, and hard rock more closely aligns with rock and can exist comfortably as one end of the rock spectrum. Additionally, based on the number of metal entries, the category would be able to sustain a healthy competition among true metal acts.
The Music Video Field will now become Music Video/Film Field, which also resulted in renaming the Best Short Form Music Video category to Best Music Video, and the Best Long Form Music Video category to Best Music Film. Best Music Video is for music videos recognized by the artist and/or the record label as the official video for an individual single or track, released for sale to the public or first appearing on television or online during the current eligibility year, and are synchronous or predominantly synchronous to a commercially released recording. Best Music Film is for concert/performance films or music documentaries released for sale to the public for the first time or first appearing on television or online during the current eligibility year. Music-related documentaries must have 51 percent or more music performance-based material. Also eligible are general release theatrical, non-fictional music-related films with 51 percent or more music performance-based material.