Young's acclaimed solo albums, alongside work with Buffalo Springfield, Crazy Horse and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, helped lay the artistic foundation for country-rock and set a model for singer-songwriters in the 1970s and beyond
His life-long dedication to sonic integrity is behind his development of Pono, a high-definition digital music format that aims to restore artists' visions of their recordings to an easily accessible consumer platform
SANTA MONICA, Calif. (January 30, 2014) — Reprising what has become a highly anticipated evening that kicks off music's biggest week in the run up to the annual GRAMMY Awards®, the Producers & Engineers Wing’s seventh annual GRAMMY® Week Celebration was held on Tuesday, January 21, 2014. The event, which took place at The Village Studios in West Los Angeles, honors the contributions made by producers and recording, mixing and mastering engineers whose technical expertise and creative brilliance play a key role in recordings and often earn them GRAMMY Awards of their own. The event also highlights individuals who, in the words of Recording Academy President and CEO Neil Portnow, have "championed creative freedom and sonic integrity" throughout their career, and is the occasion for the presentation of The Recording Academy President's Merit Award. This honor has previously been bestowed upon Interscope Geffen A&M Chairman Jimmy Iovine, producer/musician T Bone Burnett and Island Records' Chris Blackwell, among other luminaries.
This year’s event, which preceded the 56th Annual GRAMMY Awards on Sunday, January 26, 2014, airing live on the CBS Television Network, honored Neil Young, with Portnow presenting the award to the applause of hundreds of Academy and P&E Wing members and guests, including GRAMMY nominee Alex Da Kid, two-time GRAMMY winner Colbie Caillat, two-time GRAMMY winner Andrew Dost (of fun.), GRAMMY winner Jakob Dylan, multiple GRAMMY winners Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, three-time GRAMMY winner Kris Kristofferson, and GRAMMY winner Stephen Stills.
Young took the stage after an introduction delivered by Portnow, the P&E Wing’s Co-chair Mike Clink, founding member Ed Cherney, and Senior Executive Director Maureen Droney. A short biographical film chronicled Young's 49-year career, including his contributions as co-founder of Farm Aid and The Bridge School, which helps physically challenged children overcome their impairments via the use of technology. In fact, technology remains part of Young’s diverse activities, and after a heartfelt and often hilarious discourse on how the technology of music can get in the way of what an artist wants to say, he took the opportunity to announce that he would donate a one-percent equity stake in Pono, his soon to debut high-resolution digital music project, to the MusiCares Foundation, an arm of The Recording Academy that offers musicians a place to turn in times of financial, personal, or medical crisis. Despite his accomplishments, which include multiple GRAMMY Awards and landmark recordings such as Harvest and After The Gold Rush, Young proved himself to be profoundly humble, when he told the audience, "I'm just one of you. You honor me, you’re honoring yourselves. It's not me – it's what you do."
Young's appearance was followed by a three-song solo set by GRAMMY winner Dave Matthews, closing with Young's "Hey Hey, My My." Audience members then circulated throughout The Village Studios, home to countless classic and GRAMMY Award-winning recordings, including Fleetwood Mac's Tusk and the soundtrack to O Brother, Where Art Thou?
In addition to imaginative food and drink offerings, attendees were also able to experience wares displayed by the evening's sponsors, many of whom are from the world of professional audio: Platinum Sponsor AUPEO! (www.aupeo.com); Gold Sponsors AVID (www.avid.com), Westlake Pro, (www.westlakepro.com), DTS (www.dts.com), Shure (www.shure.com), Iron Mountain Entertainment Services (www.ironmountain.com), Music Marketing (www.musicmarketing.ca), and Presonus (www.presonus.com); Silver Sponsors Louisiana Entertainment Commission (www.louisianaentertainment.gov), PMC, Ltd. (www.pmc-speakers.com) and Korus (www.korussound.com); Bronze Sponsors B Fragranced (www.bfragranced.com), GC Pro (stores.guitarcenter.com/gcpro), Lurssen Mastering (www.lurssenmastering.com), Sound Exchange (www.soundexchange.com), Vintage King Audio (www.vintageking.com),Y-Jet(www.flyy-jet.com); and Participating Sponsors iZotope (www.izotope.com), Capital Bauer Studio Insurance Program (www.ajgrms.com/albany), Prism Sound (www.prismsound.com) and Full Sail University (www.fullsail.edu).
Photo Caption 1: Pictured L-R: Maureen Droney, Senior Executive Director, The Recording Academy® Producers & Engineers Wing®; Neil Portnow, President, The Recording Academy; and honoree Neil Young, at the 56th GRAMMY® Awards P&E Wing Event Honoring Neil Young at The Village Recording Studios on January 21, 2014, in Los Angeles, California. Photo Courtesy of The Recording Academy® /WireImage.com © 2014.
Photo Caption 2: Pictured L-R: Dave Matthews and Neil Young attend the 56th GRAMMY® Awards P&E Wing Event Honoring Neil Young at The Village Recording Studios on January 21, 2014, in Los Angeles, California. Photo Courtesy of The Recording Academy®/Michael Kovac/WireImage. © 2014. Photographed by: Michael Kovac/WireImage.
Photo Caption 3: Key personnel from sponsors from the 56th GRAMMY® Awards P&E Wing Event Honoring Neil Young at The Village Recording Studios on January 21, 2014, in Los Angeles, California. Photo Courtesy of The Recording Academy® /WireImage.com © 2014.