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Volume 24, Number 8 — August 2017

ETSU staff and alumni receive Grammy nominations

December 28, 2016

East Tennessee State University is represented by faculty and alumni among the nominees for the 2017 Grammy Awards.

Dr. Ted Olson, a professor in the Department of Appalachian Studies, and Tony Russell received a nomination for Best Album Notes for "The Knoxville Sessions, 1929-1930: Knox County Stomp." The two co-authored a hardcover book to accompany this Bear Family Records boxed set, which they also co-produced, of the 102 extant recordings from the sessions conducted by the Brunswick-Vocalion record label at the St. James Hotel in downtown Knoxville, Tennessee. The recordings had never been reissued in any form and only existed on rare 78 RPM records, some with only one copy remaining.

A nomination for Best World Music Album went to Ladysmith Black Mambazo for "Walking in the Footsteps of Our Fathers." Martin Walters, a lecturer in Jazz Studies in the Department of Music and also a lecturer in the Department of Media and Communication, was the mastering engineer for the album.

Kenny Chesney, an alumnus of Bluegrass, Old-Time and Country Music Studies at ETSU, and P!nk were nominated for Best Country Duo/Group Performance for "Setting the World on Fire," and a nomination for Best Bluegrass Album went to Blue Highway for the newly released "Original Traditional." Blue Highway features alumni Tim Stafford on vocals and guitar and vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Shawn Lane. Stafford, also a former faculty member, serves on the ETSU Bluegrass Development Council.

In addition, the instrumental fusion band Snarky Puppy, of which ETSU Department of Music alumnus Justin Stanton is a member, was nominated for Best Contemporary Instrumental Album for "Culcha Vulcha." Pianist and trumpeter Stanton is an Elizabethton native and graduated from ETSU with a bachelor's degree in music in 2005. Snarky Puppy won the 2016 Grammy in that same category for "Sylva," a collaborative effort with Metropole Orkest, a jazz and pop orchestra from the Netherlands.