It's Grammy Day, 2010, and I'm feeling more excited about this particular one than I've felt in years and years.
The reason being? Well, as you can probably guess--I'm thrilled on behalf of country music's extraordinary presence in the overall picture of the awards ceremony.
After a couple of years in which country has made ever-increasing strides breaking down audience and genre barriers, we're now at the pinnacle of all this momentum.
This time I think it's truly official: Country isn't just for country fans anymore. Or red states. Or any place that isn't bordering an ocean.
Yeah, I know I've been saying this for a while--and so have many of you. For tons of music fans, this isn't news at all. Today, however, it just feels set in stone.
Let's start with the obvious. It's pretty fantastic to see a country artist--Taylor Swift--carrying nominations for top song, record and album. Whether she wins zero awards or sweeps them all (and I'm pretty darned sure she's going to win at least one cross-genre Grammy tonight)--Swift has already been dominating music news, and she will be the story of the night.
Whether you like her or not. Whether she's gone too pop, or not. She's it, and she's Nashville. No question.
I read an article from the Tennessean online which contained some sentiments that perfectly sum up my anticipation for tonight's show; in particular, one from author/historian David Wild, who writes the Grammy show.
"Sometimes it takes a success story like Taylor Swift to wake people up," he said.
"There are tons of kids growing up in L.A. and New York now who look at country like they look at pop."
And, of course, we're not just talking Taylor Swift at this point. The Zac Brown Band is up for new artist of the year. Carrie Underwood will share the stage with a series of non-country top vocalists for a tribute to Michael Jackson. And, "I have a 10-year-old and a 12-year-old who think Lady Antebellum is cool," Wild told the Tennessean.
Nashville, you are the shining city of the evening. This promises to be one of the biggest nights in your history. I can't wait to watch the Grammys tonight. Hope you all are as excited as I am.
Come on back tomorrow and we can dish about who won and who didn't. See you soon!
As always, be sure to: