Grammy Legend Award

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Grammy Legend Award
Awarded for ongoing contributions and influence in the music industry
Country United States
Presented by National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences
First awarded 1990
Official website

The Grammy Legend Award, or the Grammy Living Legend Award,[1][2] is a special award of merit given to recording artists by the Grammy Awards, a ceremony that was established in 1958 and originally called the Gramophone Awards.[3][4] Honors in several categories are presented at the ceremony annually by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences of the United States for outstanding achievements in the music industry.[5][6]

The first Grammy Legend Awards were issued in 1990 to Andrew Lloyd Webber, Liza Minnelli, Smokey Robinson and Willie Nelson. The honor was inaugurated to recognize "ongoing contributions and influence in the recording field".[7] The next year four more musicians (Aretha Franklin, Billy Joel, Johnny Cash and Quincy Jones) were acknowledged with Grammy Legend Awards. The award was given to Barbra Streisand in 1992 and Michael Jackson in 1993.

After 1994, when the American musicians Curtis Mayfield and Frank Sinatra were both issued Grammy Legend Awards, the honors have been given to recording artists intermittently. Italian operatic tenor Luciano Pavarotti was the 1998 recipient of the award. The following year, British singer-songwriter Elton John was recognized with the honor. The Bee Gees became the first recipients of the award in the 21st century when the brothers were acknowledged by the Grammys in 2003. Overall, fourteen solo musicians and one band have received the Grammy Legend Award.


Year[I] Image Recipient Lifetime Nationality Ref.
1990 An upperbody shot of a middle-aged man in a dark suit. Lloyd Webber, AndrewAndrew Lloyd Webber b. 1948  United Kingdom [8]
1990 A woman in a red dress, jacket and scarf smiles toward the camera. Minnelli, LizaLiza Minnelli b. 1946  United States [1]
1990 A man in a light-colored suit sings into a microphone Robinson, SmokeySmokey Robinson b. 1940  United States [9]
1990 An elderly man holds a guitar while in front of a microphone. He has white facial hair and wears a United States flag bandana. Nelson, WillieWillie Nelson b. 1933  United States [7]
1991 A woman stands on stage and sings into a microphone. She wears a blue dress and has a blue feather boa around her arms. Franklin, ArethaAretha Franklin b. 1942  United States [10]
1991 An upper body shot of a man wearing a shirt, suit and tie. He is balding and his smiling mouth is framed by a white goatee beard. Joel, BillyBilly Joel b. 1949  United States [11]
1991 alt6=A man with dark hair looks forlornly down to his left. He rests his chin between his thumb and finger. Cash, JohnnyJohnny Cash 1932–2003  United States [12]
1991 A man in a blue jacket looks ahead. The balding male's dark sunglasses conceal his eyes. Jones, QuincyQuincy Jones b. 1933  United States [13]
1992 A blond-haired woman looks down to the ground. She wears a white dress and a silver necklace. Streisand, BarbraBarbra Streisand b. 1942  United States [14]
1993 US singer Michael Jackson on May 14, 1984, during a White House Ceremony to launch the Campaign against Drunk Driving. Jackson, MichaelMichael Jackson 1958–2009  United States [15]
1994 Black and white picture of a man with a beard wearing a turtleneck and glasses. Mayfield, CurtisCurtis Mayfield 1942–1999  United States [16]
1994 A middle-aged man in a tuxedo sits and smiles into the distance. Sinatra, FrankFrank Sinatra 1915–1998  United States [17]
1998 A man in a dress coat and white shirt opens his mouth, which is framed by dark facial hair. Pavarotti, LucianoLuciano Pavarotti 1935–2007  Italy [18]
1999 A blond-haired middle-aged man stands with his arms open and fists clenched. He wears a dark suit and red shirt. He also sports a cross pendant around his neck, and wears purple sunglasses. John, EltonElton John b. 1947  United Kingdom [7]
2003 The Bee Gees Gees, BeeBee Gees  United Kingdom [19]

^[I] Each year is linked to an article about the Grammy Awards ceremony of that year.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Kotb, Hoda (March 12, 2004). "Liza: Life in the limelight". Retrieved December 31, 2009. 
  2. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Billy Joel biography". MTV. Retrieved December 31, 2009. 
  3. ^ "Seen and heard at the 50th Grammy Awards". USA Today. Gannett Company. February 11, 2008. Retrieved December 20, 2009. 
  4. ^ Henken, John (February 18, 2001). "The 2001 Grammys" (Payment required to access full article). Los Angeles Times. Tribune Company. Retrieved December 20, 2009. 
  5. ^ Hilburn, Richard (March 13, 1970). "Top Grammy Winners Announced" (Payment required to access full article). Los Angeles Times. Tribune Company. Retrieved December 20, 2009. 
  6. ^ "The Prem Rawat Foundation Presents Its Initiatives at the Grammy Awards". America's Intelligence Wire. February 9, 2007. Retrieved December 21, 2009. (subscription required (help)). 
  7. ^ a b c "Grammy Legend Award". Retrieved December 20, 2009. 
  8. ^ Cader Books, p. 545
  9. ^ Kalte, p. 117
  10. ^ Barrera, Sandra (September 6, 2005). "Franklin not ready to rest on another laurel". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Journal Communications. Retrieved December 31, 2009. 
  11. ^ Gunderson, Edna (March 16, 1999). "Billy Joel enters his classical period Joining Hall of Fame, he leaves rock behind" (Payment required to access full article). USA Today. Gannett Company. Retrieved December 20, 2009. 
  12. ^ "Critic's choice" (Payment required to access full article). Fort Worth Star-Telegram. The McClatchy Company. February 15, 1991. Retrieved December 20, 2009. 
  13. ^ Ballasy, Nicholas (October 29, 2009). "‘Melody’ Missing from Music Industry, Quincy Jones Says". Retrieved December 31, 2009. 
  14. ^ "The 1992 Grammys an 'unforgettable' night for Natalie Cole, Bonnie Raitt and R.E.M" (Payment required to access full article). The Philadelphia Inquirer. Philadelphia Media Holdings. February 26, 1992. Retrieved December 20, 2009. 
  15. ^ McShane, Larry (February 25, 1993). "Grammy moments - memorable and forgettable". Deseret News. Retrieved December 31, 2009. 
  16. ^ "Curtis Mayfield, 57, entertainer, songwriter" (Payment required to access full article). Telegram & Gazette. The New York Times Company. December 27, 1999. Retrieved December 20, 2009. 
  17. ^ Harrington, Richard (March 2, 1994). "The Grammy Whammy" (Payment required to access full article). The Washington Post. The Washington Post Company. Retrieved December 20, 2009. 
  18. ^ Shmith, Michael (September 7, 2007). "Prince among tenors, undisputed king of high C's". The Age. Fairfax Media. Retrieved December 20, 2009. 
  19. ^ "The 45th Annual Grammy Awards" (Payment required to access full article). The Philadelphia Inquirer. Philadelphia Media Holdings. February 24, 2003. Retrieved December 20, 2009. 

External links[edit]