Trakin: If you had to pick an MVP for the evening, who would it be? Mariah, John Legend, Gwen Stefani or Kanye West?
Beer: Mariah... i expect another big night for mr. antonio l.a. reid


Mariah and Gwen Will Face Off, With John Legend, Kanye, U2, Springsteen
Two losers, HITS' less-than-esteemed Lenny Beer and Roy Trakin, kibbitz this year's Grammys...

Beer: Yo roy, are u really back at HITS... again!!!???
Trakin: I feel like Godfather IV... Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in...
Beer: Well, since you are here again, howzabout reviving our "Two Guys Talking About" feature?
Trakin: Sounds good to me... So, is it going to be a Mariah Carey, Gwen Stefani or Kanye West kind of night at the Grammys? All three are in the Record of the Year category
Beer: it feels like Mariah to me
Trakin: I don't disagree. "We Belong Together" was ubiquitous... Unbelievable comeback. Who woulda thunk it? Don't feel "Gold Digger" or "Hollaback Girl" has a shot here?
Beer: “Hollaback” would be my second guess
Trakin: The Mariah and Gwen stories would seem like catnip for Grammy voters. Are they the sentimental faves?
Beer: No doubt... (hehe)
Trakin: Let's move on to Album... Do veterans U2 or McCartney beat back best-sellers Mariah, Gwen and Kanye?
Beer: Saint Bono will be hard to beat
Trakin: The voters have been kind of democratic over the last few years, spreading around the love... But the U2 album was so last year. I like Kanye in this one...
Beer: OK, whattabout Song of the Year?
Trakin: Rascal Flatts, Springsteen, John Legend, U2 and "We Belong Together" again... I'm feeling Mariah here.
Beer: i think “Ordinary People” is a sleeper here and will win lots of Grammys for Mr. Legend... i'm betting Legend for Best New Artist for sure
Trakin: Over Ciara, Fall Out Boy, Keane and SugarLand, hunh? That's the first slam dunk of the night.
Beer: Yessir, “Ordinary People” is a Grammy type song, brilliant, adult, not over-exposed
Trakin: Best Female Pop Vocal: Mariah, this time for "It's Like That," with Gwen for "Hollaback Girl." Does Kelly Clarkson, who was jobbed in Song and Record of the Year, get it for "Since U Been Gone"? She deserves in this crowd. Although perennial faves Sheryl Crow and Bonnie Raitt are also in this category.
Beer: i think “Since U Been Gone” is the best pop single of the year and should win, but “Hollaback Girl” has juggernaut potential
Trakin: We'll see if Grammy voters respond more to a recovered Mariah or a preggers Gwen... That's a toss-up to me.
Beer: And will probably be the big story of the night
Trakin: How about Best Male Pop Vocal Performance? Jack Johnson, Macca, Seal, Rob Thomas, Stevie Wonder... I'm leaning barefoot boy, Jack Johnson. Although Thomas seems to be an Academy favorite.
Beer: i'll take Sir Paul in this field
Trakin: Ya think, hunh?
Beer: give Paul a Grammy, c'mon
Trakin: I’d love to see him get one... except I wasn't as crazy about this album as other people were.
Beer: i like it a lot
Trakin: Best Pop Performance Duo or Group... Love the White Stripes, but I don't see them winning over Black Eyed Peas, you? The Killers, Los Lonely Boys and Maroon 5 the other nominees.
Beer: Maroon 5 is an academy fave
Trakin: Best Pop Collaboration w/Vocals category is interesting... Black Eyed Peas/Jack Johnson, Foo Fighters/Norah Jones, Gorillaz/De La Soul, Herbie Hancock/Christina Aguilera, Stevie Wonder/India.Arie... I think this is where "Feel Good Inc." has a good shot, one of the best singles of the year.
Beer: Gorillaz is obvious, but those wacky Grammy folk may want Stevie on stage here
Trakin: Though Foo Fighters and Norah Jones combine two of Grammy's surest things
Beer: zzzzzzzzzzzzzz
Trakin: How about Best Pop Instrumental Performance? Bacharach/Botti, George Duke, Herbie Hancock/Trey Anastasio, Daniel Lanois, Les Paul... A final hoorah for the man who invented the electric guitar? Or Bacharach's comeback? Do you care?
Beer: do not care
Trakin: Burt's also up for Best Pop Instrumental with Eric Johnson, Earl Klugh, Daniel Lanois, Jeff Lorber, with only their immediate families interested in the outcome. I'm going with Mr. What the World Needs Now Is Love Sweet Love here. How about Best Pop Vocal Album... Fiona, Kelly Clarkson, Sheryl Crow, McCartney and Stefani... That's a Gwen victory...
Beer: now we have some potential controversy... does sheryl always win? is this where paul scores? is gwen rolling? does an album like kelly's with all those #1 songs matter? i'll take Gwen
Trakin: Me, too... Let’s move on to Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance? Clapton, Plant, Springsteen, Rob Thomas, Neil Young... Which name doesn't fit with the others? Dunh... The one who might just win it all... Rob Thomas.
Beer: neil young's the painter is getting huge critical love; i'm going with Neil
Trakin: I'm pulling for him, but "Devils & Dust" is also a critical darling...
Beer: yes it is
Trakin: I like the Boss there. Here's a good one... Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal: Coldplay, Foo Fighters, Franz Ferdinand, The Killers, U2... Competitive...
Beer: coldplay
Trakin: Great minds think alike... They deserve it. I thought they got jobbed in some of the other categories.
Beer: super jobbed
Trakin: Best Hard Rock Performance? Audioslave, Nine Inch Nails, Robert Plant, Queens of the Stone Age, System of a Down... I'm going System here. "B.Y.O.B." was definitely a keeper.
Beer: don't like any of these
Trakin: Ahh, you’re too old. Let's do Best Rock Song, then... Foo Fighters, Weezer, U2, Springsteen, Coldplay. Another toss-up... Can Coldplay score here, too? Tough call. "Beverly Hills" was the most downloaded song of the year. And we know Grammy loves Springsteen and U2.
Beer: yep, tough pick... coldplay
Trakin: Best Rock Album is also tough... Coldplay, Foos, Stones, U2, Neil Young... I have no idea except Coldplay deserves it.
Beer: I am voting U2
Trakin: The U2 album came out last year, but it spills into this year... Wonder if the membership will take that into consideration.
Beer: it is a great album
Trakin: Best Alternative Music Album is also a good one. The Arcade Fire, Beck, Death Cab for Cutie, Franz Ferdinand, The White Stripes... I'm feeling Franz here, purely on sales.
Beer: i'll take Beck
Trakin: I loved the White Stripes album, but not many seem to agree with me, and Beck was in my Top 10... Here's a good category: Best Contemporary Folk Album... Ry Cooder, Rodney Crowell, Nickel Creek, John Prine, Springsteen.
Beer: love love love the john prine album
Trakin: I just got into the Crowell album, it's excellent and so is the Ry Cooder.. I'd like to see either of them win, but isn't this where the Boss gets his props?
Beer: probably the fave, but John Prine comes back from cancer of the throat and makes one of the year's best albums, gotta be a contender
Trakin: You like Damian Marley in the reggae category against Burning Spear, Sean Paul, Shaggy and Third World? What, no Matisyahu?
Beer: yes, Damian... whattabout best R&B album?
Trakin: Earth, Wind and Fire, Fantasia, Alicia Keys, John Legend, Stevie Wonder... I feel a Legend in the making.
Beer: John Legend is my pick in a ROMP
Trakin: Best Contemporary R&B... Amerie, Mariah, Destiny's Child, Mario, Omarion?
Beer: Mariah
Trakin: Gots to be... Best Rap Solo Performance? Common, Eminem, 50 Cent, Ludacris, T.I., Kanye... Has to be West, young man.
Beer: Kanye
Trakin: Spoken word? Garrison Keillor, Al Franken, Sean Penn (for Dylan Chronicles), Senator Barack Obama and George Carlin... Sean Penn’s my guess.
Beer: I’ll take Barack Obama
Trakin: Comedy? Rick Moranis, Family Guy, Lewis Black, Chris Rock, Larry the Cable Guy? I'm feeling a groundswell for the Family Guy... that album got a lot of pub when it came out.
Beer: i'll take Chris Rock, good name recognition
Trakin: Best Compilation Soundtrack: Beyond the Sea, Napoleon Dynamite, No Direction Home, Ray, Six Feet Under 2... Got to be the Dylan... Magnificent documentary, great soundtrack.
Beer: agree... what about Music Show Album
Trakin: Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Hair, The Light in the Piazza, Spamalot, Putnam County Spelling Bee... Gotta be Spamalot... That thing's huge.
Beer: i'll take The Light in the Piazza... composer is related to Richard Rodgers
Dude.. you should be glad to know Eddie Blazonczyk's Versatones are once again going head to head with Jimmy Sturr and His Orchestra in the all-important Polka category... What a battle of the all-timers.
Beer: i vote for the genius of jimmy sturr
Trakin: Of course you do. Gotta go with Sturr's Shake, Rattle and Polka! That's probably the best bet of the night, wouldn't ya think?
Beer: no doubt
Trakin: Let's do Producer of the Year... Danger Mouse for Gorillaz, Nigel Godrich for Macca, Jimmy Jam/Terry Lewis for a variety, Steve Lillywhite for U2 and Jason Mraz, The Neptunes for Gwen Stefani and Mariah Carey, among others
Beer: whoa tough
Trakin: Neptunes look awfully strong... they produced not only Mariah and Gwen, but Snoop, Missy Elliott and Omarion... Huge records all.
Beer: Ok, u convinced me
Trakin: If you had to pick an MVP for the evening, who would it be? Mariah, John Legend, Gwen Stefani or Kanye West?
Beer: Mariah... i expect another big night for mr. antonio l.a. reid
Trakin: Wow... Tommy Mottola must be eating his heart out. Imagine, EMI paid her to go away, and now she's comeback player of the year.
Beer: And we paid you to go away, and now you are in line for the same
Trakin: Funny that... L.A. Reid is a master....
Beer: yes he is, and you are... well.... still breathing?
Trakin: Say goodnight, Ebert...
Beer: And goodnight mrs. calabash, wherever you are
Trakin: That sure ages you... but the Shadow knows.
Beer: Wonder if anyone reading this ever even heard of jimmy durante?
Trakin: Or Lamont Cranston for that matter... I know Pearson must... He knows who Franklin Pangborn is.
Beer: I do not
Trakin: If you saw him, you'd know him... A prissy character actor from the '40s... like Stanley Holloway.

A second sonic Boom (4/18a)
Bunny's hoppin' again. (4/17a)
Hats off to Larry (4/17a)
So many questions (4/18a)
The coziest way to experience the fest (4/18a)
Gosh, we hope there are more press releases.
Unless the Senate manages to make this whole thing go away, that is.
No, not that one.
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