Will The GRAMMY Shows Go On?
By DONNA BALANCIA
The GRAMMY CEO Deborah Dugan and Aerosmith lawsuits cast a dim light on what used to be exclusive events for rock star royalty. And now the GRAMMY Awards and MusiCares Person of the Year shows may be in trouble.
With Dugan’s blockbuster lawsuit filed Tuesday, alleging everything from sexual harassment and discrimination to incredible financial and voting improprieties, the Recording Academy may not easily recover.
Joey Kramer’s lawsuit against Aerosmith over his not being included during the MusiCares Person of the Year tribute to Aerosmith — the band he co-founded — proves the band might not have been the best selection for the MusiCares cause. Previous honorees include Dolly Parton and the late Tom Petty.
MusiCares has been an event put on by the charitable arm of the GRAMMYs. MusiCares raises hundreds of millions of dollars to allegedly come to the aid of musicians in need. MusiCares will pay a few months of rent here and there for a musician if they can’t work after an illness, for example. With all the scrutiny placed on The Recording Academy, expect that The MusiCares Foundation books will be examined now, too.
While both MusiCares (Jan. 24) and The GRAMMY Awards (Jan. 26) shows have not been canceled, most likely few people will take either of these events seriously going forward unless major changes are declared loudly.
In her lawsuit filed Tuesday with the EEOC, Dugan suggested the cheating at The Recording Academy is so widespread that nominated musicians sit on the committee that actually votes on their music. She alleges that improper relationships are taking place not only between artists and voters, but also between board members and law firms where they are employed.
There are a few scenarios: The GRAMMY events go on as planned and this year hit record-setting viewership, the shows go on and have the worst ratings ever, or the shows simply don’t go on.
None of the representatives California Rocker called will return our communications. Stay tuned.