As the Recording Academy gets set to honor the Beatles at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards on Jan. 26 and “The Night That Changed America” for their 50th anniversary the following night, it's notable that the Grammys were slow to take notice of the Beatles.
Beatlemania was just bursting when the 6th Annual Grammy Awards were handed out on March 12, 1964. The Best Rock and Roll Recording was April Stevens and Nino Tempo's “Deep Purple,” hardly a rocker in the modern sense. The Best Performance by a Vocal Group was Peter Paul and Mary's “Blowin' in the Wind.”
But things changed with the 7th Annual Awards, handed out the following year. Things weren't still totally right: They weren't nominated for Album of the Year, but they were up for Best New Artist, competing against Petula Clark, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Astrud Gilberto and Morgana King. “I Want To Hold Your Hand” was also nominated for Record of the Year and Song of the Year. They were also up for Best Original Score Written For a Motion Picture or TV Show, Best Performance By a Vocal Group, Songwriter's Award and Best Rock 'n' Roll Recording, all for “A Hard Day's Night.”
They won Best New Artist, and Best Performance By a Vocal Group. But they lost Record of the Year to Getz and Gilberto for "The Girl From Ipanema,” the Songwriter's Award to "Hello, Dolly!,” the Best Original Score Written For a Motion Picture or TV Show to "Mary Poppins" and, perhaps most astonishing, the Best Rock and Roll Recording to Petula Clark and "Downtown."
Another Also nominated that year and not winning: Stu Phillips for “The Beatles' Song Book.” That album lost to Henry Mancini and “The Pink Panther Theme.”
But that's not so bad. It only took 50 years for the Grammys to give the Beatles a Lifetime Achievement Award.
- Check out a detailed history of the Beatles and the Grammys at our Abbeyrd's Beatles Page site.
See our roundup of the most fab and gear stories about the 50th in Beatles 101: Read all about it: Our fab stories on the Beatles' 50th anniversary
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