The 55th annual Grammy Awards will air this Sunday on CBS, and as important as this show is to music fans everywhere, another noteworthy show will air the night before called “The Grammys will go on: A Death in the Family.”
In the first special of its kind, this one-hour TV show will take a look at how the Grammy’s producers, host and musical artists made last minute changes to the program after the tragic and sudden loss of Whitney Houston, 24 hours prior to show time last year.
Houston was getting ready to attend a Grammy party in LA hosted by her record label chief, Clive Davis, when she was discovered in her hotel room by some personal assistants, too late to revive her.
With Houston’s death occurring 24 hours before the telecast, many last minute changes had to be made for the Grammys show. First, how will the producers address this sad news? Then, what kind of tribute can be done with so little notice?
Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band opened the show with the appropriate “We Take Care of Our Own” from their Wrecking Ball CD. Grammy host LL Cool J started his opening monologue by saying, “We’ve had a death in the family,” then led the audience in a prayer for “our fallen sister.”
The rapper went on to say: “This night is about something truly universal and healing. This night is about music.” Paul McCartney’s all-star line-up closed the show with the Golden Slumbers medley from Abbey Road, another last minute change due to the circumstances.
But perhaps the most moving moment the producers decided on was to bring out Jennifer Hudson to sing Houston’s biggest hit “I Will Always Love You.” As a lucky member of the live audience that night, this reporter can say that it was so quiet in the Staples Center during her stunning performance, you could hear a pin drop.
Hopefully, this TV special will show how the producers went about seeking Hudson to appear with 24 hours notice, and what went into making that happen.
Last year’s Grammy show resulted in record-setting ratings with nearly 40 million viewers, the second-highest rated Grammy telecast ever, and the biggest social TV event in history to date with more than 13 million social media comments. All the more reason this special will make for intriguing television.
There is a short clip you can see as a preview to the special here.
“The Grammys will go on: A Death in the Family”
Saturday, February 9, 2013
9 p.m. - 10 p.m.
The 55th Annual Grammy Awards
Sunday, February 10, 2013
8 p.m. – 11:30 p.m.