February 11, 2013

Mumford & Sons stun Grammys with 'Babel' win

Grammy Awards voters spread the love around, as fun. nabs best new artist and song of the year and Gotye takes home record of the year.

By CHRIS TALBOTT/The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES — Mumford & Sons wrapped up a completely unpredictable Grammy Awards with perhaps the most surprising win of the night, taking home album of the year for "Babel."

Marcus Mumford, Ben Lovett, Country WInston, Ted Dwane
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From left, Marcus Mumford, Ben Lovett, Country Winston and Ted Dwane of Mumford & Sons arrive at the Grammy Awards on Sunday. Even the London folk-rockers themselves – stars of the 2012 Gentlemen of the Road Stopover in Portland – were surprised when their “Babel” won album of the year.

Jordan Strauss/Invision via The Associated Press

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Musical group fun. perform at the Grammy Awards on Sunday in Los Angeles. They took major awards song of the year for "We Are Young" and best new artist.

John Shearer/Invision via The Associated Press

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Bob Ludwig of Portland’s Gateway Mastering is listed as mastering engineer on “Babel,” album of the year at the 2013 Grammys.

(Ludwig got two album of the year nominations; the other one was for his fine-tuning of the final recording of Jack White’s “Blunderbuss.”)

Ludwig also was nominated for his work on two candidates for best-engineered album, non-classical: “Ashes & Fire” by Ryan Adams and “Love is a Four Letter Word” by Jason Mraz.

They lost to “The Goat Rodeo Sessions” by Yo-Yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer and Chris Thile.



The full list of winners of the 55th annual Grammy Awards is available here.

It was an event that even shocked the London folk-rockers.

"We figured we weren't going to win anything because The Black Keys have been sweeping up all day, rightfully so," Marcus Mumford said.

Dan Auerbach of The Black Keys ended up the night's top winner with four trophies, including producer of the year and three rock category victories with bandmate Patrick Carney. But it was hardly a clean sweep as The Recording Academy's thousands of voters spread the love for the year's top singles.

Fun. took home best new artist, in something of an upset over Frank Ocean, and song of the year for the transcendent anthem "We Are Young," featuring Janelle Monae.

"I didn't think we were going to win this one," lead singer Nate Ruess said after the best new artist win. "Frank Ocean. The Lumineers. Everybody, amazing."

Like Mumford & Sons, Gotye busted up the predictions, taking record of the year for 2012's top-selling single, the haunting "Somebody That I Used To Know," featuring Kimbra, and finished with three awards.

Prince, in hood and sunglasses and carrying a sparkly silver cane, presented him with the record of the year trophy and the Australian paid tribute to The Purple One's influence.

"A little bit lost for words, to receive an award from the man standing behind us with the cane," Gotye said. "Many years listening to this man's music growing up and a big reason I was inspired to make music. Thank you."

Jay-Z and Kanye West had three wins – sharing one award with Ocean – along with Skrillex, and a slew of nominees had two wins apiece, including former best new artist winner Esperanza Spalding.

Ocean was shut out in the major categories, but took home two trophies, including best urban contemporary album. Only Chris Brown, with whom Ocean scuffled last month, remained seated as the 25-year-old R&B winner walked to the stage during a standing ovation. Ocean beat Brown, who attended with girlfriend Rihanna, in the category.

Ocean won also won best rap/sung collaboration for "No Church in the Wild" with fellow top nominees Jay-Z and West, and The-Dream. The win came after victories for Jay-Z and West for best rap song and best rap performance for "... in Paris," another "Watch the Throne" track. Ocean also performed his song "Forrest Gump," the love song written about a man that first started the buzz that led to his announcement that his first love was a man.

"We Are Young" helped fun. earn a starring role at these Grammys with nominations in all four major categories after the release of their first album, matched only by Christopher Cross in 1981, and six overall. The band turned in a powerful early performance of "Carry On" as a downpour on stage began mid-song and guitarist Jack Antonoff got a kiss from girlfriend "Girls" creator Lena Dunham after winning.

The Black Keys took best rock performance for "Lonely Boy" during the main telecast and earlier in the day won best rock song for "Lonely Boy" and best rock album for "El Camino." Auerbach also got an assist – but no trophy – on Dr. John's best blues album "Locked Down," which he produced.

Other winners included Rihanna, Beyonce, Mumford & Sons and Taylor Swift, who opened the show as the Mad Hatter. Swift dressed in white top hat, tails, shorts and tall boots during the surreal version of her hummable hit "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together" that included a troop of mime clowns and a guy on a tricycle with a flame-thrower attached.

(Continued on page 2)

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Additional Photos

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Frank Ocean accepts the best urban contemporary album award for "channel ORANGE" at the Grammys on Sunday. Earlier, he won best rap/sung collaboration for "No Church in the Wild" with fellow top nominees Jay-Z and Kanye West, and The-Dream.

John Shearer/Invision via The Associated Press

click image to enlarge

Dan Auerbach, left, and Patrick Carney of the Black Keys accept the award for best rock album "El Camino" at the Grammy Awards. Auerbach also won producer of the year alone and best rock song for "Lonely Boy."

John Shearer/Invision via The Associated Press


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