5th Annual P&E Wing GRAMMY Week Celebration honoring Jimmy Iovine
Producers And Engineers Wing
On Wednesday, February 8, the 5th Annual P&E Wing GRAMMY Week® Celebration kicked off at The Village Studios, conferring The Recording Academy President's Merit Award and a special honor from the Wing to Jimmy Iovine, a singular talent recognized for his commitmentto excellence and the art and craft of recorded music. A Brooklyn kid who came up through the ranks as a recording engineer, Iovine worked at legendary studios such as the Record Plant and went on to produce albums for U2, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, Stevie Nicks, Simple Minds, Dire Straits, and Patti Smith. A co-founder of Interscope Records in 1990—home to GRAMMY-winning talent such as Black Eyed Peas, Lady Gaga and No Doubt—Iovine oversaw its evolution into Interscope Geffen A&M Records, and currently presides as chairman.
Singer/songwriter Skylar Grey opened the presentation with a piano version of last year's GRAMMY-nominated hit "Love The Way You Lie," and newcomer Lana Del Rey closed with a piano- and electric guitar-backed rendition of "Video Games,” showing that Iovine has not lost his knack for identifying artists who can move an audience. Considering his well-known penchant for headwear (Iovine donned a slate knit cap for the evening, forgoing his usual trademark baseball cap), it is only fitting that he is the man responsible for the most sought-after headwear du jour, with millions of music lovers around the world wearing Beats headphones, which he developed with legendary GRAMMY-winning producer Dr. Dre. As one of the evening’s honorary co-chairs, Dre was in the audience, and Iovine saved a particularly emotional shout-out for him during his remarks, citing him as a seminal partner in a career that has spanned rock, pop, and hip-hop, as attendees such as Stevie Nicks, Colbie and Ken Caillat, will.i.am, Alex da Kid, Peter Asher, Robbie Robertson, Jimmy Jam, Sheila E., and Diddy looked on.
Iovine also fondly acknowledged others who have influenced his career, including Springsteen producer/manager Jon Landau, GRAMMY-winning recording artist Mary J. Blige, and engineers/producers such as Roy Cicala and GRAMMY winner Elliot Scheiner. The night’s video presentation chronicling Iovine’s achievements and professional relationships, along with Iovine’s own passionate speech, showed everyone a glimpse of what Recording Academy President/CEO Neil Portnow described as his "freedom and creativity in the studio — not something easy to [maintain] in the corporate world."
Iovine also praised the pro audio manufacturing community for its contributions, and indeed The Village was filled with technology demonstrations from sponsors West L.A. Music and Westlake Professional Sales, as well as co-sponsors including Harman International brands AKG Acoustics, JBL, and Lexicon; Iron Mountain; Avid; Musician's Institute; Music Marketing; Shure Incorporated; Beats Electronics; Ultimate Ears; Focusrite Novation; Prism Media Products; Apogee Electronics Corporation; Full Sail University; Guitar Center Professional (GC Pro); Lurssen Mastering; Sennheiser Electronic Corporation and SoundExchange. Studio sponsors included Conway Recording, EastWest Studios, Jungle City Studios, Record Plant, Sound Stage and Studio at The Palms. Eco-friendly cocktails were provided by VeeV. Guests finished the evening off with coffee and espresso service from The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, a beverage sampling from Neuro, and a unique chocolate sampling from Sacramento-based Imagine Chocolates via the evening’s gift bags.