Betty White, Marley Brothers up for Grammy

Nominees for the 54th annual Grammy awards were recently announced and among them an eclectic mix of talents reflecting 78 categories and 30 fields of music.

Kanye West tops the nominations with seven; Adele, Foo Fighters and Bruno Mars each garner six nods; and Lil Wayne and Skrillex each are up for five awards. Drake, Paul Epworth, Cee Lo Green, Philip Lawrence, Ari Levine, Nicki Minaj, Mumford & Sons, Radiohead, Rihanna, and Justin Vernon (Bon Iver) each receive four nominations.

And with all the hoopla surrounding who will win the top honors, octogenarian actress Betty White stands out as a possible Grammy winner in the spoken word category.

She is up for her recording of “If You Ask Me (And Of Course You Wont).

White will have to beat Tina Fey (Bossypants), Val Vilmer & Cast (The Mark of Zorro), Various artists (Fab Fan Memories –The Beatles Bond), and Dan Donohue & various Artists (Hamlet, William Shakespeare) to win the music industry’s highest honor.

Also in contention in the reggae category are two brothers – Stephen and Ziggy Marley – sons of reggae icon Robert Nesta Marley.

Either will face-off with jazz pianist Monty Alexander, Israel Vibration, and Shaggy to take the sole reggae title.

“Once again, it is most gratifying to see the Grammy awards process produce a broad cross section of diverse and impressive nominees across multiple genres,” Neil Portnow, President/CEO of The Recording Academy said.

“This year’s nominations truly reflect an exceptional and talented creative community that embodies some of the highest levels of excellence and artistry in their respective fields. Coupled with the fourth year of our primetime nominations special, the road to music’s biggest night, the 54th annual Grammy awards in February, is off to an exciting and appropriate start.”

Spice Islander Fetes For City Harvest

The pantry at City Harvest received a new stock of food items recently when Grenada’s birthday celebrant Yvette Noel Schure made a special gift suggestion to guests attending her fashion-forward 50th celebration at the Strand Hotel.

She asked everyone on the guest list to donate to City Harvest.

Instead or in addition to toting cute gift bags, many lugged cans, boxes, bags and carts filled with non-perishable food items.

Outside the swank mid-town hotel, a drop-off container quickly filled as guests the likes of CNN reporter Anderson Cooper, Sanjaya Malakar, American Idol contestant, singer John Legend, designer Tina Knowles (mother of Beyonce) Nina Maraj (mother of Nicky Minaj) and a host of celebrity guests prepped for the all-Caribbean 50th birthday fete.

The Caribbean themed event transformed the already festive atmosphere to feature a tropical scene of banana trees positioned under the flags of CARICOM nations.

The American Bistro Restaurant served up a Caribbean-inspired menu with parcels of roti in abundance. Tropical beverages were laced with sorrel leaves and spiced by island mints and other Caribbean delights.

Legend serenaded Noel-Schure with a special rendition of the Birthday song.

Other highlights of the evening included a special performance by calypso/soca star Randy Isaac.

Perhaps Noel-Schure is best known for working 17 years at SONY Music to help shape the careers of singers Mariah Carey, Michael Bolton, Prince, John Legend, Kenny Lattimore, Nancy Wilson, Johnny Mathis, Beyonce and others.

Prior to that, she worked the teen beat editing the pages of then-popular Black Beat Magazine, a monthly publication, which helped launch the careers of Boyz II Men, Jodeci, Mary J. Blige and other well-established hip-hop entertainers.

However, the Birch Grove, Grenadian native is also known for extending a helping hand to the needy. Although she has contributed to enhancing Calabash, a Caribbean consortium as well as aiding benefits to Haiti, she is regarded as one of the premiere mobilizers of a campaign to fill containers to help residents of Birch Grove when a hurricane demolished much of the banana crop and forced many Grenadians from their home.

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