If Lil Wayne's "Tha Carter III" wins album of the year, the rapper won't be alone at the podium. The award, bestowed on an album's artists, producers, engineers and mixers, means Wayne's world of 42 contributors may congregate on stage to thank God and their moms.
It easily beats the last stampede in the album category, Outkast's 2003 champ "Speakerboxxx/The Love Below." The hip-hop duo shared the spoils with 15 engineers/mixers, two mastering engineers and producer Carl Mo.
Rap doesn't have a monopoly on mob hits. When twangy soundtrack "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" won best album in 2001, 38 statuettes were dispensed. And Santana's "Supernatural," 1999's top album, anointed 44 participants.
The record-holder remains disco soundtrack "Saturday Night Fever," which won in 1978, when 32 artists and 18 producers collected Grammy gold for best album. Boosting that booty was a rule in force until 1980 allowing artist/producers to receive Grammys for both roles.
Multiple producers and songwriting by committee are far more common now than when the Bee Gees reigned. You have to reach back a dozen years to find the last twosome to win best album: Bob Dylan and Daniel Lanois in 1997 for "Time Out of Mind." Even rarer? A self-produced artist like George Michael, who took best album for "Faith" in 1988. Then, it was lonely at the top.
Gannett News Service