Monday, February 9, 2015

How to Win an Industry Award

Many epople have many things to say abut the Grammys, both in praise and in disappointment. Rather than re-hash all that. let me focus on just one thing.

The Grammys are a perfect example of a formula I figured out for winning and industry award (that is, an award given by members of an industry, like the Oscars, the Emmy's, the Tonys, and the Grammys, although it is seen most often in the Oscars and Grammys). The Award that was given this past sunday night that is the example of the successful use of the formula is the "PBest Traditional Pop award given to Lady Gaga and Tony Bennet. Here is how it works:

1. Pick a genre of your preferred industry that is off the mainstream but has a passionate fan base.

2. Become a big star in that genre.

3. Pick another genre off the manstream and "crossover."

Easy as pie. Here is what will happen:

Your fans from your original genre will follow you to the new genre.

Fans of the new genre will be curious as to how this star of another genre can do.

This will create enough of a ripple in the mainstream radar that mainstram audiences will want to know what is going on.

The industry, which is pretty much defined as "the mainstream," which has never really paid attention to ether genre, will be impressed by the novelty of your new endeavor.

Not having any experience with which to judge your efforts, they will assume that what you did is excellent, and give you the award.

This formula has worked for Brian Setzer (Rockabilly to Swing), Dave Alvin (rck and roll to Traditional Folk), Ang Lee (Arrt-House Asian Cinema to Kung Fu), and, to take a parallel version of the formula, many actors who became directors (Kevin Costner, Clint Eastwood, etc)

Look at how this worked this year: Lady Gaga, who was on the top of her genre of...whatever it was (I want to say something like "socially alienated little monsters," but I am not sure if that is a genre, but you get the idea), went as far away from that as possible by doing a duet with one of the last of the great crooners, Tony Bennet, in the now-underappreciated genre of American Pop.

BANG! Instant award!

I am not saying that the work of any of these examples did not merit their awards, but the math just. doesn't. Lie.

Now you go and do it.

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