Former MTSU student Hillary Scott branched out into contemporary Christian music in 2016 and brought home two Grammy Awards Sunday night, Feb. 12, in her inaugural venture with her group The Scott Family.
Scott, who’s also a member of country supergroup Lady Antebellum, won both her nominations in her new field: best contemporary Christian album for “Love Remains,” which was released in July, and best contemporary Christian music performance/song for “Thy Will,” which she co-wrote, off that album.
The Scott Family includes Scott’s parents, country singer Linda Davis and songwriter-musician Lang Scott, and her younger sister, Rylee.
A Department of Recording Industry alumnus, Josh Craig, also was part of a Grammy-winning project: “Hymns” by artists Joey & Rory, which won this year’s Grammy for best roots gospel album.
Craig, a 2015 cum laude audio production graduate of MTSU, worked on the “Hymns” album alongside winning producer Joe West at “The West Barn” studio in Franklin, Tennessee. Craig, who specializes in audio engineering, also provides mixing and editing services from his home studio.
Scott and Craig joined another former MTSU student and two recording industry alumni with recognitions for their work at the 59th Grammy Awards: Chris Young, Brad King and Pete Fisher.
Young’s No. 1 single, “Think of You,” which he co-wrote and which features singer Casadee Pope, was a nominee in the best country duo/group performance category.
Released in January 2016, it was bested by a special collaboration between icon Dolly Parton and a capella group Pentatonix in a reworking of Parton’s classic “Jolene.”
King, a 2015 MTSU recording industry graduate specializing in audio production, was the assistant engineer on the team that recorded “Poets & Saints” by the group All Sons & Daughters. It was released in September and competed with Scott in the best contemporary Christian album category.
Fisher, the Grand Ole Opry’s former longtime vice president and chief executive officer, was an executive producer on a team that created “American Saturday Night: Live from the Grand Ole Opry,” a concert film released in theaters in December 2015 and a nominee in the best music film category.
It features behind-the-scenes interviews and performances by 2008 MTSU university studies alumnus Brett Eldredge, The Band Perry, Brad Paisley, Darius Rucker and Blake Shelton. Director Ron Howard took home the Grammy in that category for his project”The Beatles: Eight Days A Week — The Touring Years.”
The 59th annual Grammy Awards ceremony was held at Los Angeles’ Staples Center, and all of the categories with MTSU-related nominees were announced during the pre-show nontelevised ceremony. This year’s Grammys recognized music released between Oct. 1, 2015, and Sept. 30, 2016.
MTSU also was represented at several pre-Grammy events around L.A. over the weekend and announced a new educational partnership with the Grammy Museum. You can read those stories here.
Both Young and Scott, who attended MTSU in the 2000s, have established scholarships in the university’s Department of Recording Industry to help students working toward careers in the music industry. Young announced his scholarship for MTSU junior and senior students Thanksgiving weekend, while Scott established her scholarship for female recording industry students in September 2015.
“Think of You” also was a contender for a 2016 Country Music Association award for “Musical Event of the Year.” Young also was nominated for a Grammy in 2010 for best male country vocal performance for “Gettin’ You Home.”
Scott and Lady Antebellum have been nominated for more than two dozen CMA and Grammy Awards. They won the 2010 Grammy for best country performance by a duo or group for “I Run to You” and swept the 2011 Grammys with awards for record of the year, song of the year, best country album, best country song and best country group performance for “Need You Now.”
King, a multiple Dean’s List honoree while at MTSU, already operates his own recording studio as well as working at local studios with a production team. His website, http://bradkingaudio.com, lists several albums he’s engineered for Christian artists, including Brady Toops, Seth Talley & Natalie Schlab and the group NewSong.
Fisher, who recently took the CEO’s post at the California-based Academy of Country Music after 17 years at the Opry’s helm, earned a bachelor’s degree in recording industry management from MTSU in 1987 and was recognized as a distinguished alumnus in 2004. He also serves on the Board of Trust for the College of Media and Entertainment.
The complete list of this year’s Grammy nominees and winners is available at www.grammy.com/nominees.
MTSU’s Department of Recording Industry, for the third straight year, is part of an international list of acclaimed music schools praised by The Hollywood Reporter that includes Juilliard, Berklee and London’s Royal College of Music. The department is No. 18 on the magazine’s “Top 25 Music Schools 2016,” which was part of the Dec. 2 edition of the publication.
You can learn more about MTSU’s recording industry program, part of the College of Media and Entertainment, at www.mtsu.edu/recording-industry.
— Gina E. Fann (firstname.lastname@example.org)