Los Angeles – None of the Grammy nominees was more surprised than Chris Morris, who was taking notes along with the rest of the press corps Tuesday morning when he heard his name announced among the luminaries.
Morris, who joined The Hollywood Reporter as music editor in September, was nominated for the liner notes he wrote for “No Thanks! The ’70s Punk Rebellion.”
That Rhino Records compilation of various artists gives an overview of the genre’s early days by gathering 100 songs in a four-CD boxed set. Morris contributed a definitive context for the music in a thoroughly researched 116-page booklet that captured punk’s intelligent, unpretentious and irreverent spirit.
Morris previously annotated the Los Lobos compilation “El Cancionero – Mas y Mas” (Rhino); the boxed sets “Howlin’ Wolf: The Chess Box” (MCA) and “Elmore James: King of the Slide Guitar” (Capricorn); and collections devoted to Muddy Waters, Bo Diddley, Chuck Berry, Buddy Guy, the Band, the Blasters and the Jayhawks, among many others.
His perspective and insights on music have been respected for nearly two decades, during which Morris established himself as an advocate for alternative music. Before joining The Reporter, he had been at Billboard since 1986 – the past dozen years as senior writer. His writing has appeared in a host of publications including the Los Angeles Times, Rolling Stone, Spin, Mojo and LA Weekly. He also writes a bi-weekly column for Los Angeles CityBeat.
The other nominees in the best album notes category were Sean Wilentz, for Bob Dylan’s “The Bootleg Series Vol. 6: Bob Dylan Live 1964 – Concert at Philharmonic Hall” (Columbia/Legacy); Barry Alfonso, for Peter, Paul and Mary’s “Carry It On” (Warner Bros./Rhino Records); Loren Schoenberg, for “The Complete Columbia Recordings of Woody Herman and His Orchestra & Woodchoppers (1945-1947)” (Mosaic Records); and Paul Krassner, for Lenny Bruce’s “Let the Buyer Beware” (Shout! Factory).
Winners of the 47th annual Grammy Awards will be announced Feb. 13 at the Staples Center.