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Grammy winner Gary Clark Jr. represents for Austin

Deborah Sengupta

Editor’s note: This article was originally published January 26, 2014

Homegrown Austin blues artist and guitar whiz gone big Gary Clark Jr. received a Grammy nomination for Best Rock Song for “Ain’t Messin’ Around,” but no one expected him to win. That award predictably went to rock giants Paul McCartney and Dave Grohl for their collaboration “Cut Me Some Slack.”

It turned out that Clark also wasn’t expecting to win Best Traditional R&B Performance for “Please Come Home.” When he took the stage to accept the trophy during the pre-Grammy web cast, the young artist openly admitted that he failed to heed the advice of everyone who encouraged him to prepare a speech. He graciously thanked his family, his girlfriend and local consultant Kris Krishna. He also apologized to everyone he forgot. Then, most endearingly, he made a shout-out to Eve Monsees, a fellow rocker and Austin High grad who he said introduced him to Austin clubs as a youth.

Clark also performed at the Grammys, appearing alongside country superstar Keith Urban in a somewhat awkward collaboration on the track “Cop Car” that didn’t really make sense until the end of the song when Urban handed the guitar solo over to Clark and he lit it on fire.

The only other Grammy that will come home to Austin this year went to art directors Sarah Dodds and Shauna Dodds who were nominated for Best Recording Package for the work that they did on Reckless Kelly’s “Long Night Moon.”

Wimberley artist Sarah Jarosz lost out to fellow Texan Guy Clark, a celebrated songwriter with strong Austin connections in the Best Folk Album category. Another Texas native Edie Brickell bested Jarosz for Best American Roots Song. Onetime Austin resident Buddy Miller was bested by Houston native Rodney Crowell and Emmylou Harris for the Best Americana Album award and the Best Blues Album award predictably went to Charlie Musselwhite and Ben Harper, beating out Chicago blues great and current Austin resident James Cotton.