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Quick Takes: Grammy suit dismissed

May 01, 2012

Grammy suit dismissed

A New York judge has dismissed a suit aimed at forcing the Recording Academy to rescind its decision last year to slash the number of Grammy Awards from 109 to 78.

Latin jazz musician Bobby Sanabria, one of those who filed the lawsuit on grounds that it devalued the music and musicians in the categories that were either eliminated or consolidated, said Monday that he and his lawyers intended to file an appeal.

Recording Academy President Neil Portnow praised the judge's decision and said he did not anticipate any massive overhauls to next year's nominations and awards when officials meet in late May to plan for the 2013 Grammys.

"I think there will be individual tweaks and adjustments based on a review of how it went last year and what's going on in music," he said.

—Todd Martens

Conductor takes time to recover

Kurt Masur, the renowned German conductor, is withdrawing from concerts through the end of June after falling off the podium last week during a concert in Paris. His website states that he suffered a fractured left shoulder blade.

Masur, 84, hopes to resume conducting in September, the website said.

He fell off the podium Thursday while conducting a concert at Paris' Théâtre des Champs-Elysées with the Orchestre National de France. Doctors expect him to make a full recovery.

—David Ng

Traffic eases in festival area

Indio Police spokesman Ben Guitron said his department and other city emergency teams overall were "very pleased" with new measures taken to alleviate traffic problems going in and out of the Stagecoach Country Music Festival.

Shuttles from area hotels helped considerably, he said, even though far fewer Stagecoach attendees used the buses than those who attended Coachella two weekends earlier. Close to 25,000 people used the shuttles during Coachella; only around 3,000 to 4,000 did so at Stagecoach. But more Stagecoach-goers camped in adjoining campgrounds than at Coachella.

Guitron reported a total of 139 arrests as of 6:30 p.m. Sunday, the vast majority for alcohol-related offenses. That compared with 134 arrests on the first weekend of Coachella, and 102 on its second weekend, those for a combination of alcohol and drug issues.

—Randy Lewis

New Orleans marks Jazz Day

As the morning sun spilled over the New Orleans skyline Monday, jazz musicians Herbie Hancock, Ellis Marsalis and others kicked off International Jazz Day with a sunrise concert that included ritual drumming and a string of performances.

Trumpeters Terence Blanchard and Kermit Ruffins, singer Stephanie Jordan and others performed "On the Sunny Side of the Street" and "Afro Blue" as the sun rose on Congo Square, an area near the French Quarter neighborhood where slaves once gathered on Sundays to play music.

Hundreds crowded the stage, some dancing and waving white handkerchiefs to the music.

The New Orleans event was one of two official Jazz Day concerts to be held in the United States on Monday. The other was in New York that night with performances by Tony Bennett, Stevie Wonder, Chaka Khan and others.

—Associated Press

HBO renews two comedies

Two first-year HBO comedies have been renewed for second seasons: Lena Dunham's much buzzed-about "Girls" and Armando Iannucci's "Veep."

Both shows got 10-episode renewals.

Dunham's "Girls," which has aired three episodes, recounts the lives and loves of a group of twentysomething Brooklyn women.

"Veep" is about the life of a fictional U.S. vice president played by Julia Louis-Dreyfus.

Both series premiered to about 1 million viewers apiece. By comparison, HBO's "Game of Thrones" premiered to more than 2 million viewers in its first season.

—Patrick Kevin Day

Christie doesn't mind Kimmel

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie says having a sexy television star seated beside him made it easier to absorb the fat jokes Jimmy Kimmel made at his expense during the White House Correspondents' Assn. dinner.

Christie told reporters Monday that "when you have [Sofia Vergara] next to you to console you, let me tell you, you don't care what the heck Jimmy Kimmel is saying about you."

Vergara stars on the ABC sitcom "Modern Family."

Kimmel made three jokes about the overweight governor during a monologue Saturday night that also cracked on President Obama's thinness.

—Associated Press

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