February 9th, 2009
12:56 AM ET

How Plant met Krauss

Multiple winners Robert Plant and Alison Krauss were the last musical act to come backstage and they told us how this remarkable partnership came together.

"Well, I got lost in Nashville on my way to London," Plant began.

Now, seriously: "Bill Flanagan from VH1, he's a buccaneer, suggested we might consider some sort of adventure together ... and we were lucky to have a little window of opportunity to have one or two."

They decided to give it three days - three days to see if there was any magic there. "Commandeered" and "steered" by producer T Bone Burnett, who "conjured up a whole world," the duo gave it a shot and by day two knew they had something special. Then three days was extended to ten days, and so on and so forth, and the rest is history.

Later, Recording Academy head Neil Portnow came out and told us about the quick planning they had to do to compensate for the absence of Chris Brown and Rihanna. They were notified by their respective management teams in the afternoon, which forced the show's producers to be "nimble" and work around it.

Portnow thought the solution for Brown's absence worked well: "Years from now, this will be one of those great Grammy moments, Justin, Al Green and Keith Urban doing a great song [Green's 'Let's Stay Together'] that is relevant to the moment culturally." He also said it was his hope that tonight won't be overshadowed by the Brown story. That remains to be seen.

I'll leave you with one last Grammy snapshot. Several hours ago I was eating lunch in our one-on-one interview room, which is a converted corporate suite overlooking the floor of the Staples Center. And I hear this beautiful voice ringing out through the arena. It was one of those transcendent moments that stops you cold. It was Adele (who would later win the best new artist and best female pop vocal performance) and the song was "Chasing Pavements." I put down the sandwich I was eating and just had to stick my nose through a crack in the curtain and listen to her perform.

A stolen moment among the chaos. Pure bliss.

- Douglas Hyde, CNN Entertainment Producer

Filed under: Music

soundoff (37 Responses)
  1. liza

    anne hathaway's dress is so shimery like water in the sun!!!!

    February 22, 2009 at 8:18 pm | Report abuse |
  2. liza

    hi dad! i'm in the living room while you are in the office watching nominations! (hee hee)

    February 22, 2009 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse |
  3. liza

    mileys dress looks like shimering diamonds!!!

    February 22, 2009 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse |
  4. sunny

    Slumdog millionaire will win the best picture award. All the best.

    February 22, 2009 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse |
  5. David Zonshayn

    Revolutionary Road is highly over rated.

    February 22, 2009 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
  6. liza

    slum dog millionare has got to win soooommme award

    February 22, 2009 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
  7. liza

    i vote for all the nominees!!!!!!!!!!

    February 22, 2009 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Bob

    Hi Mom!
    I am on the computer!

    February 22, 2009 at 7:57 pm | Report abuse |
  9. liza

    all the stars look amazing in their wonderful dresses!!!!!

    February 22, 2009 at 7:56 pm | Report abuse |
  10. liza

    Go Miley Cyrus! go Miley Cyrus! Her dress is completely amazing!!!

    February 22, 2009 at 7:52 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Anonymous

    Miley Cyrus' dress is astounding! She looks stupendous...

    February 22, 2009 at 7:51 pm | Report abuse |
  12. liza

    the oscars are sooo cool!!!!

    February 22, 2009 at 7:49 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Susan Helene

    Keith Ledger should be given a Honorable Mention, and allow the LIVING actors their chance to Shine for their efforts..

    February 22, 2009 at 7:29 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Jan

    The rich and famous congratulating themselves on being rich and famous. And getting free gowns and fabulous gifts backstage. It must be great not to be "regular" people. Yeah Oscars. Not.

    February 22, 2009 at 7:27 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Kirsten

    Best interview so far tonight: the kids joining the Slumdog entourage.
    Dresses? Love the tailoring and lines of Amy Adam's chic red dress but the pharaoh necklace ruins it. The eye stops; chokes on the onslaught of color.

    February 22, 2009 at 7:15 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Adam

    I'd rather watch the Razzies.

    February 22, 2009 at 7:09 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Joe

    Marisa Tomei is the best supporting actress in the catagory

    February 22, 2009 at 7:08 pm | Report abuse |
  18. Wanda Pitser

    I absolutely loved this album. I saw Plant and Krause sing on a CMT appearance and they were singing some of the music from this album and I knew then that they had a hit! I bought the album and play it all the time. Hope they can get together again. Thanks T Bone, you sure have a knack with putting this music together with the right people.

    February 21, 2009 at 2:24 am | Report abuse |
  19. John

    I was at the Zeppeling reunion show in London. It was one of the best live shows I have ever seen and I've been to a lot of them. While Plant may not hit every high note he did 1n 1971, both the london show and the subsequent Plant Krauss shows were superb.

    My 6 year old twins saw the Plant/Krauss show from the second row. It will be fun for them to say 35 years from now they got to hear Black Dog, Black country Women and the Battle of Everymore.

    I really hope Plant decides to go out with the boys for one more tour. It woudl be the tour of the decade, different than the 70's but well worth it if it occurs. If you were not at the Zeppelin show in London, then one does not know what this group can do united.

    February 20, 2009 at 10:04 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Shelley

    Jennifer, is great!!! she is coming back from the heartbreak of her family. Hang in there Jennifer take so time to relax an be still and listen to your heart

    February 19, 2009 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Jacob

    "Rap music is terrible, the filthy lyrics are degrading to women and so very violent. It’s nothing but trash. Why does anyone listen to it, especially women?"

    Thanks for the best laugh I have had all day, that is one of the most ignorant things I have ever read.

    February 16, 2009 at 4:05 pm | Report abuse |
  22. marcelo

    Anything R.Plant does will be enhanced by fans from every music style segment. This album with A Krauss is as far as he will go with his past as the former lead singer of Led Zeppelin. His voice is not the same as it was in 1978. Jimmy Page should decide in honor of all those who support their music to go on tour with a younger singer or group of individual singers that would show all their songs to new and old generations and show how rock was made. A Jones,Page and Boham tour will make any lead singer proud of being part of it.
    Strong personalities make groups break up. Remember the Beatles?
    Come on Jimmy we need to have live contact with Led Zeppelin.

    February 16, 2009 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Curt Campbell

    I don't like this Alison Krauss Robert Plant recordings...Nothing moves me in the songs...They got grammys because of who they are not what the music is doing...

    February 15, 2009 at 2:59 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Heartbreaker

    Plant cant hit high notes like he used to. That is why he won't do a Led Zep reunion. He doesn't want to have to go from city to city being ripped by the local press every show as they write about how he can't sing like he did years ago on the records.

    February 14, 2009 at 10:09 am | Report abuse |
  25. anthony

    They never have real talent, like Rush or Tool.

    February 13, 2009 at 4:26 pm | Report abuse |
  26. Rus

    Peach –
    While Plant may not be able to howl like a banshee as he did 3 decades ago – it would not be disrespectful to Bonham to give it a whirl. To allow the music to be played and heard is the key – and Bonham would have probably wanted that.

    Plant and Page can and have brought Zep music down a new road since then and while John Bonham is gone, playing his music (where he was a contributor) is a homage to the man.

    February 13, 2009 at 4:24 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Sara

    Profound, T BONE....Who wouldv'e ever thought??? As a former flower child, this was just awesome!!! Thank you so much..Keep on Truckin' ( smile )

    February 13, 2009 at 4:21 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Peach

    I wouldnt go as far as to say it is a great album, but very good considering it is two very diverse talents brought together.

    The real kudos should go to T Bone.

    As far as Zeppelin, Plant knows he cant bring it like he did 30 years ago, and knows anything short of the howling banshee he was would be blaphemy in the likes of spitting on the grave of John Bonham,

    February 12, 2009 at 3:11 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Mel

    Matthew, Plant will probably still reunite. He just took a little detour and made some incredible music with Krauss.
    I'm glad they won.

    February 10, 2009 at 6:55 pm | Report abuse |
  30. AC CT


    February 10, 2009 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
  31. Frank B

    Cold play should never be considered rock. They are completely adult comtemp if anything. They are talentless whine bags.

    February 10, 2009 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
  32. Jimmy

    What about Slipknot? Coldplay is not hard rock!

    February 10, 2009 at 10:39 am | Report abuse |
  33. Jimmy

    Shouldn't GNR have been up for Hard Rock?

    February 10, 2009 at 10:38 am | Report abuse |
  34. Donna Pelletier

    Raising Sand has been my favorite album since it first came out. Each song on it is a treasure. This summer I took my 19 year old son to see Robert Plant and Alison Krauss in concert and we both enjoyed it. A great mixture of music ranging from pure bluegrass to The Battle of Evermore & Blackdog. Congratulations to them on their wins.

    February 10, 2009 at 5:25 am | Report abuse |
  35. Matthew

    I think a better title for this article would be "How Krauss distracted Plant from reuniting with Led Zeppelin".

    February 9, 2009 at 11:09 pm | Report abuse |
  36. C

    i agree

    February 9, 2009 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
  37. K

    Raising Sand is a really good album. Krauss and Plant are legends in bluegrass and rock and surprisingly great together. Great job by T Bone Burnett on this album. Well deserved accolades.

    Rap music is terrible, the filthy lyrics are degrading to women and so very violent. It’s nothing but trash. Why does anyone listen to it, especially women?

    Radiohead rocks, Coldplay has totally ripped them off, Radiohead never gets their due.

    February 9, 2009 at 1:06 am | Report abuse |

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