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Grammy week means it’s time for the beleaguered music biz to celebrate, giving everyone a chance to turn those lemons into a Stoli cocktail. From exclusive hotel hangs (Red Light Management hosts clients like Ben Harper at the Mondrian) to massive soundstage soirees (like the annual Friends & Family event), more than 30 events are scheduled in the days leading up to music’s biggest night.
One person who won’t be partaking: Grammys executive producer Ken Ehrlich. (“I’ll be at the Pantry at 2 a.m. after the show,” he cracks.)
Here are the top 10 weekend events with the most preshow buzz:
MUSICARES PERSON OF THE YEAR GALA AT THE L.A. CONVENTION CENTER (Jan. 24): Performers like James Taylor, the Dixie Chicks, Lady Gaga, Bette Midler and Jason Mraz will pay tribute to 2014’s honoree, Carole King, and raise funds for the Recording Academy charity.
300 ENTERTAINMENT X ENCORE SESSIONS GRAMMY AWARDS WEEKEND PARTY AT THE STANDARD (Jan. 24): Music mogul Lyor Cohen introduces his new WMG venture, with performances by ASTR and a DJ set by Been Trill, sponsored by Absolut Elyx.
VIBE SECOND ANNUAL PRE-GRAMMY IMPACT AWARDS AT CARONDELET HOUSE (Jan. 24): Rap icon Nas will be honored in recognition of his influence on hip-hop culture over the past two decades.
BEATS MUSIC LAUNCH AT THE BELASCO THEATRE (Jan. 24): Hosted by Jimmy Iovine, Dr. Dre, Len Blavatnik, Marc Rowan, Trent Reznor, Luke Wood and Ian Rogers, the newest, “human-curated” streaming music service makes its bow with the promise: “Watch an incredible playlist come to life with special guests and performances.”
PRIMARY WAVE PRE-GRAMMY PARTY AT THE RIVABELLA (Jan. 24): Industry types usually make a stop at this always-lively affair before heading for Clive Davis‘ soiree. Look for the pubbery/management company’s Cee Lo Green and recently inked client Melissa Etheridge among the celebrants.
UMG SHOWCASE AT THE LURE NIGHTCLUB (Jan. 25): Universal Music Group chairman Lucian Grainge‘s noon soiree has become a must-attend. Last year, participants received free Beats by Dre headphones. This year, Lorde and Kacey Musgraves will play.
PRE-GRAMMY GALA AT THE BEVERLY HILTON (Jan. 25): Clive Davis‘ annual bash is a who’s who of celebrities, this year honoring UMG’s Grainge. Performances by newcomers and veterans alike tend to go late into the night, so don’t let Clive see you splitting early.
2014 WAMMYS AT ST. NICK’S PUB (Jan. 25) Counterprogramming Clive Davis‘ competing soiree is this hipster hang with karaoke hosted by Dhani Harrison, boutique PR agency Big Hassle, Fender and Hot Records. Last year’s attendees included My Morning Jacket’s Jim James.
UNIVERSAL MUSIC AFTERPARTY AT ACE HOTEL DOWNTOWN (Jan. 26): The world’s largest music group should be celebrating their share of Grammy night winners with chief Lucian Grainge and company. This year’s bash could see appearances by Taylor Swift and Robin Thicke.
RED LIGHT MANAGEMENT 2014 GRAMMY AWARDS AFTERPARTY AT SKYBAR AT THE MONDRIAN (Jan. 26): The most democratic of all the parties (read: least exclusive), but always a good time, especially because they’re not stingy with the plus-ones.
A version of this story first appeared in the Jan. 31 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
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