The music industry’s Grammy Awards show event took place Sunday night, but given the manner in which such award shows have become hyper-partisan and politicized affairs in recent years, most Americans declined to tune in and watch the program.
In doing so, however, they missed the fact that former Democratic President Jimmy Carter won the Best Spoken Word Album award for his latest audiobook titled “Faith: A Journey For All,” which delves into how Carter has relied on his deep Christian faith throughout both the good and bad times in his life.
The city of Atlanta, Georgia, wasted no time in applauding the famed former president who hails from that state with a congratulatory tweet.
Congratulations to Former President Jimmy Carter on winning a Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album for his book “Faith – A Journey For All.” pic.twitter.com/76uFaxPlYQ
— City of Atlanta, GA (@CityofAtlanta) February 10, 2019
Third-oldest Grammy winner
The Huffington Post reported that this is actually the ninth nomination and second Grammy award won — though other sources claim this is Carter’s third Grammy — for the 94-year-old 39th president, as he took home the same spoken word category award in 2016 for the audiobook of his memoir “A Full Life: Reflections at Ninety.”
This second award ties Carter with both of his Democratic successors who have also won a pair of Grammys each in the spoken word category.
Former President Bill Clinton won the award in 2004 for his narration of the “Peter and the Wolf” story and again in 2005 for the audiobook of his memoir “My Life,” while former President Barack Obama won the award in 2006 and 2008 for the audiobook versions of “Dreams From My Father” and “The Audacity of Hope,” respectively.
The award also made Carter the third-oldest individual to win a Grammy in the history of the award show. The oldest winner was then-97-yeard-old musician Pinetop Perkins, who won an award for best blues album in 2011, while the second oldest winner was then-95-year-old comedian George Burns, who won the spoken word award in 1991.
Ratings slightly improved
The Hollywood Reporter noted that initial reports indicated that this year’s Grammy Awards program fared slightly better ratings-wise than last year’s event, which drew the lowest ratings and smallest audience since 2009.
Though the official numbers have yet to be released, this year’s show appears to have drawn about 1 percent more viewers than last year, which may have been attributable to the lineup of musical performers at the show, but could also be due to the fact that there wasn’t much else on TV Sunday night to compete against the award show.
No longer the worst president?
In years past, Carter was often referred to as one of the worst presidents this nation had ever endured. However, given the behavior of his successors — both Democrat and Republican — and his outspokenness about faith and humanitarian efforts over the years, the general view of Carter has improved immensely over time.
Furthermore, given the fact that he was just recognized for yet again speaking openly about his Christian faith, we should all congratulate him for not only winning the Best Spoken Word Album honor, but also for helping to inject discussions of faith in to the national conversation.