October 31, 2014 05:32 UTC

Entertainment

Grammy Organization Honors Bruce Springsteen with Humanitarian Award

Read, listen and learn English with this story. Double-click on any word to find the definition in the Merriam-Webster Learner's Dictionary.

Bruce Springsteen performing at the 12-12-12 Concert for Sandy Relief at Madison Square Garden
Bruce Springsteen performing at the 12-12-12 Concert for Sandy Relief at Madison Square Garden

Multimedia

Play or download an MP3 of this story
Welcome to AMERICAN MOSAIC in VOA Special English.
 
I’m June Simms.
 
It is February, you know what that means! Entertainment awards season has opened in the United States!
 
Today on the show, we have some a Grammy humanitarian story and music from a nominated group… That awards ceremony is Sunday…
But first we tell about some Academy Award nominations…

Oscar Nominees
 
Start making your lists. You have two more weeks to make predictions on which Hollywood stars and their movies will win Academy Awards this year.                                                                                                 
One movie nominated for the Best Picture award is the Stephen Spielberg film Lincoln. It tells how the 16th president of the United States pushed to end slavery.
 
Daniel Day-Lewis was nominated for the Best Actor award for his role as Lincoln.
 
“Abolishing slavery by constitutional provision settles the fate for all coming time, not only of the millions now in bondage, but of unborn millions to come.”   

Sally Field is a nominee for Best Supporting Actress for playing the president’s wife, Mary Todd Lincoln.
 
“No one’s ever been loved so much by the people. Don’t waste that power.”
 
Sally Field and Daniel Day Lews are both nominated for their work in the movie "Lincoln"Sally Field and Daniel Day Lews are both nominated for their work in the movie "Lincoln"
x
Sally Field and Daniel Day Lews are both nominated for their work in the movie "Lincoln"
Sally Field and Daniel Day Lews are both nominated for their work in the movie "Lincoln"
Recently, Sally Field spoke about playing an emotional first lady who lived in a time of national crisis.
 
“You don’t tap into any one emotion. You try to live in this place, these other people’s shoes that you create through the techniques of learning their history and everything about them, and then the era and the clothes and then the actual immediacy of that day.”
 
The movie Argo is also nominated for Best Picture at the Academy Awards, or Oscars. Argo tells the story of six Americans who escape the unrest in Tehran during the 1979 Iranian revolution. They escaped with the help of American agents who make believe they are filming a science fiction movie.  The unlikely story was based on real events. 
 
Actor and director Ben Affleck starred in the movie. Argo was named best dramatic film at the Golden Globes awards last month. The Directors Guild of America honored Ben Affleck, but he failed to win a nomination for best director Oscar. The actor says he is happy with seven other nominations, including one for best picture.
 
“I’m elated by that, truly, genuinely thrilled. And, like I said, there are nine amazing movies, any of which could win, any of which deserve to win if they did. So I don’t get into worrying too much about who got what and didn’t get what.”
 
Another nominated film, Zero Dark Thirty, tells the story of the hunt for al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden. The story involves an American intelligence agent, played by Jessica Chastain. She is a nominee for the Oscar for the Best Actress.
 
“For me, I feel like I’ve already won. And so, I never want to lose sight of what I feel right now and being in this business and being nominated.”
 
Other leading films include the musical Les Miserables and Life of Pi, the story of a boy trapped on a lifeboat with a Bengal tiger.                                                                                       
The leading entry for best foreign film is Amour. The French-language film tells about aging and loss.  It is a nominee for best picture.      
 
A producer of the Oscar ceremony, Craig Zadan, says this has been a great year for movies, so the show should be exciting. Unlike other years, he says, a lot of people have seen many of the films. The awards will be presented on February 24th in Los Angeles.
 
Bruce Springsteen Honored for Aid Work

Celebrations for the Grammy Awards start long before the actual event this Sunday. On Friday, singer Bruce Springsteen receives the 2013 MusiCares Person of the Year Award. Karen Leggett has more.
 
Each year, the National Recording Association of Arts and Sciences presents the MusiCares Person of the Year Award.
 
Bruce Springsteen is being honored for his success as a musician and for his efforts to help other people. His shows have helped raise money for hundreds of causes, including campaigns for fighting Parkinson’s disease, hunger and homelessness.
 
Elton John performing in Ukraine last yearElton John performing in Ukraine last year
x
Elton John performing in Ukraine last year
Elton John performing in Ukraine last year
The head of the MusicCares Foundation Board says Bruce Springsteen shows that we can all do our part to make the world a better place.
 
The Friday night event itself raises money for MusicCares. Since 1989, the group has helped people in need in the music industry. MusicCares provides emergency financial assistance and help for musicians with health or drug problems. It also organized a program to help music people affected by Superstorm Sandy. The storm damaged many coastal communities in New Jersey and New York State last October.
 
The Bruce Springsteen celebration will include performances by Jackson Browne, Emmylou Harris, Elton John, Neil Young and others. Every ticket was sold long before the day of the event.
 
As one person wrote on the grammy.com website, Bruce Springsteen “is that rare artist who not only speaks for us … but who cares deeply about what he represents. One can always find in his music the truth that we are not alone.”

Sisters With Voices To Perform at Grammy Awards

At this Sunday’s Grammy Awards, many people will be watching and listening for a group that is now back together after a fifteen years out of the spotlight.  Jim Tedder has more about SWV.
 
We first heard from “Sisters With Voices” 20 years ago.  The three women from New York City had a number of hits in the 1990’s including “I’m So Into You,” “Right Here,” “You’re the One,” and “Weak.”
 
But success was not enough to keep band together.  They disagreed over many things, and then stopped performing in 1998.

"It was a tumultuous breakup, actually.  And we spent years not even talking.”
 
The singing group SWVThe singing group SWV
x
The singing group SWV
The singing group SWV
That’s SWV’s Tamara Johnson George.   She says, as time went by, she, LeeLee Lyons, and Coko Clemmons realized they needed each other.   So in April of 2012, they came out with a new CD called “I Missed Us.” 
 
“And it is really and truly one of the best albums we’ve ever done.”

The people who vote for the possible Grammy winners must agree.  They have nominated SWV and four other acts for the “Best Traditional Rhythm and Blues Performance.”  SWV recorded their version of “If Only You Knew,” a song that Patti LaBelle sang nearly 30 years ago.
 
SWV was last nominated for a Grammy in 1993.  But the music business has changed a lot since then.  Tamara says that in the old days, the recording business did everything it could for the band.  But now …

”In this new industry, you have to be well rounded.  You can’t just be a pretty face anymore.  That no longer floats.”
 
The three ladies of SWV say they have spent a lot of time this week selecting dresses, shoes, and the right make-up and hair styles for Sunday’s awards program. Winning a Grammy could be just what they need to help them achieve the fame they once enjoyed.
This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Learn with The News

  • A convoy of peshmerga vehicles is escorted by Turkish Kurds on their way to the Turkish-Syrian border, in Kiziltepe near the southeastern city of Mardin October 29, 2014

    Audio Iraqi Kurdish Fighters Enter Kobani

    Also in the news, Burkina Faso ends efforts to extend its presidential term limit after protests in the capital. Ukraine says the EU will be guarantor in any gas deal with Russia. Myanmar holds a major meeting Friday. And claims of cheating delay SAT results for South Korean and Chinese students. More

  • Ghana Bamboo Bike

    Video Ghana's Bamboo Bikes Hit the Streets

    Bicycle frames are usually made out of materials like carbon fiber, steel or aluminum. But in rural Ghana, a businessman has developed another way to make bicycles from a natural product -- bamboo. The wooden bike parts are sent Ghana to Germany, the Netherlands and Australia. | As It Is More

  • Video Singapore Film Ban Raises Free Speech Issue

    The documentary film, “To Singapore, with Love” tells about political dissidents from Singapore. The film has been shown at public events in Britain, India and Malaysia, among other countries. But one place the movie cannot be seen is Singapore. That is because the government there has banned it. More

  • Believer Benito Martinez (C), dressed as a "devil" wearing a mask, walks around in Almonacid del Marquesado, in central Spain, during the "Endiablada" traditional festival, Feb. 3, 2014.

    Audio A Halloween Special: The Devil is Everywhere ...

    Today we take you to the Dark Side. (insert evil laugh here) We teach expressions that involve the king of evil – the devil. Read on to learn how to “speak of the devil”, “to play devil’s advocate” and to ”make a deal with the devil.” | Words and Their Stories More

  • Orbital Sciences Antares Launch

    Video Questions for NASA after Rocket Explosion

    An unmanned privately-owned rocket bringing supplies to the International Space Station exploded seconds after launch Tuesday night. The accident did not cause any injuries on the ground. However, it has raised questions about efforts by the US space agency NASA to use private companies. More

Featured Stories

  • Obama Halloween

    Audio Halloween Is Big with Kids and Business

    The National Retail Federation says sales of Halloween goods will total about $7.4 billion this year. It says the average American will spend about $77. The group expects 162 million people to celebrate. The NRF predicts 54 million of them will hold Halloween parties. | American Mosaic More

  • A print shows the Second Battle of Bull Run, also called Second Manassas.

    Audio South Defeats North Again at Manassas

    Lincoln named George Pope to lead the Army of Virginia. He wanted to join Pope’s forces with the Army of the Potomac and break through Confederate defenses around Richmond. But General Robert E. Lee decided to hit Pope first. More

  • Star House

    Video Home of Last Comanche Chief Close to Ruins

    One of the most interesting people in U.S. history is Quanah Parker, the last chief of the country’s Comanche Indian tribe. Quanah Parker was the son of a Comanche warrior and a white woman who had been captured by the Indians. Quanah Parker was a fierce fighter. But that ended one day in 1875. More

  • FILE - A veterinarian at the nonprofit Bali Animal Welfare Association gives a rabies shot to a puppy in Kebon Kaja village, Bangli Regency in Bali, Indonesia.

    Audio Mass Vaccination of Dogs Can Eliminate Rabies

    About 70,000 people worldwide die every year of rabies. Rabies is a viral infection that people get mainly through dog bites. Scientists say vaccinating dogs can effectively get rid of rabies outbreaks in dog populations. And this will have a domino effect, fewer humans with rabies. More

  • Methane oxidizing

    Photogallery Small Organisms in Deep Sea Rocks Eat Methane

    The gas methane has been linked to rising temperatures on Earth. But methane does not stay in the atmosphere as long as another “greenhouse gas” -- carbon dioxide. Scientists say both gases trap heat from the sun. They prevent heat from escaping into outer space. More

Practice Your Writing

Confessions of an English Learner BlogConfessions of an English Learner Blog

Tell us About Our Programs