Music professor Steven Mackey and collaborators Rinde Eckert and eighth blackbird won the 2011 Grammy for Best Small Ensemble Performance. The collective’s 11-track album, Lonely Motel: Music from “Slide,” was nominated in four categories, including a Best Contemporary Composition nod for Mackey. Drawn from a music theater piece that premiered at the 2009 Ojai (Calif.) Music Festival, the album features Mackey on electric guitar, Eckert on vocals, and the new-age sextet eighth blackbird on instrumentals.
Mackey, the chairman of the University’s music department, began his musical career as a rock guitarist and has composed music for orchestras, chamber ensembles, dance, and opera. He joined the Princeton faculty in 1985.
Below, listen to a brief excerpt from Lonely Motel: Music from “Slide.”