New Grammy awards include one for video game scores

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Video games get a Grammy. The Recording Academy has introduced a new award for Best Soundtrack for Video Games and Other Interactive Media to be awarded from 2023. The new award is part of a series of changes and several other new award categories, including including a “Special Merit Award”. for Best Song for Social Change and Best Spoken Poetry Album

According to the Academy’s announcement, the video game award will recognize “excellence in soundtrack albums consisting primarily of original scores and created specifically for or as a complement to a current video game or other released interactive media.” during the qualifying period.

‘It’s like Coltrane’: Jon Batiste sees jazz and genius in video game soundtracks

Grammy-winning artists are already gamers. Jon Batiste, the jazz musician and bandleader of “The Late Show,” told The Post in 2019 that video game scores and soundtracks first inspired him to become a musician. In April, Batiste won five Grammys, including one for album of the year. He told The Post that his favorite game is Square Enix’s “Final Fantasy VII,” which features a four-hour score with melodic interludes and climactic opera tracks for boss battles.

“Music in games is very important to me,” Batiste said in 2019. “It taught me a lot about music and life and everything.”

Jon Batiste explains why video games like Street Fighter II and Sonic the Hedgehog influenced the music he plays on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.” (Video: Jhaan Elker/The Washington Post)

Then there’s Michelle Zauner, the Japanese Breakfast singer and author of the best-selling “Crying in H Mart,” who composed the soundtrack for “Sable,” an indie open-world adventure released last September. When the game was first released, Zauner told Slate Magazine that the game’s ending theme, “Better the Mask”, was her favorite song she had ever written.

You could say that Kirby has also already won a Grammy. This year, 8-Bit Big Band’s Charlie Rosen and Jake Silverman won a Grammy for Best Instrumental or A Cappella Arrangement with their rendition of Meta Knight’s Revenge, a track from the 1996 classic “Kirby Superstar.”

The latest from Summer Game Fest

And video game soundtracks are starting to become collectibles in their own right. Online stores like iam8bit sell limited release vinyl copies of music from some games big and small, including “Outer Wilds”, “Untitled Goose Game” and others.

Video games are already getting Oscar nods. Last year, “Colette”, a short film featured in the virtual reality game “Medal of Honor: Above and Beyond”, won the Oscar for Best Documentary. “Colette” tells the story of a 92-year-old French woman who was part of the resistance during the Second World War. The project was funded by Electronic Arts and Meta, which owns Oculus VR and was later published by The Guardian.