Amrita Tripathi is a news anchor with CNN-IBN, and also doubles up as Health and Books Editor. An MA in Philosophy from St Stephen's College, Delhi University, she has also taught a few undergraduate classes at her alma mater, informally! When she is not tracking health issues, Amrita is busy chasing the literary dream. Her debut novel Broken News
was published in 2010. Before joining CNN-IBN, Amrita worked with The Indian Express
So many songs in my head - so little time to choose an appropriate soundtrack, to this blog. You pick - from California Dreaming... to LA Woman or Cah-lii-fforr-nnia Gurrls.
This is LA - and somehow, it's exactly how you'd picture it, and not at all - at the same time. There's something in the air, there's something about some of these effortlessly cool people, and defintely something about Hollywood that draws in hordes of tourists. (Note to self: when locals here say Hollywood, they're talking Hollywood Boulevard, which I've driven down at break-neck speed now, looking for appropriate sites to shoot. They don't mean Hollywood, as embodied by Leo diCaprio or Mark Wahlberg (though I just met someone who spent 9 months working on a movie with him...of course he did, this is LA!) ... But said boulevard is a good place to see that big ol' iconic sign up in the hills ... which I haven't even gotten close to yet!
Now if you're as lucky as we are (me and the head of CNN-IBN's features video journos, Sumit Sabharwal) and are here for the Grammys this weekend, you have to stop by the Staples Center and say hi!
We are going to be on the red carpet with the rest of the media looking to tackle the stars that don't chat with us (I'm kidding, I'm kidding! But be sure to watch specia l behind-the-scenes coverage). If I survive that melee, believe it or not, thanks to the good folks at VHI 1, and the extraordinary Richard at Alfred Haber (who has several licensees across the world), I get to go to the actual awards. And then Sumit and I get to shoot some of the after-party - it's all too exciting. Not to mention the fact, kids that I feel like the universe is making up to me for me never winning all these cool contests, or going to real, proper concerts.
No such worries this weekend -- it's not for nothing they call it "music's biggest night" (trademarked). There's reams of performers from the old-school/bordering-on-legendary -- Barbra Streisand to Mick Jagger to Bob Dylan - to the decidedly contemporary - Eminem, Lady Gaga, Rihanna, Katie Perry, B.O.B - and presenters, not to mention the NextGen - Justin Bieber and Jaden Smith, anyone?
But the glitz and glamour we're expecting aside, there's still something awe-inspiring about the Grammys, isn't there? They've held on to some of that old magic... though reports suggest it's been a slump over the past few years, and that they're looking to reinvigorate. There are obviously some logisitical issues, but we're talking hundreds of crews (and that's media alone!)
We will clearly give you the low-down, right here, and also on twitter - tweet me your q's @amritat and I'll put the best ones to whoever I meet.
HIGHLIGHTS DAY ONE
Before I call it a night cinderella-style, our highlights - touched down yesterday morning, hit the Convention Center right next to Staples Center (where the awards will be held), got a sense of where to shoot, by dashing down Hollywood Boulevard, then up to Griffith Park Observatory (with a breath-taking view of the city! All lit up at night, and I'm told on a clear day, you can see all the way to the ocean).
At night, we shot with a multiple-Grammy winning artist Kevin Brandon (aka "Brandino") at this cool whisky bar Seven Grand - Brandino's up for his seventh Grammy, for work on an album done with Robby Krieger (of The Doors)...and has worked with artists like Justin Timberlake, Mary J Blige, Outkast - and these are just the young 'uns. Trust me, you'll enjoy the music - everyone was kind enough to let us shoot. Also met some interesting characters and lovely people at said bar... watch story, and leave your comments please.
Coming soon, wait for it! The Jay Sean interview... as his latest single races up the US top 10 charts.
(Catch the Grammys LIVE at 6:30 am only on Vh1. You can catch the repeat at 9 pm on the same day. For more Grammy updates, log onto www.facebook.com/vh1india.com)