Grammy Award for Best Rock Instrumental Performance

The Grammy Award for Best Rock Instrumental Performance was an honor presented to recording artists for quality instrumental rock performances at the Grammy Awards, a ceremony that was established in 1958 and originally called the Gramophone Awards. Honors in several categories are presented at the ceremony annually by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences of the United States to "honor artistic achievement, technical proficiency and overall excellence in the recording industry, without regard to album sales or chart position".

The award was first presented at the 22nd Grammy Awards in 1980 to Paul McCartney and the band Wings for "Rockestra Theme". From 1986 to 1989, the category was known as Best Rock Instrumental Performance (Orchestra, Group or Soloist). According to the category description guide for the 52nd Grammy Awards, the award is presented to artists "for newly recorded rock, hard rock or metal instrumental performances".

As of 2011, Jeff Beck holds the records for the most wins, with six. Sting has received three awards, twice as a member of The Police—although he had no part in the band's "Behind My Camel", the 1982 award winner which he did not write and refused to play on.

Two-time recipients include Eric Clapton, Carlos Santana (once as a member of the band Santana), The Flaming Lips, Steve Vai, and brothers Jimmie Vaughan and Stevie Ray Vaughan (each once as part of the duo Vaughan Brothers). At the 51st Grammy Awards (2009), the tribute act Zappa Plays Zappa (led by Dweezil Zappa, son of Frank Zappa) earned an award for their performance of Frank's instrumental song "Peaches en Regalia". Dweezil and Frank have both received multiple nominations and even competed against one another in 1988. Joe Satriani holds the record for the most nominations (as well as the record for the most nominations without a win), with fourteen.

The award was discontinued before the 2012 awards due to a major overhaul of Grammy categories. All instrumental performances in the rock category were shifted to either the newly formed Best Rock Performance or Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance categories.


A man in the forefront is playing an acoustic guitar and singing into a microphone stand; a woman is behind microphone stand in the background.
Paul McCartney with fellow Wings member Linda McCartney in 1976
A man in a white shirt standing behind a microphone stand and holding a guitar
Three-time award recipient Sting (twice as a member of The Police) performing in 2007
Five men performing on a stage; two are standing behind microphone stands and holding guitars, one is holding a microphone, one is standing behind a keyboard set, and the one furthest back on the stage is sitting behind a drum kit. Lights shine down from above, illuminating a multi-colored stage with geometric shapes.
Members of the 1985 award-winning band Yes performing in 1977
A man wearing a sleeveless white shirt holding a white guitar
Six-time award winner Jeff Beck performing in Sydney, Australia in 2009
Black and white image of a man with shoulder-length hair and facial hair.
1988 award recipient Frank Zappa in 1977
A man wearing a green shirt and hat, looking down and playing a guitar.
Two-time award winner Carlos Santana (once as the leader of the band Santana) performing in 2000
Head shot of a man wearing a brown-striped shirt
Eric Johnson, 1992 award winner, in 2007
A man wearing black clothing and a chain necklace, holding an electric guitar
Two-time award winner Steve Vai in 2005
A man on a stage wearing blue jeans, a black shirt and eyeglasses. He is holding a black guitar, and part of a drum set and other audio and stage equipment can be seen in the background.
Two-time award recipient Eric Clapton performing in 2008
A man standing behind a microphone stand; a blue light is shining on him and a colorful, picturesque effect appears in the background.
Wayne Coyne of the two-time award-winning band The Flaming Lips performing in 2004
Black and white image of a man behind a microphone stand holding a guitar; in the background is a man at a piano
2006 award winner Les Paul in 2008
A man in dark clothing standing on a stage while holding a guitar in front of a crowd. Behind him is a man with his arm raised, holding a drum stick and sitting behind a drum set.
2008 award winner Bruce Springsteen performing in 2008

^[I] Each year is linked to the article about the Grammy Awards held that year.
^[II] Vaughan Brothers consists of Jimmie and Stevie Ray Vaughan.

See also



  • "Grammy Award Winners". National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. Archived from the original on January 18, 2010. Retrieved December 19, 2010. Note: User must select the "Rock" category as the genre under the search feature.
  • "Grammy Awards: Best Rock Instrumental Performance". Rock on the Net. Retrieved December 19, 2010.


External links

Uses material from the Wikipedia article Grammy Award for Best Rock Instrumental Performance, released under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license.