John Prine wins two posthumous Grammy Awards

John Prine poses with a guitar strapped around his neck.
John Prine
(John Chiasson)

John Prine has earned two posthumous Grammy Awards for his song “I Remember Everything.” The legendary singer and songwriter, who died April 7, 2020, of COVID-19, won in the American roots performance and American roots song categories for his bittersweet love letter to life.

An emotional Fiona Whelan Prine, his wife of more than 30 years, accepted the award from her home in Nashville. Surrounded by her family, she thanked Prine’s fans and longtime team for their devotion.

Prine, 73, earned 13 nominations in his lifetime.

Live updates of the 2021 Grammy Awards winners list: 83 categories including album, song, record and best new artist.

Best known for classic Americana songs including “Angel From Montgomery,” “In Spite of Ourselves” and “Sam Stone,” Prine visited the winner’s podium on three occasions during his lifetime: In 1991, his album “The Missing Years” landed a contemporary folk album award; in 2005, “Fair and Square” won the same award; and last year, a few months before his death, Prine was given a lifetime achievement award at the ceremony.

After his death, songwriters lined up to praise Prine’s work. “John Prine was one of the greatest artists of my life. Knowing him was a blessing,” said Kris Kristofferson.


Songwriter Bobby Bare called Prine “probably my favorite singer because of his phrasing and delivery — no matter what he did, I loved it. I’ve never heard anything by John Prine that I did not like.”

Those writers were drawn to a lyricist whose final release was an ode to a life well-lived:

I remember everything
Things I can’t forget
The way you turned and smiled on me
On the night that we first met
And I remember every night
Your ocean eyes of blue
How I miss you in the morning light
Like roses miss the dew.

Prine’s work will likely be further celebrated during Sunday’s “In Memoriam” segment, which is slated to honor the musicians and industry workers who died in 2020.

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