We're always fans of mainstream acceptance of our engaging hobby, whether it's in law, at film shows, or in decades-old industry awards ceremonies. The latter, in this case, is thanks to a new development by the Recording Academy to change the names of four categories in the many that are eligible to received Grammys each year. What used to be called the "Film, Television, and Other Visual Media" is now formally known as the "Motion Picture, Television, Video Games or Other Visual Media" Field. And with just a few changed words, the minds of judges and onlookers alike were a little more receptive to gaming as a venue for some pretty incredible experiences!
This change may be inspired by a general shift in opinion, but we might also have Christopher Tin to thank. He's the principal composer of a little piece of music called "Baba Yetu," or the theme to Civilization IV. Because the album containing his work didn't actually release until 2009, it beat out four other strong contenders and won 2011's Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s).
As a side note: while it's hard not to gush about how cool it is that our precious vidya made it to the Grammys this year, Christopher Tin's piece definitely stands on its own. Based on the Lord's Prayer in Swahili, it was already a fitting choice for a history-inspired game where Civs are just as likely to fight and bargain over religion as they are over resources or land. But anyone who's spent time on the menu screen of Civ IV can tell you about that swell of beauty when the sun crests over our little blue marble just as the climax of the song hits, brass and strings ablaze. An even more touching version is the centerpiece for the 'Video Games Live' concert, and can be experienced here.
The Independent article goes on to note that established movie composers such as Hans Zimmer have been doing more video game soundtracks recently, but, as some have noted, it's not quite as impressive when games win recognition based on hiring existing talent.
All that said, anyone have ideas for recent soundtracks that should be considered for the Grammys in 2012?