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Who are the Minnesota Grammy nominees? Mint Condition, Okee Dokees, Prince round out list

Mint Condition's Stokley Williams/ BET photo

Mint Condition's Stokley Williams/ BET photo

The Grammys showed Minnesota a little love. Just a little.

When the nominations for the 59th annual Grammy Awards were announced Tuesday morning, Mint Condition ended up as a finalist for best R&B album for “Healing Season,” a holiday album. This is the longtime Twin Cities R&B band’s first Grammy nomination, though lead singer Stokley Williams received two R&B noms in 2012 for “Not My Daddy,” a collaboration with singer Kelly Price.

The Okee Dokee Brothers, the Twin Cities duo that makes music for kids of all ages, earned its third nomination for best children’s album, for “Saddle Up.” That makes it three for three for them in Grammy noms for three consecutive albums. Joe Mailander and Justin Lansing took home the trophy in 2013 for “Can You Canoe?” “Saddle Up” was based on the duo’s horseback-riding trip across the Continental Divide.

'It's always a surprise that we get nominated but it's welcome news," Mailander said Tuesday. "We put a lot into this record, researching the genre of Western music and riding in the Continental Divide. We have a strong connection to Colorado [where both musicians grew up]. This is a special record for us. We think it's our  best work."

Prince received a posthumous nod for best engineered album nonclassical for “Hit N Run Phase Two.” He shares the nom with a cast that includes Booker T., Dylan Dresdow, Chris James and Justin Stanley.

Other artists with Minnesota connections received nominations, as well.

King, a new trio featuring Minneapolis-reared twin sisters Paris and Amber Strother, is competing for best urban contemporary album for “We Are King.” The Strothers moved to Los Angeles a few years ago.

Bon Iver’s “22. A Million,” which was released on the last day of Grammy eligibility on Sept. 30, is vying for best recording package. Bon Iver, a band fronted by Eau Claire’s Justin Vernon, won for best new artist in 2012. Technically, this new prize would go to designer Eric Timothy Carlson, a former Minneapolis artist who also has designed album covers for Twin Cities acts Doomtree, P.O.S. and Polica, among others.

Many Twin Cities musicians, including Michael Lewis, Ryan Olson and Andrew Broder, played on the new Bon Iver album.

See Rev. Jim and 'Breaking Bad' favorite in Minnesota film for Netflix

 

 

Laura Fraser

As films shot in Minnesota go, "I Am Not a Serial Killer" is not nearly as high-profile as "Grumpy Old Men" or "Fargo." But that doesn't mean the horror-thriller, being released for streaming only on Netflix Dec. 13, should be overlooked.

There was a little buzz when the movie started filming in the Iron Range region in February 2015, in part because it was based on Dan Wells' well-received 2009 novel about a crime-fighting teenager, but also because it meant local sightings of Christopher Lloyd, an actor beloved for his roles in "Back to the Future" and "Taxi."

But the film, which premiered at the South By Southwest Festival this past March, appears to have some other draws. Based solely on the trailer, director Billy O'Brien took full advantage of the Virginia/Hibbing location shoot, capturing everything from small-town main streets to snow-covered woods. There's also the sight of a grown-up Max Records, who got his big break as the lead in "Where the Wild Things Are."

But the most eye-popping attraction is the presence of a very familiar looking actress named Laura Fraser. Where have we seen that face before?

Hey! It's Lydia, one of Walter White's most intriguing nemeses from "Breaking Bad."

Check her -- and the film out -- next week over a cup of tea. Just be careful what you put in it...

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