New Grammys Museum Breaks Ground Next Month, Eyes 2015 Opening

Projected construction costs between $12 million and $15 million

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Kyle McGovern WRITTEN BY
Kyle McGovern

One museum isn't enough for the Grammys, apparently. As Billboard reports, a second Grammy Museum will open in Cleveland, Mississippi, near Delta State University, in May 2015. The project is expected to break ground within a month.

A four-acre plot of land has been secured and a 99-year (!!) lease has already been signed. Construction of the 20,000-square-foot building is budgeted between $12 million and $15 million. Citizens of Cleveland and Bolivar County have so far raised more than $4.5 million in funding, while the state of Mississippi has appropriated $3 million and pledged an additional $3 million. Organizers are hoping to generate another $5 million in private sector donations.

This second Grammy Museum — the first is located in Los Angeles — will focus on Mississippi's musical heritage, specifically country and blues, and feature some exhibits and programs from the L.A. museum.

Bob Santelli, the Grammy Museum's executive director, also wants to maintain a close relationship with the Delta Music Institute, an independent arm of Delta State's College of Arts & Sciences. The Institute offers educational programs built around the music industry, and also boasts a sound recording technology program.

“We wanted to make sure its integrated into the college experience,” he told Billboard. “Rural Mississippi is not downtown Los Angeles, so it’s not as much a tourist attraction. We will extend and broaden our reach with an address in the South and I’m certain that gve-and-take will be a two-way street.”

As such, the Grammy Museum will host an exchange program for students of Delta State as well as colleges and universities in the L.A. area. The L.A. site will manage curation, public programs, and hiring. Billboard reports that the original museum, the Recording Academy, and AEG (which owns the Grammy Museum property) will not invest in this new location.

Lucy Janoush, president of the Cleveland Music Foundation (the non-profit that signed the Miss. museum's lease), and project consultant Allan Hammons said they will market the new Grammy Museum to people in the Arkansas-Mississippi-Memphis region. They also estimate that tourist traffic — based on the 30,000 to 40,000 people the B.B. King Museum in Indianola, Miss. attracts — could be as high as 100,000 visitors in the first year.

Artist renderings of the forthcoming Grammy Museum were unveiled at the Celebration of Mississippi showcase held at the L.A. museum on Thursday, February 7. The event also included a live performance by the North Mississippi Allstars.

The 55th Annual Grammy Awards air live on CBS on February 10 at 8 p.m. EST. LL Cool J will host the ceremony, which broadcasts from the Staples Center in L.A. To make sure you're primed for the telecast (and able to impress your friends with your well-rounded knowledge), be sure to check out our extensive Grammys 2013 coverage:

Grammys 2013 FAQ: Everything You Need to Know About Music's Biggest Night
Grammys 2013: Who Should Win the Big Categories
Grammys 2013: Who Should Win the Categories You Actually Care About
Tweet the Grammys With SPIN, Win a Prize!
Award Tour: 22 Times The Grammys Saluted The Underground

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