Big Apple Personalities To 'Host' Grammys

Sunday's (Feb. 23) 45th annual Grammy Awards ceremony in New York will not feature a traditional celebrity host as in past years. Instead, the event will feature a gaggle of Gotham-associated personal

Sunday's (Feb. 23) 45th annual Grammy Awards ceremony in New York will not feature a traditional celebrity host as in past years. Instead, the event will feature a gaggle of Gotham-associated personalities introducing performers and special segments, including Latin music star Marc Anthony, "60 Minutes" principal Ed Bradley, and actor/comedian Robin Williams.

"In light of our return to the city," Recording Academy president Neil Portnow said in a statement, "we wanted to do something unique both to acknowledge New York's prominent status in the music world, and to celebrate the legendary heart, soul, and spirit of the people who live here."

Other celebrities with ties to New York who are confirmed to appear are rapper-turned-actress Queen Latifah, "Late Night With David Letterman" bandleader Paul Schaffer, and actress Jamie-Lynn Sigler of HBO's "The Sopranos." Additional personalities will be announced in the days leading up to the ceremony.

The Grammys will also feature a host of newly confirmed celebrity presenters, including Aretha Franklin, Peter Gabriel, Herbie Hancock, and Rod Stewart. Others who will hand out statuettes include actor Harvey Firestein, Alicia Keys, Train's Pat Monahan, B.B. King, Raphael Saadiq, Bonnie Raitt, and 'N Sync's Justin Timberlake. As previously reported, 'N Sync will also perform as part of the presentation of the Special Merit Award to the surviving members of the Bee Gees.

The planned three-and-a-half hour Grammy Awards ceremony will take place at New York's Madison Square Garden. The event will be broadcast live on CBS beginning at 8 p.m. ET. For a look at the artists up for some of the top awards, visit Billboard.com's 2003 Grammy Preview.