Blue Note Records received the President's Merit Award from the Recording Academy on Tuesday night, in recognition of the jazz label's 70th anniversary.

In that time, Blue Note artists have ranged from Thelonious Monk to John Coltrane to Anita Baker to Norah Jones. "Blue Note records always had an extra polish, a sheen that set them apart," said Recording Academy President/CEO Neil Portnow.

Blue Note was honored as part of the 2009 Grammy Salute to Jazz at the Club Nokia in Los Angeles, and included performances by Herbie Hancock, Cassandra Wilson, Terence Blanchard and Joe Lovano, as well as the Grammy Jazz Ensembles, which are made up of 30 high school musicians from around the country.

Blue Note President Bruce Lundvall spoke of his love for the genre, and remembered buying albums from the label as a child in New York. "It was the label you could trust," he said. "You'd be grabbing for your wallet without having to hear a note."

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