HitFix Interview: The Band Perry at Grammy rehearsal on Nicki Minaj and more

It”s been quite the year for The Band Perry, who are up for Best New Artist on Sunday night at the 54th annual Grammy Awards. Over the last 12 months, the group has scored two No. 1 country hits, and seen the trio”s breakthrough hit, “If I Die Young” sweep last fall”s Country Music Assn. Awards.

The brother/sister act, composed of Kimberly, Reid and Neil Perry, have dreamt of coming to the Grammys their whole lives and now find themselves sitting on the second row Sunday night. “We”re not leaving until we meet Paul McCartney and Bruce Springsteen,” said Kimberly on Friday, right after the band”s rehearsal with Glen Campbell.

“It”s so surreal. We just keep having pinch me moments,” said Perry of performing with Campbell, who is receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Grammys this year. “He”s such a dear soul. He loves his music he loves his guitar.”

Even since being diagnosed with Alzheimer”s Disease earlier this year, Campbell has continued to perform, sometimes with more agility and focus than others, but Perry says  she and her brothers Reid and Neil are prepared for whatever happens on stage. “It”s kind of like if one of use needs to jump in” during a song. They will be joined by Blake Shelton on Sunday.

Though the Perry siblings weren”t born for Campbell”s heyday, their parents were and are huge Campbell fans who raised their kids on his music.  When asked how their parents reacted to seeing their kids play with Campbell, Kimberly said that at the first rehearsal, she didn”t know where her parents had gone. “They were in the hallway, bawling their eyes out. They were watching one of their heroes and their kids play together.” 

The band, who flew right out from rehearsal for Friday and Saturday night shows with Brad Paisley, were unsure of their chances to win Best New Artist. “We don”t have our hopes up yet,” Neil said. “It”s a lot of great artists.”

Plus, having scoped out the seating situation, Kimberly wondered if it was significant that Nicki Minaj”s seat was closer to the stage than hers. The Band Perry is up against Minaj, Skrillex, Bon Iver and J. Cole.  Regardless, she knew she would have a good time. “I”m sitting beside Jay-Z!,” she exclaimed. “We love him.”