It has been an incredible few weeks for Nicolay, one of two men who make up The Foreign Exchange. Earlier this month, he found out their song "Daykeeper" received a Grammy nomination for best urban-alternative performance. “It felt incredible, we at first couldn't believe it for the simple fact that we, it's taken a long road for us to get here,” said Nicolay. That road has been quite the journey. Nicolay moved to New Hanover County from Holland a few years ago as an independent producer, meaning no label and no financial backing. Now his music is being recognized as some of the best in the business. Nicolay added, “It's validation for everything, for the long hours of rehearsals, to never having any money, always being broke.” While a win would be huge, just being nominated could bring the group tons of exposure. “This just already means that we are allowed to put this in front of our names like, "Grammy nominated",” said Nicolay. “This just really opens up a lot more doors its kind of like getting a password, all of a sudden people respond to your emails - all of a sudden return your calls.” While Nicolay will be there on the red carpet, someone else will be watching from home, for a similar reason. UNCW music professor, Jerald Shynett, also has a stake in the Grammy Awards. He plays trombone in the band, Chuck Owen and the Jazz Surge. The band recorded a song that is up for Best Instrumental Arrangement. “We get together - create great art, sometimes reaches mainstream like now. But most often not, it doesn't get to the masses but that's ok, it's part of who we are as an artist,” Shynett said. The Grammy Awards air January 31st.
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