Robert Hanashiro, USA Today

How Are the Trophies Awarded at the GRAMMYs Actually Made?

By Joe Hyer

February 11, 2017

They take 15 hours to make. They are the only major entertainment award trophies that are still poured by hand. Oh, and they’re made in a small town whose population is just 945 people. They are the trophies that will be awarded during Sunday’s GRAMMY Awards.

Craftsman John Billings, who resides Ridgeway, Colorado and is known simply as the “Grammy Man," has been designing the trophies for Music's Biggest Night for more than 30 years.

The 72-year-old craftsman is responsible for the creation of 600 GRAMMY trophies from his rural workshop each year.How are the statues made? Billings won’t spill too many of his secrets, but he says that each trophy is made of a mixture of zinc, aluminum, and some secret trace elements. He calls the secret combination “grammium.”

Billings spoke about the important promise he made the trophy’s first craftsman, and he shared some insight on the creation process when CBS Morning News visited his studio in the video below.

The 2017 GRAMMY Awards will be broadcast live from the Staples Center in Los Angeles on Sunday, Feb. 12 on CBS.