and as for myself
I see the time running when playing through grip but I don't hear anything.
Realplayer shows vid, no sound.
CD cable connected, grip has volume up full.
kernel-2.6.0-test6 finds the nforce2 i8x0 audio, lspci has the asound info, esd loads because since I put the oss emulation in kernel alsa opts there is now a /dev/snd/pcmD0D0p for playback.
I set /tmp/.esd ownership so the user myself can read and write.
Something says it can't find host unix sometimes, which would be /tmp/.esd/socket