Fake It 'Til You Make It: The Grammys
Ah, the Grammys, the oft forgotten stepchild of awards season where people who aren’t Jennifer Lawrence win awards. The actors of Hollywood give their speeches a rest for the week and let the musicians have the night. That night is this Sunday.
The Grammys are always so random. The most random fashion (JLo’s Versace), the most random performances (remember CeeLo in the bird costume?!) and the most random nominees (Sara Bareilles over Justin Timberlake for Album of the Year). That’s actually what makes the Grammys interesting; it’s a little more unpredictable than the rest of the awards shows.
At some point this week, you will have a discussion with an impassioned Macklemore fan or someone like me who doesn’t understand why Lorde wasn’t nominated for Best New Artist. Or maybe you are going to a Grammy viewing party… people will use any excuse to drink champagne and snark about people’s dresses and vocal performances. Here are 8 quips and truths to drop while watching music’s biggest night with even the biggest music fan.
Pretty crazy that Sara Bareilles and Katy Perry are nominated for essentially the same song for Best Pop Vocal Performance.
I’m not looking to stir up old bad blood but I mean, “Brave” and “Roar” are both… the same. And don’t get me wrong, I love both of them! Immensely. These songs get me through the last five minutes of my workout in the morning. But it was almost like the Grammy folks were like “Let’s pit these two songs up against each other and pick the version that we think is better and that will be the definitive song about bravery and standing up for yourself”.
I want Ed Sheeran to win Best New Artist… but I kind of don’t because of the curse!
The curse of Best New Artist is terrible. Lots of very successful artists have won the award (Mariah Carey, Sheryl Crow… THE BEATLES), but a lot of artists that win this award have careers that just fade away. I mean, when was the last time you heard a new Christopher Cross song? It explains why loads of Lorde fans are relieved that the New Zealand teen didn’t get nominated in this category. Many critics and musicians attribute this to the pressure and expectations brought on by the label of BEST NEW ARTIST. Others say it is because the artist then gets compared to past winners. Let’s be real, as a newer musician, can you really handle the pressure of being mentioned in the same breath as The Beatles?
I don’t know if I’m more excited about seeing Beyonce and Jay-Z together or Paul and Ringo!
You can expect the Grammys to be a bit Beatles heavy (yay!). 2014 marks the 49th anniversary of the four boys from Liverpool winning that Best New Artist Grammy and the 50th Anniversary of their debut in front of screaming teen girls on The Ed Sullivan Show. Speaking of squealing, get ready because it is time for some Carter family action! (Sqqueee!!) Jay and Queen Bey take the stage for the show, hopefully together.
Sometimes I have to separate NCIS: Los Angeles LL Cool J from Def Jam Records LL Cool J.
The actor/hip-hop star is slated to host The Grammys again this year. Probably to make sure we keep tuning in to his CBS show with other ’90s heartthrob Chris O’Donnell. But what music fans have to remember is that LL Cool J is Old. School. In 1984, when he was just 16, he made a record, “I Need A Beat” with producer Rick Rubin in Rubin’s dorm room at NYU. At that point, Def Jam Records was just an idea that Russell Simmons was helping Rubin get off the ground. LL Cool J’s album was the first release for Def Jam and helped the label eventually sign Public Enemy.
It’s always fun to see Rick Rubin get up with all the hip-hop artists since he looks like he should be in the Grateful Dead.
Rick Rubin is the straggly bearded older gentleman that you will see on Sunday night accepting award after award for Jay-Z’s Magna Carta Holy Grail album no doubt. He looks like he’s a member of the Robertson family. But he’s far from any of that. He is the co-founder of Def Jam Records and one of the main reasons that hip-hop is so popular today. But not only that, he’s worked with bands from The Red Hot Chili Peppers to The Dixie Chicks, Adele to Eminem. Not only does he look a bit like God, the man’s a music god and has probably produced more than one of your favorite albums.
I’d be surprised if Macklemore and Kendrick Lamar don’t take turns winning all night.
The two newcomers are pitted against each other in four categories included the hotly contested Best New Artist and Album of the Year categories. It’s weird because it doesn’t feel like either of them are new artists, but technically, they are. In addition to those four, Macklemore is nominated three more times as well. Of course, Jay-Z is in most of those categories too, so don’t discount Mr. Carter just yet.
Every year the Grammys try to prove rock isn’t dead.
This year they are doing it with the pairing of rock legend/Fleetwood Mac guitarist Lindsey Buckingham and Nine Inch Nails with an appearance by The Foo Fighters. Here’s the thing, the “rock is dead” argument is old. Rock is dead, but it isn’t. The spirit of rock will never die. Because rock is about using music to come alive and to say what you really feel! In that respect, rock is alive and well. Just listen to some of the nominees this year. But rock as we knew it, as your mom and dad knew it…that’s over. And it should be, we should move to different things. We should let rock evolve the way that it always has….without the evolution, there wouldn’t have been rock and roll in the first place!
I feel bad for Imagine Dragons, they had a great year, but I don’t think they’ll win.
It’s a pretty competitive year in just about every category. I feel like there is no sure-fire winner in any category except for Best Alternative Music Album, Vampire Weekend has it wrapped up. But poor Imagine Dragons in two categories with new superstars like Lorde and classic powerhouses like Led Zeppelin. If they pull out a win, it will be shocking, but well deserved.
FOR MORE INFO
For all your Grammys news and updates check out:
Grammy website – clearly
MTV – Special coverage