Tuesday, 15 February 2011



It is awards season and last night we had the Grammys. THE top music award show. Twitter, facebook, the news, blogs were ablaze with the news of Lady Gaga erupting from her "egg". I think we have lost the essence of the Grammys and what it means. All everyone ever focuses on are what the artists wore and what mad antics they got up too.

The Grammys are the equivalent of the Oscars to the music industry. At least with the Oscars, we pay as much attention to the actual awards as we do to the stars and their clothes. With Oscars, it's truly about participation as just to be a nominee is kudos enough, much less actually winning. With the Grammys, nobody pays attention to the winners or nominees anymore. Who can tell me what the nominees for (I'll make it an easy one)  best R&B vocals? Male or female? Or even any of the urban music category winners? Ok, song of the year? Record/album of the year? Yet - I bet we all know what Lady Gaga did! We've all had a comment about what Nicki Minaj wore - hate it or love it. 

Granted, the Grammys are over long with too many absurd categories now (2011 had 109 categories - many of which aren't shown on TV), and their cut-off date for eligibility means you get albums that you've forgotten about creeping into the fray with more recent/hip music. Plus let's face it, it's still a popularity contest, right? But really? Is that right? Record of the year was Lady Antebellum's "Need You Now". Really? That beat "Empire State of Mind"? Or B.O.B's "Nothing on You", Eminem & Rihanna's "Love the Way You Lie" or Cee Lo's "F*** you"? Those songs were all played to death across the globe! "Need You Now" not soo much. Album of the Year was The Surburbs by Arcade Fire. Granted I haven't heard it so can't comment on whether it's good or not. Probably because I've never heard of Arcade Fire. The Fame Monster though - yeah I have and it's pretty good. Katy Perry's Teenage Dream not soo much. Usher won a Grammy for "There Goes my Baby"? Really? Are you kidding me? Beating Kem and Jaheim? Even worse Raymond v Raymond won best R&B album? (Gagging all over the place at the memory of the assault of that tosh on my ears)

That being said, congratulations to Bruno Mars, Herbie Hancock with Pink, India Arie, Seal and the others (amazing song btw), Rihanna, Michael Buble, Them Crooked Vultures (will always love Dave Grohl and anything he does), Muse, Fantasia, Sade (the most deserving in my opinion), Cee Lo, John Legend & The Roots, Jay-Z & Swizzy (woo - on to the next one!), Keith Urban, Lady Antebellum (for the country performance. I don't agree with the record of the year win as I said before), Bebe & Cece Winans, Buju Banton, Ali Farka Toure, Julie Andrews, Jon Stewart, Danger Mouse (Producer of the year) - for winning in their various categories. Apologies for the others I didn't mention, I either don't like you or don't know you. 

Well done as well to the nominees that didn't win.  I'm most upset for John Mayer. Battle Studies was a brilliant album but only won one award and an obscure one at that for Best Engineered Album, despite being nominated countless times. 

Win or lose - I hope all the nominees enjoy their success and the  recognition of their efforts. There will hopefully be millions like me who may never have heard of some winners like Esperanza Spalding, but their shock wins will thrust them into the limelight and will generate more album or at least concert ticket sales. I shall be definitely be checking her and Arcade Fire out. That's how I discovered the Dave Matthews Band last year, and my life is much better for it. 

Hope you all discover some amazing music this week! 

P.S - Did you guys know they give out Grammys for Best Album Notes?? Hahaha - now that's one to aim for! 

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