My Grammy notes, a week later:
The Grammys weren’t too bad this year, if you don’t mind Taylor Swift. The night scored tops in the ratings, and that was due to the volume of performances. This is fine, but it was really strange to have so few awards televised, especially in hearing all the references to pre-televised wins.
- In retrospect, had to know something was up when Song of the Year was awarded first, not something like “Female Pop Vocal of the Year”.
- More awards. It’s an awards show, please remember that.
- 3D was the worst idea ever, and even Rihanna and Beyoncé looked stupid dancing in their glasses.
- Michael Jackson’s poor children.
- The bleeping—or rather, the protracted silence of the censors—just made everyone think that something was wrong with the TV.
- Timing. Make sure those likely to win an award aren’t held up by costume changes or preparations for performance, and can actually accept the award.
- They need to stop dressing Taylor Swift in white. It’s ruining her image by overemphasizing it.
- While most of the chatter circulated on Taylor Swift failing to reach the high notes in “Rihannon”, it was odd not to note how strange it was to see Stevie Nicks singing “You Belong With Me”, because the song is so juvenile. It also proves that the song will not age well once T. Swift grows out of this demographic. I really like the arrangement on “You Belong With Me”, though.
- Sasha Fierce was very much out in full force. Surprisingly, Beyoncé did a medly of “If I Were a Boy” and the thematically fitting “You Oughta Know”, which worked perfectly with the tough soldier shtick she was working. The motif was very Rihanna, and reminded me very much of a recent podcast from the Slate Culture Gabfest discussing the decade in music. Beyoncé and Rihanna have both led the way in projecting female-driven and pop music into symbols of strength. They are fighters, kicking ass and taking names in their spike heels.
And of course, Lady Gaga and Elton John, which just needs to be seen again (sorry, no embed capabilities).
P.S. New York Magazine’s The Cut blog has a great roundup of Lady G’s costumes, seams and all.