54th Grammy Award Winners

It was only yesterday that I realized that I never actually wrote a post about the nominees (mostly due to the fact that I was on vacation when they were announced). Oh well, I’ll just post my comments that I would have in the previous post here, along with the winners.

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Winner: Adele, 21
Bruno Mars, Doo Wops and Hooligans
Foo Fighters, Wasting Light
Lady Gaga, Born This Way
Rihanna, Loud

I was awfully surprised at the inclusion of Rihanna’s album. Personally, I didn’t think much of it. I would much rather have had Lady Antebellum’s Own the Night or Jay-Z & Kanye West’s Watch the Throne been nominated instead of Rihanna and Lady Gaga but that’s just me. Regardless, Adele won and deservedly so. 21 was without a doubt THE BEST ALBUM of the year.

RECORD OF THE YEAR
Winner: Adele “Rolling in the Deep”
Bon Iver “Holocene”
Bruno Mars “Grenade”
Katy Perry “Firework”
Mumford and Sons “The Cave”

Adele won for the biggest song of the year, that was a given. But I was a little surprised that Katy Perry was nominated, especially when songs like Jason Aldean & Kelly Clarkson’s “Don’t You Wanna Stay”, Lady Antebellum’s “Just A Kiss” and Jay-Z & Kanye West’s “Otis” were around released in the past year.

SONG OF THE YEAR
Winner: Adele “Rolling in the Deep”
Kanye West ft. Rihanna, Fergie & Kid Cudi “All of the Lights”
Mumford and Sons “The Cave”
Bruno Mars “Grenade”
Bon Iver “Holocene”

Again, I don’t think it would have mattered who was nominated because no question, Adele was going to win…and she did.

BEST NEW ARTIST
Winner: Bon Iver
The Band Perry
J. Cole
Nicki Minaj
Skrillex

To me, this was a ‘meh’ group of artists nominated for this category. I mean this was really the best new artists of the past year? If he hadn’t won a Grammy last year, I’m sure Bruno Mars would’ve been nominated here (under the latest Grammy rule for the category) and won. Others who should have been nominated? Christina Perri, The Civil Wars, Jessie J…any or all 3 would’ve been great. Alas, Bon Iver ended up winning the award, a surprise to many but not much to me. Granted, I haven’t really listened to their music but unlike many others, I really didn’t think Nicki Minaj was going to win. If Drake couldn’t win last year, there was no way Nicki was going to.

BEST POP SOLO PERFORMANCE
Winner: Adele “Someone Like You”
Bruno Mars “Grenade”
Katy Perry “Firework”
Lady Gaga “You and I”
Pink “Fuckin’ Perfect”

For this year’s Grammys, the male and female performance categories were shrunk into one, which I actually don’t mind because over the years we’ve been getting nominees that weren’t quite pop. That being said, I guess there weren’t any real issues with the nominees. All the songs were some of the biggest pop songs of the year. I do think though that Jessie J’s “Price Tag” should’ve been in contention or (longshot) Matt Nathanson’s “Modern Love.” But like it mattered anyways because Adele won.

BEST POP DUO/GROUP PERFORMANCE
Winner: Tony Bennett & Amy Winehouse “Body and Soul”
The Black Keys “Dearest”
Coldplay “Paradise”
Foster the People “Pumped Up Kicks”
Maroon 5 & Christina Aguilera “Moves Like Jagger”

What I said before about nominees not quite being pop, totally applies here. I thought Black Keys were considered alternative and Coldplay are also nominated under rock, so there’s that. Would’ve liked to see The Script nominated for “For the First Time” but I was happy enough with Maroon 5’s nod. I was obviously pulling for M5 to win but there was no way you were gonna bet against Tony Bennett & Amy Winehouse.

BEST POP VOCAL ALBUM
Winner: Adele, 21
Bruno Mars, Doo-Wops and Hooligans
Cee Lo Green, The Lady Killer
Lady Gaga, Born This Way
Rihanna, Loud

No problems here except for maybe the fact that most of the Album of the Year nominees were from this category. Again, there was no betting against Adele.

BEST COUNTRY DUO/GROUP PERFORMANCE
Winner: The Civil Wars “Barton Hollow”
Jason Aldean & Kelly Clarkson “Don’t You Wanna Stay”
Kenny Chesney ft. Grace Potter “You and Tequila”
Thompson Square “Are You Gonna Kiss Me or Not”

I normally wouldn’t care about country all that much but Kelly Clarkson for her song with Jason Aldean was nominated! Unfortunately, they lost but they lost to The Civil Wars who were just as deserving of the award. My one surprise in this category was Lady Antebellum’s lack of a nomination for “Just A Kiss”.

BEST COUNTRY ALBUM
Winner: Lady Antebellum, Own the Night
Blake Shelton, Red River Blue
Eric Church, Chief
George Strait, Here for a Good Time
Jason Aldean, My Kinda Party
Taylor Swift, Speak Now

Didn’t really care about this category that much. I thought Taylor Swift was going to win, but I was so happy when Lady Antebellum won instead. I am totally in love with “Own the Night”, it’s just such a great album and totally deserved to win.

BEST RAP PERFORMANCE: Jay-Z & Kanye West “Otis” – Honestly, I’m just happy this song won.

BEST SCORE SOUNDTRACK: The King’s Speech – I get it, it was good. But when I re-read the nominations for this category and realized that the score for “The Social Network” wasn’t nominated, I was astonished. HOW? Reznor and Ross’s score was amazing, that’s why they won an Oscar for it.

As for the performances, Adele and Jennifer Hudson’s respective performances were spectacular. Taylor Swift has never sounded better live. Jason Aldean & Kelly Clarkson were great until there was a mic problem near the end of the song. The Beach Boys reunion, with assistance by Maroon 5 and Foster the People was cool. Foo Fighters continue to amaze me with their live performances (I’ve never really listened to them so they’re successfully converting me into a fan).

All in all, not a bad night for music.

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Grammy Awards 2010

It’s Grammy night! For any music fan, this is THE night. Granted some could care less about the Grammys, but with this music fan, I always look forward to the Grammys. Nothing gets between me and my Grammy watching. As I did with the Golden Globes post, I’ll be writing this post as I watch the show, so comments will be made in the order in which they occurred on the show. Any awards given out during the pre-telecast (that I have any comments on) will be posted first (it comes before the actual show, so makes sense no?)

Pre-Telecast Awards

  • Best Female Country Vocal Solo: Taylor Swift “White Horse” – I like Taylor Swift but best vocal? Not so much. Especially considering she was up against the likes of Carrie Underwood and Martina McBride
  • Best Country Song: Taylor Swift “White Horse” – Good for Taylor. I can get behind her winning here.
  • Best Dance Recording: Lady Gaga “Poker Face” – It’s too bad Britney couldn’t win here for Womanizer, but there was no doubt how big a song Poker Face was.
  • Best Rap Song: Jay-Z, Kanye West & Rihanna “Run This Town” – Well deserved, although Dead and Gone was equally deserving.
  • Best Rock Song & Best Rock Performance by a Duo/Group with Vocals: Kings of Leon “Use Somebody” – Definitely well deserved. Such a fantastic song.
  • Best Male Pop Vocal Solo Performance: Jason Mraz “Make It Mine” – Jason Mraz was the only one who, in all honesty, should have won this award, so I’m extremely happy to see him win. The other nominees in the category, although being great artists, are not really considered “pop.”
  • Best Pop Vocal Collaboration with Vocals: Jason Mraz & Colbie Caillat “Lucky” – Lucky is such a great song, so I’m really happy that they won. Also, it’s Colbie Caillat’s first Grammy award so it’s just a great win overall.
  • Best Pop Vocal Album: The Black Eyed Peas “The E.N.D.” – Kelly Clarkson should have won for All I Ever Wanted. Truthfully though, The E.N.D. is more of a dance album than pop. Meh I’m just disappointed that Kelly didn’t get nominated for more awards.

Actual Awards Show

  • Lady Gaga opens up the show with an All That Jazz-sampled intro, a medley of Poker Face & Speechless, the latter song being a duet with Elton John. Not a fan of Gaga, but that duet was kinda cool.
  • Stephen Colbert: “The Grammy awards, the highest honour that can be bestowed to an artist. Next to being covered by the kids of Glee.” LOL one of many lines by him. He should host something, or maybe I should just watch the Colbert Report more often ahaha
  • Song of The Year: Beyonce “Single Ladies” – This award is for songwriting, so I really think Kings of Leon should have won. But it’s alright, Single Ladies was quite the ubiquitous song of 2009; there’s no denying that.
  • Green Day & the cast of American Idiot performing 21 Guns. I definitely think this performance is making the song even more superb than it is. But then again, with the success of Glee, everything sounds better when sung as a group and on the verge of turning into a showtune. Still an awesome performance
  • Best Country Album: Taylor Swift “Fearless” – Obvious choice. Can’t deny how sweet/humble she is when accepting awards though.
  • Is it just me or is Simon Baker always here? Didn’t he present last year too? I mean, he’s not even a musician. He’s an actor.  Hmmm…
  • Beyonce commanding the full stage for her performance. If I Were A Boy gets a new, and dare I say better, arrangement. I really like the rockier edge given to the song. And a slight cover of You Oughta Know mixed in there? Interesting…I’m kind of suprised though that she left it at that. I was expecting more of a medley, breaking into Single Ladies or something.
  • Pink performs Glitter In The Air. Really incredible and cool performance. Not much else to say about it.
  • Best New Artist: Zac  Brown Band – Can’t comment much about them. I don’t really listen to them so can’t say much. Good for them I guess. I was disappointed in the nominations for this award to begin with, but I’m pretty sure it would’ve been either them or Keri Hilson anyways.
  • Black Eyed Peas performs Im’ma Be and I Gotta Feeling. The whole performance should have been just I Gotta Feeling, even though I was complete annoyed with the song during the summer becuase it was incredibly overplayed. Taboo looked kinda bored at one part. And I’m pretty sure those videos on the screen also included some other musicians (Timbaland? 50 Cent? I think so…)
  • another commercial break and I kind of want to see some more awards handed out? I mean it is called the Grammy Awards. I don’t want the whole show to be just awards being given out, but would it hurt to have a more balanced ratio?
  • Lady Antebellum performs Need You Now. Again, I’m not really well-versed in the country music scene. I know the names of the artists, but there are very few who I actually listen to. After this performance, I think I might have to give Lady Antebellum a full album listen now.
  • Best Comedy Album: Stephen Colbert “A Colbert Christmas” – Usually an award that gets awarded during the pre-telecast, so it seems kind of out of place during the actual show.
  • Record of the Year: Kings of Leon “Use Somebody” – ahaha “happy drunk” KOL. Awesome win! REALLY well-deserved.
  • Jamie Foxx & T-Pain performs Blame It. There was no doubt that that was T-Pain in the white wig lol. For a song that pretty much entirely auto-tuned, this performance wasn’t half bad. At the very least, it’s better than when it was performed on American Idol last year. That’s not saying much.
  • Justin Bieber has no right in being at the Grammys. He may be a fellow Canadian, but he needs to go away.
  • Best Rock Album: Green Day “21st Century Breakdown”
  • CBS really is pimping out all their shows huh?
  • Zac Brown Band performs with Leon Russell
  • Taylor Swift up next, starting with her new song Today Was A Fairytale, from the upcoming movie “Valentine’s Day.” Short and sweet, because we gotta get to Stevie Nicks joining Taylor on stage. And I’m sorry to say, but this performance is kind of making my point that she’s not the greatest vocalist. *See pre-telecast awards comments above*
  • Michael Jackson Tribute…in 3D! Celine Dion, Jennifer Hudson, Smokey Robinson, Carrie Underwood and Usher are performing. Followed by MJ’s kids receiving his Lifetime Achievement Award on his behalf.
  • Bon Jovi performing for the first time at the Grammys. Seriously? In their entire music career, they’ve never performed on the Grammys? Wow. They start off with their latest hit We Weren’t Born to Follow and go into Who Says You Can’t Go Home, a duet with Jennifer Nettles of Sugarland. And then for the fan voted song, it’s Livin’ On A Prayer! Classic Bon Jovi. Although I partially wanted It’s My Life for one reason only: the fact that it now reminds me of Glee and that awesome mash-up lol.
  • Best Rap/Sung Collaboration: Jay-Z, Kanye West & Rihanna “Run This Town” – I guess they deserved it, especially Rihanna after the year she’s had. And Kanye couldn’t really lose, he was nominated 3 times in the category. But again, I still think T.I. & Justin should have won for Dead and Gone. It’s just a really good song, regardless of the fact that Justin’s a part of it.  Although it would’ve been HILARIOUS if I’m On A Boat won. And last thing, who’s kid was that? Too cute!
  • Mary J. Blige & Andrea Boccelli perform a new version of Bridge Over Troubled Water for Haiti. Amazing.
  • Dave Matthews Band performs, introduced by Adam Sandler.
  • Ricky Martin? But yay Lea Michele!!
  • Best Female Pop Vocal Performance: Beyonce “Halo” – I wonder what would’ve happened if Kelly Clarkson was nominated in this category for Already Gone? Would the votes cancel out due to their slight likeness? Or would Kelly have come out victorious? We will never know. Sidenote, I totally just realized how awesome/funny it is that Lea got to give that award to Beyonce, considering the Halo/Walking on Sunshine mash-up on Glee. hehe.
  • Maxwell performs Pretty Wings. Great song. He is then joined onstage by Roberta Flack.
  • Les Paul tribute featuring Jeff Beck. I would like to know who that girl singing was though. She was kinda awesome.
  • Quentin Tarentino can be the funniest dude sometimes.
  • Drake, Lil Wayne & Eminem performs Forever. Travis Barker on drums. The only thing I don’t like? The fact that there is so much censoring on this song. Total, I think a good 30 seconds to a minute of the song was censored. I can’t enjoy the song when I know the sound gets cut out.
  • Album of the Year: Taylor Swift “Fearless” – Good for her. I absolutely love how Colbie got a mention, and that on the screen where it says the winner, it was written as Taylor Swift & Colbie Caillat. Love.

Well, at the end of it all, no surprise, Beyonce and Taylor Swift were the big winners. Beyonce had the most wins with 6. Taylor Swift won 4 including obviously, the big one. Kings of Leon right behind with 3 awards. Overall, it was a slightly uneventful show. We had some great performances, and some not so great. Here’s to hoping that 2010 will be chock full of great music options so we can get a better show in 2011.

52nd Annual Grammy Award Nominations

The Grammys never cease to amaze me in their nominations. Sometimes the nominations are great, sometimes not so great. So with that being said, let’s talk about some of the nominations

  • Record of the Year: Beyonce, BEP, Kings of Leon, Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift. One of the many categories that are quite hard to gage as to who will win come January. All the songs nominated (Halo, I Gotta Feeling, Use Somebody, Poker Face, and You Belong With Me, respectively) were huge hits this past year. I think ultimately though, it will come down to Beyonce and Taylor Swift.
  • Album of the Year: Quite surprisingly, all the albums nominated are by current mainstream artists. It was expected that Allen Toussaint would get the “honorary” nomination but instead we saw the Dave Matthews Band being nominated. Again, it will mostly come down to a battle between Beyonce and Taylor Swift.
  • Song of the Year: I would absolutely love it if Kings of Leon won for Use Somebody here. It’s such a great song. Despite the fact that Beyonce and Taylor are both nominated here as well, I say Beyonce has the better chance at winning for Single Ladies here, based solely upon the fact that it became such a phenomenon.
  • Best New Artist: I hate to say it but this year’s nominees are kind of weak. I mean are these really the best representation of new artists from the past year? The Keri Hilson and Zac Brown Band nominations were obvious. The other 3 nominations…not so much. I mean I guess we should give kudos to The Recording Academy for recognizing acts like Silversun Pickups, MGMT and the Ting Tings. But there were a lot of other new acts that would have been a better representation of 2009. Diane Birch should have been nominated. Drake should have been nominated. Definitely looks like my prediction streak for this category is going down.
  • Best Female Pop Vocal Performance: I have an issue with this category. Where’s Kelly Clarkson’s nomination for My Life Would Suck Without You?! Like c’mon seriously? Or even better yet, she should have been nominated for Already Gone, but then I guess with Beyonce’s nomination for Halo, they didn’t wanna draw comparisons.
  • Best Male Pop Vocal Performance: By default, I think Jason Mraz is gonna win in this category because he’s the only one nominated who actually belongs in the pop category. John Legend, Maxwell, Seal, and to an extent Stevie Wonder, should really all be under the R&B category. But seriously, was it that weak of a year for the men of pop?
  • Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals: Once again, the Grammy’s ambiguous definition of pop is at play here. But hands down, the Black Eyed Peas are winning for I Gotta Feeling.
  • Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals: I am both excited and afraid for this category. I am excited for the nominations for Ciara & Justin Timberlake (Love Sex Magic), Jason Mraz & Colbie Caillat (Lucky), and Taylor Swift & Colbie Caillat (Breathe). But seeing as though Rosanne Cash & Bruce Springsteen and Willie Nelson & Norah Jones are nominated, I have an uneasy feeling that one of those 2 collaborations will win over the other ones. I mean after Plant & Krauss won the past 2 years, anything can happen.
  • Best Pop Vocal Album: YAY to Colbie Caillat and Kelly Clarkson being nominated here! As much as I love the Black Eyed Peas, I didn’t LOVE The E.N.D. Kelly’s All I Ever Wanted needs to win.
  • Best Dance Recording: OMG all songs that I actually know! lol. For once, no favouritism towards the only song I know…oh who am I kidding? I want Britney to win for Womanizer. Although chances are its gonna go to BEP for Boom Boom Pow.
  • Best Rap/Sung Collaboration: Obviously I want T.I & Justin to win for Dead and Gone. But they face some heavy competition in Jay-Z, Rihanna & Kanye West for Run This Town, Keri Hilson, Kanye & Ne-Yo for Knock You Down and….The Lonely Island & T-Pain for I’m On A Boat?
  • Best Song Written for Motion Picture, Television: Jai Ho wins, hands down!

So at the end of it all, Beyonce is nominated for 10 awards and Taylor Swift is nominated for 8. January 31st, 2010 should be an interesting night.

Award Weekend: Creative Arts Emmys & MTV VMA 2009

A little bit late here with my take on this weekend’s awards shows.

First, on Saturday, was the Creative Arts Emmys. The Primetime Emmys are this coming Sunday, but of course they couldn’t air everything so they have a different ceremony for the creative awards. The ceremony has yet to air (that will take place on Friday on E! I believe), but I just wanna simply discuss some of the winners.

  • Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series: Justin Timberlake won this for his stint as a guest host on SNL! Huge JT fan here so I was so excited to hear he won! Seriously, every time Justin hosts SNL or even when he just randomly shows up, it is MUST SEE TV. He totally deserved the award. Now let’s see if he can win on Sunday for Outstanding Music & Lyrics (i think that’s what the category is called?)
  • Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series: Tina Fey! SNL was soo on point last season, especially during election season. We all know that Tina Fey was so awesome and hilarious for her impersonation of Sarah Palin. I think it was pretty much a given that she’d win. It really would’ve been wrong if she didn’t!
  • Outstanding Choreography: It was a tie between Rob Ashford (for the “Musicals are Back!” number at the Oscars) and Tyce Diorio (for his Adam and Eve piece on S4 of SYTYCD). I love SYTYCD but out of the 4 routines nominated from the show, I kinda wish it was NappyTabs’ “Bleeding Love” hip-hop routine or Mia Michaels’ door routine, “Mercy.” Whatever. But the routine that I REALLY wanted to win was Derek & Julianne Hough’s Jive to “Great Balls of Fire.” I’m a little biased just because I frickin love them! But in all honesty, I mean we really gotta give them kudos, especially Julianne, because she performed this routine the week after she had surgery! 
  • Outstanding Special Class – Short Form Live Action Program: Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog! Finally! Joss Whedon gets some Emmy love! and dare I say this is just the beginning for Neil Patrick Harris related wins?

Now onto last night’s MTV Video Music Awards. What can be said about it that hasn’t already been said?

  • MJ Tribute was just amazing! The dancers at the beginning, each dressed according to a certain MJ era, was done in great taste. And then Janet came out for Scream! INCREDIBLE! Not to mention that she was joined by a whole slew of outstanding dancer/choreographers including Wade Robson, Brian Friedman, Tyce Diorio, Laurie Ann Gibson, and many others, all of whom were no doubt inspired by Michael.
  • Katy Perry can write some pretty damn catchy songs. But sing live she cannot. Additionally, she should not have been allowed to sing We Will Rock You. I’m sorry, it was just bad.
  • The moment @ the awards show that will live on forever and discussed more than the MJ Tribute? Kanye West taking away Taylor Swift’s moment. Seriously, that was such a douche move on Kanye’s part and incredibly rude. Poor Taylor was getting her moment, winning her first Moonman, every one in the audience being so incredibly happy for her (the look on Pink’s face was like a look of extreme proudness) and ‘Ye had to go and ruin it! Like WTF?! The camera cuts to Beyonce and she didn’t even know what to do at that moment.
  • umm Lady Gaga…Honestly, I have never liked her. I think she’s also like Katy Perry in that she can’t sing live. I’ll give her this though: Thanks for hiring Mark Kanemura and Paula Van Oppen as your backup dancers, because they are amazing dancers (plus from following his Twitter, Mark is such an incredibly huge GaGa fan).
  • Adam Brody presenting!! aww I’ve missed seeing you on my TV screen every week…
  • New Moon looks 10x better than Twilight. Seriously. And btw, great choice on casting Dakota Fanning. Perfect choice for the role of Jane. Cute but creepy.
  • Pink. I’ve seen her perform live before (when she opened up for JT during the first leg of the FutureSex/LoveShow) and she already started doing her acrobatics up high. Seriously, she’s got major points for bravery and style.
  • Props to Beyonce for being so incredibly classy upon receiving the award for Video of the Year. Allowing Taylor Swift to come back on stage and let her have her moment. I’ve always respected Beyonce but she just put herself on a whole other level with this class act.
  • Jay-Z and Alicia Keys totally brought it on “Empire State of Mind.” Love this song! But Lil Mama coming up at the end? umm what the hell?

Overall, this was definitely a memorable VMA to say the least. For the good and bad, people will remember this year’s award show. And I think that’s all MTV could really hope for. Now, even though its an entirely lost cause, if only MTV would start airing MORE music videos. No more if this The Hills crap. Please? Thanks.