56th Annual Grammy Awards: The Good, The Bad and The Irrelevant

The best from 2013 in the world of music were honored and made the mediocre painfully stand out.

The Grammys are weird. Like any other music award show, but multiplied by a billion, there’s this understanding that who wins is actually kind of irrelevant, but somehow we still care so much.

This year, if we pretend the nominees to begin with were the right choices (which they largely weren’t), the Grammy winners aren’t totally, offensively wrong, which is pretty much all any music lover can ask for.

But the awards show is about more than who walks away with that little gold trophy; it’s about the performances. This year was marked by an uncharacteristic lack of spectacle and a somewhat unsurprising overload of old, irrelevant musicians who are not at all representative of the industry as we hip young college kids know it.

So here’s my take on the 56th Grammy Awards: The Good, the Bad and the Irrelevant.


The Good

1. Beyonce is the queen of the world.The end.

2. Lorde continues to amaze me. I can’t decide if she’s weird or if she’s so normal that it’s weird to watch her get famous without compromising, like, at all. Regardless, I want to be her best friend, read poetry with her and make her write me beautiful pop bff songs. Her performance of “Royals” was stark and haunting, and her quirky dance moves were totally endearing. Plus, she absolutely deserved her wins: Song of the Year for “Royals,” Best Pop Solo Performance for “Royals.”

3. The robots of Daft Punk were inarguably the stars of the Grammys this year. Between their well-earned wins (Album of the Year for Random Access Memories, Best Pop Duo/Group Performance for “Get Lucky,” Record of the Year for “Get Lucky,” Best Dance/Electronica Album for Random Access Memories and Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical for Random Access Memories) and their dance-alicious performance of “Get Lucky” with vocals by Pharrell and Stevie Wonder, the electronic music masters have finally made their comeback. Random Access Memories was probably the best album of the year, so it’s amazing to me that the Grammys actually got it right this time.

4. P!nk is in this strange place where she continuously has really successful singles, but she isn’t the pop culture celebrity icon that Katy Perry or Lady Gaga have become. But she showed the Grammys what a good performer is by twirling, splitting and flipping over the audience during her performance of “Try” with fun.’s Nate Ruess. The woman is an athlete, plain and simple, and the fact that she sang almost flawlessly through all of that acrobatic spectacle just makes Taylor Swift’s and Katy Perry’s performances look even more embarrassing.

5. Macklemore and Ryan Lewis made Grammy history by performing while 33 couples got married in the audience. It was a beautiful demonstration of the power of music over culture, and it even got a few tears out of Keith Urban. Plus, the duo took home the award for Best New Artist, Best Rap Performance for “Thrift Shop” (beating out Eminem and Jay Z, which I’m still on the fence about, but “Thrift Shop” is a great song so whatever), Best Rap Song for “Thrift Shop” (beating out “New Slaves” by Kanye which I know is not fair but I’m still not terribly mad about) and Best Rap Album for The Heist.

6. The Grammys broke up with Taylor Swift, and she’s probably writing a song about it right now. Yep, one of the best parts of the Grammys this year was that Taylor Swift didn’t win a single one. And it’s not that I hate her music (well, I kind of do), it’s just that she truly wasn’t the best choice in any of her categories. And she never has been, but this year justice prevails. Her dance moves were pretty awesome, too. Power to you, girl. I look like that when I dance to Kendrick Lamar, too.


The Bad

1. There is something really obnoxious about Katy Perry to me. Well, a few things. First of all, she’s a bad singer. And when you have an entire team of songwriters at your disposal, your only job is literally to sing the songs well. You have one job, Katy, and you’re not good at it. Aside from her weak vocals, there’s something so insincere about her to me. She was a wholly unbelievable goth witch whatever-that-was.

2. “Blurred Lines” needs to die, but instead, the Grammys decided to tarnish Chicago with it. God knows why that sweet, funky band whose music has graced pep bands everywhere decided to perform with Robin Thicke, but I like to believe someone blackmailed them into it.

3. Um, can someone please explain to me how and why the greatest part of the evening was cut off? Seriously, let’s get Trent Reznor, Queens of the Stone Age, Lindsey Buckingham and Dave Grohl together, rocking the daylights out of one stage, and then lets cut the performance off because LL Cool J awkwardly talked for a few too many minutes earlier in the night. Reznor said it best via Twitter: “Music's biggest night... to be disrespected.  A heartfelt F**K YOU guys.”

4. The Best Rock Song category was kind of depressing. I generally roll my eyes at people who say “Rock is dead,” but the Grammys were trying to prove it. The Rolling Stones and Black Sabbath were nominated, and Queens of the Stone Age weren’t. Also, Nine Inch Nails wasn’t nominated at all. Ridiclous.


The Irrelevant

1. Can someone please explain to me why Metallica played one of their songs from 1989? Considering they haven’t put out an album since 2008? Like, really, I don’t understand. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the performance. I just wish I hadn’t spent the first half of it trying to understand why it was happening.

2. How did Bruno Mars win Best Pop Vocal Album? Is he even still, like, existing? And why? Why is he existing? Maybe he’s less irrelevant than I like to believe he is, but I can’t handle the thought that he’s still a big deal.

3. Okay, I know a minute ago I was mini-gushing over Chicago, but it’s only because I was in band in high school. Band kids love “25 or 6 to 4.” Ask any of us. But when I’m real with myself, I know that Chicago had no business being at the Grammys. They haven’t even put an album out since 2011, and it was a Christmas CD.

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