LOS ANGELES—Music’s biggest night has arrived. Were their surprises: absolutely! Disappointments: without a doubt! The one thing about the Grammy awards is that it is indeed the most unpredictable awards show ever.
The competitive race for Song of the Year was a victory for Sam Smith for “Stay With Me.” Record of the Year was presented by Jamie Foxx and Grammy legend Stevie Wonder to Sam Smith for “Stay With Me.” Smith had a pretty good night taking home a total of four prizes. I had some reservations about his win for Record of the Year as there could be discussions for other nominees who should have had the prize, Sia anyone?
The entire concept of allowing artist after artist each year to sweep all the major categories baffles me. Its one thing if the song is absolutely incredible and inescapable, but if its not, it just shows how out of tune the Recording Academy is with everyone else in not spreading out the awards. They can change this by not allowing the same song to be nominated in both the Record and Song of the Year categories. It’s either one or the other.
Once again, “NCIS: Los Angeles” star LL Cool J hosted the festivities, like I said before this is one of those shows that does not need a host. It’s just unnecessary compared to the Oscars or Golden Globes. The ceremony kicked off with a performance by AC/DC with a rocking rendition of “Highway to Hell.” The first award of the night for Best New Artist was presented by Taylor Swift to Sam Smith. Smith was a bit emotional well accepting his award on stage.
New musical starlet Ariana Grande hit the stage to perform “Just a Little Bit of Your Heart.” She definitely has some singing pipes that echoed throughout the building. Sir Tom Jones and Jessie J performed an all-time love classic. Best Pop Solo Performance went to Pharrell Williams for “Happy.”
Miranda Lambert took the stage to rock out, not as exhilarating as her past performances. Bee Gees alum Barry Gibb took to the stage to present the award for Best Pop Vocal Album to Sam Smith for “In the Lonely Hour.”
Kanye West performed his latest hit. It’s hard to believe it’s been nearly six years since West last graced the Grammy stage. Nicki Minaj and Miley Cyrus presented pop phenomenon Madonna to the stage for her hit “Living for Love.” She had horns, bulls and the message of being unique and yourself. The performance was quite dramatic to say the least, full of theatrics including a gospel choir. Josh Duhamel, Julian Edelman and Malcolm Butler presented the award for Best Rock Album to Beck “Morning Phase.”
Best R&B Performance went to Beyonce feat. Jay-Z “Drunk in Love.” She can now add another Grammy to her mantle. Ed Sherran hit the stage with the assistance of Herbie Hancock, John Mayer and a host of other musical talents.
Gwen Stefani and Adam Levine hit the stage to perform “My Heart is Open.” Vocally speaking, the duo harmonized quite well. Hozier performed his moving hit “Take Me to Church” alongside Annie Lennox. The award for Best Country Album was given to Miranda Lambert for “Platinum.”
Pharrell took to the stage with assistance from Lang Lang and Hans Zimmer to perform a new version of the hit “Happy.” It was lively, similar to the energy that was contagious at the 2014 Academy Awards. In perhaps one of the most moving performances of the night, Katy Perry took to the stage to sing against domestic violence.
Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga hit the stage to perform their hit “Cheek to Cheek,” giving that old time feel to music. Usher hit the stage to sing a Stevie Wonder classic, but it did have that x-factor quality, until Mr. Wonder himself took to the stage.
A moment many had been waiting for involved the performance between Kanye West, Sir Paul McCartney and Kanye West singing “FourFiveSeconds.” Not a pairing that you would expect to work well, but if you hear the tune a few times it becomes catchy. Sam Smith took the stage with Mary J. Blige to sing his inescapable hit “Stay With Me.”
I’ll be honest I was ready to check out, the ceremony went close to 45 minutes to an hour without handing out another trophy. It was just performance on top of performance. This might be the only awards show that just doesn’t get people want to see their favorite artists take the stage to accept awards and hear speeches. The music is great, but it’s not the sole determinate of an awards show, people want to see awards handed out.
As always Prince, received a standing ovation as he took to the stage with his cane, he proclaimed the importance of albums. He presented Album of the Year to Beck for “Morning Phase.” Indeed a shocker to say the least, I thought the award hand’s down had Beyonce’s name written all over it, if not her Sam Smith. For a moment, the entire viewership gasped when Kanye West stormed the stage for a second, but was pulled away. I think we were all screaming the same thing, Beck, really?
Sia dramatically took the stage to perform her massive hit “Chandelier” with the help of SNL funny lady Kristen Wiig. The audience did not get to see Sia’s face as she performed the hit, but we did see dancing prodigy Maddie assist Wiig in the dramatic performance.
I hate to say this, but the 2015 Grammy Awards did not have any epic moments on the stage in my opinion. There weren’t those, wow moments of performances that literally had audiences talking. To make matters worse the show clocked in at over 3 hours and 30 minutes!
Yep, the Grammys are pushing the envelope in being an awards ceremony longer than the Academy Awards. Want to know the difference? The Oscars actually hand out awards for all 24 categories, not just a handful. I’ll admit I may not tune in to the 2016 Grammy Awards if a change doesn’t occur!