LOS ANGELES—I said I wasn’t going to watch the Grammy Awards because the previous few years have been so disappointing, the ceremony tends to go way longer than any other award show during awards season, but I’m glad I watched. I can do without Trevor Noah as host; he does a little too much. Chill with the theatrics and let the music play out. The Grammys are similar to the Screen Actors Guild Awards; no host is needed. The night belonged to Taylor Swift who dominated 2023, and she might be dominating 2024 with an announcement she made and the fact that she made history yet again.
I mean the ceremony kicked off with a thrilling performance by Dua Lipa, but it was the star power that I think mattered more than anything for 2024. Mariah Carey, yes, that Mariah Carey presented the first award of the night for Best Pop Solo Performance to Miley Cyrus for “Flowers.” Miley was stunned to win the accolade and gave tremendous praise to an icon while on stage.
Another beautiful moment was witnessing Luke Combs perform his hit “Fast Car” alongside the iconic Tracy Champman, who first crafted the song decades ago. Karol G won the Grammy for Best Musica Urbana Album. The most nominated person at the 2024 Grammys, SZA took to the stage to perform her hit “Kill Bill” with plenty of epic theatrics. Billie Eilish took to the stage to perform that catchy tune for the blockbuster “Barbie,” “What Was I Made For.”
Miley Cyrus hit the stage to perform her massive hit “Flowers” and just gotta say Miley can belt a tune people. It was Lainey Wilson who walked away with the Grammy for Best Country Album for “Bell Bottom Country.” Lizzo presented the big prize for Best R&B Song to SZA for “Snooze.” It was a bit of a moment because SZA rushed to the stage after questions of whether she would take to the stage. She broke down in tears as she was giving her acceptance speech.
It is a song that has become catchier for me each time I hear it; it is Olivia Rodrigo’s “Vampire.” Rodrigo belted that ubiquitous tune through the crowd who screamed with cheers. U2 performed live from ‘The Sphere’ in Las Vegas and it was something iconic, but it would have been more iconic, if we could see it in person and not have things captured from a TV screen because from what has been said, that venue is iconic. Taylor Swift won the Grammy for Best Pop Vocal Album for “Midnights.” Swift announced big news that her newest album will be dropping on April 19 and you already know the Swifties are in a tizzy with that announcement.
Stevie Wonder took the stage to pay tribute to the late great Tony Bennett. Wonder is still one of the greatest living musicians of my time; my parents love him and so many more generations do as well. Lenny Kravitz paid tribute to Clarence Avant who was coined the ‘The Black Godfather,’ with Jon Batiste performing “Ain’t No Sunshine” and “Lean on Me” with assistance from a choir and Ann Nesby. Oprah Winfrey soon took to the stage to pay tribute to the late great Tina Turner.
It was indeed a treat to see Fantasia Barrino perform a medley of Turner’s iconic hits. I will admit I was hoping to see Beyonce pay tribute to the iconic legend after that performance she did with Tina at the Grammy’s nearly a decade ago. Jay-Z was honored with the Dr. Dre Global Impact Award with his daughter Blue Ivy by his side. I was wondering where Beyonce was and he did give a shot out to his wife Beyonce (who was in the audience), who has had more wins than any other person in Grammy history with 32, yet she has not claimed the Album of the Year prize. That speech that left audible gasps in the audience. I love Jay-Z because he was being completely honest there.
Lionel Ritchie took the stage to present the Grammy for Song of the Year to Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connor for “What Was I Made For?” Billie was really stunned when Lionel announced her name. Brandi Carlile introduced music legend Joni Mitchell who performed on the Grammy stage for the first time ever. Gotta say the last hour of the ceremony as per usual the Grammys dragged longer than it needed to. Again, you still have big prizes like Album of the Year, Record of the Year and Best New Artist that have yet to be presented and the ceremony has already gone past three hours, with plenty of performances still to be shoved at the audience.
Three hours later the Grammy for Best New Artist went to Victoria Monet. I was happy for Victoria, but she did not need her entire entourage on stage to accept the award, it was for Best New Artist, not everyone else. It was a very authentic and gracious speech from Monet.
It was big night for Miley Cyrus who collected the prize for Record of the Year for “Flowers.” Have to say out of all the songs nominated in the race Cyrus had the catchiest of them all. Nearing almost 210 minutes, Billy Joel took to the stage to perform. FYI to the Grammys, you don’t wait until near the end of the ceremony to have Billy Joel perform, you have him hit the stage early in the ceremony.
The biggest trophy of the night, Album of the Year was presented by Celine Dion. Yes, I was wondering who would present the prize. Dion received a standing ovation as she took to the stage, amidst all the health battles she has endured recently. In the end it was Taylor Swift for “Midnights.” Yes, that is her fourth time collecting the top prize at the ceremony making history as the only person to ever accomplish such a feat. Icons like Stevie Wonder and Frank Sinatra have collected that prize three times.
With that, the 2024 Grammy Awards are kaput. For 2025, the Grammys have to find a way to shorten the ceremony in some fashion. The Grammys should NOT be longer than the Academy Awards, it just shouldn’t be, and it totally loses its steam as you near the final hurrah.