Sunday, February 13, 2005

Reflections on the Grammys

I only caught perhaps 45 minutes of it, but I wanted to share with my adoring public and the dedicated readers of this illustrious blog (all one or two of you) my thoughts on the Grammys:

1.) Queen Latifah has a pretty good voice. I think it's great that she's proven that she's a bonafide vocal talent by staking out a niche in jazz singing. She came off pretty well as MC too.

2.) Alicia Keys is a monstrous talent. I'm not too into her music, mind. But I thought her performance showed a great deal of confidence as a performer and as a singer. I wasn't overly impressed with Jamie Foxx's turn singing, but I think he's a pretty good actor. (Haven't seen 'Ray' yet, but saw him in 'Collateral', which he was okay in.)

3.) Black Eyed Peas suck, unless of course you're into four people jumping up and down on stage and saying things like "Put your hands up in the air, and swing 'em like you just don't care". I kind of get the feeling they're trying model themselves on Sly and Family Stone, but they just lack the originality and talent to pull it off.

4.) Green Day rocked, as usual. I'm not terribly blown away by their songwriting abilities, as they basically regurgitate the same chord sequences (all three of 'em) time and again. But they're compelling and energetic performers.

5.) Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony were definitively boring, not the least of which was because they chose to sing in spanish. No offense, but if you're going to sing in another language, it better be a stellar piece of music, like say the 4th movement of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. Needless to say, their song was not. It wasn't even on par with Falco's "Der Kommisar" or "Rock Me Amadeus".

6.) Los Lonely Boys...enjoy it while it lasts, kids. Enough said.

7.) Dickie Betts and Lynyrd Skynyrd with assorted country singers piping in....hmmm. Hate to say it, but southern rock still kind of creeps me out in a 'Deliverance' kind of way. Skynyrd played a few bars of "Free Bird", which was enough for me to cringe. But it didn't even compare to the cringe-worthiness of "Sweet Home Alabama", a song which is a blatant celebration of all that disgusts me. Sorry folks, complimentary songs about George Wallace just don't float my boat. The best I can say about it is that Wallace was a Democrat, and as a conservative, I take no responsibility for Lynyrd Skynyrd or George Wallace. I did like Dickie Betts' version of "Ramblin' Man", which is a good tune and has no awful, redneck, "South shall rise again" overtones.

8.) Led Zeppelin got a lifetime achievement award. One of the greatest rock and roll bands of all time doesn't need the validation of the Grammy people.

9.) Prince won an award and didn't bother to show, much less even videotape a "thank you" to the academy. How cool is that? (Pretty cool, I think.)

Anyway, that's my two cents.

Ars longa, vita brevis.


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