Music’s Biggest Night
On Sunday, the 14 of March, the Recording Academy aired their 63rd Grammy Award Show. For those of you who live under a rock, the Grammys are a night to celebrate all genres of music in several different ways. The celebration was small this year, due to good ol’ COVID; there was an outdoor space set up outside the Los Angeles Convention Center for the stars to gather and celebrate their musical achievements. The event spanned almost four hours and was hosted by The Daily Show host, Trevor Noah. The Grammy categories span all sorts of aspects of music; there are awards for things like best new artist and there are even awards for best album packaging. For me, personally, there was a huge lack of Joy Division representation at the Grammys this year, but they have also been split up for more than forty years now. Anyways, here’s a quick rundown of all the major categories and their winners.
Record of the Year: “Everything I Wanted” by Billie Eilish
Album of the Year: “Folklore” by Taylor Swift
Song of the Year: “I Can’t Breathe” by H.E.R.
Best New Artist: Megan Thee Stallion
Best Solo Pop Performance: “Watermelon Sugar” by Harry Styles
Best Pop Duo/Group Performance: “Rain on Me” by Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande
Best R&B Performance: “Black Parade” by Beyonce
Best Pop Vocal Album: “Future Nostalgia,” Dua Lipa
Best Rap Song: “Savage” by Megan Thee Stallion, featuring Beyoncé
Best Country Album: “Wildcard” by Miranda Lambert
Best Dance/Electronic Album: “Bubba” by Kaytranada
Best Rock Album: “The New Abnormal” by the Strokes
Best Alternative Music Album: “Fetch the Bolt Cutters” by Fiona Apple
Best Progressive R&B Album: “It Is What It Is” by Thundercat
Best R&B Album: “Bigger Love” by John Legend
Best Rap Album: “King’s Disease” by Nas
And just in case you were wondering, the award for Best Record Packaging went to Dessert Sessions for their album Vols.11 & 12.
Now, The Grammys is an award show, of course, so it’s got to be full of pizzaz, so there are also performances from the year’s biggest acts in music. There were all sorts of performances, like sister rockers, Haim, who closed out the show’s opening segment. I got the chance to see Haim back in 2014, and their performance all these years later to an international audience was just as phenomenal as they were at a small venue in Chicago before they had gained the attention they have now. Danielle and Alana took turns playing the drums while Este shredded it up on her bass.
There was also Harry Styles who played his song “Watermelon Sugar,” backed by Dev Hynes of Blood Orange. I have to be honest, watching Styles perform this song for the purpose of writing this song is the first time I’ve ever heard it. The song itself is pretty okay (definitely catchy), but the performance was impeccable. The backing band was beyond impressive and Harry Styles brought such a fun energy to the stage. It was fun and cute. Go off, Harry.
Silk Sonic, a superduo, if you will, comprised of Anderson .Paak and Bruno Mars debuted at The Grammys, too. It was such a beautiful performance. Bruno Mars, Anderson .Paak and their back-up singers donned the same brown-orange suits and slick sunglasses with stars gleaming in the background. They looked like one of those cheesy old school R&B groups from way back in the day like the Chi-Lites, and it left me speechless.
Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion also gave the world a live debut of their controversial feminist anthem “WAP,” and it’s safe to say that they stole the show. Cardi and Meg both impress me to no end; they can rap, they can dance, they’re literally gorgeous; it’s just what they gave us for the Grammys. Their performance was more than extravagant with the countless background dancers, the giant stripper heel that also functioned as a stripper pole and a place for a cage (heel?) dancer to do her thing. The graphics on the stage behind them flaunted off money. It was insane.
I’m not the biggest fan of awards shows like this, so I couldn’t stomach watching anymore performances, but among the others to grace the stage this year were Billie Eilish, Post Malone, Taylor Swift with those two guys from the National, or maybe it was Justin Vernon, and countless others.