GRAMMYs 2014: Pharrell (and his hat) dominated the night
Word of caution: this is a LONG POST
Between Producer of the Year-winning Pharrell Williams and Madonna‘s hat-wearing antics and Taylor Swift and Yoko Ono‘s care-free dancing, the show had a lot of great moments. A complete list of winners can be found here. Here’s my recap, and please remember, these are HIGHLIGHTS from the show (in order for the most part):
What a way to open the show. Beyoncé. Wet. On a chair. One singular object on the screen. And only a diva of Beyoncé’s calibre could command that much attention. She MAKES me get drunk on my love for her and her flawless album. And of course, Mr. Carter comes in to do his little verse, too. I feel like these two kids are inseparable. And they’re so “Crazy In Love.” (I couldn’t help myself lol) And of course it wouldn’t be a good performance without having a TSwift awkward dancing moment. Check out the performance HERE, and a BuzzFeed article documenting the performance itself.
Taylor’s first dance moves of the night https://t.co/llT3nGTZ4a
— BuzzFeed (@BuzzFeed) January 27, 2014
Once we were locked in to the GRAMMYs because of Beyoncé’s “Drunk In Love” splendor, LL Cool J reminded us why we tuned in: the music. Side note: who wrote LL Cool J’s opening speech? It was one to remember, discussing music and its influence on culture and expression. And then they knocked out one of the main awards of the night: Best New Artist. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis owned (Seattle represent!) But really, though. These guys really changed things up when they first sang about having $20 in their pocket. And you’ll see me discuss their historic performance later.
Lorde decided to play it cool and stripped down with her “Royals” performance (which you can check out HERE). The pint-sized New Zealander (we’re born on the same day – get excited!) is only just 17 years old. The only thing was that she started out pretty great, but maybe it was nerves that got to her and made her a jumble of Gollum-esque hand gestures and facial expressions. One of my friends brought this article to my attention that clarifies Lorde’s feelings on her performance expressions. She went for a gothic-Addam’s Family-member-meets-AHS Coven-witchery. There was actually a theme regarding witches and darkness, because from here, Katy Perry killed it with her Maleficent-themed “Dark Horse” performance. Everything was on-point, minus the witch-themed stripper routine during Juicy J’s rap. And loved the Salem throwback vibe at the end, when Katy Perry got burned at the stake. Click HERE to view the performance.
At this point, Daft Punk had already gotten “Lucky” by winning Pop Duo/Group Performance with Pharrell and the legendary Nile Rodgers. From here, Robin Thicke performed decently sans Miley 😦 I was hoping that she’d pop out of someone’s trombone, but, alas, it never happened. John Legend showed us just why we keep him around (and why he’s been a staple on most of my 2013 playlists) when he sang “All Of Me.” Click HERE for his performance. From here, GRAMMYs gave away Best Rock Song to Dave Grohl (of Nirvana and Foo Fighters), Sir Paul McCartney and some other people. It was pretty awesome to see both amazing and noteworthy rock stars up for the Rock Song GRAMMY, but when did we travel back in time? I mean, between The Rolling Stones, Black Sabbath and Sir Paul, there was no room for newer talent. The average age for those nominated had to be at least 65.
And then fate brought us a scorned TSwift (when is she not scorned and emo, btw) to deliver one of my favorite songs off of Red, “All Too Well.” As always, when TSwift plays on the piano, she reminds everyone why she belongs in the music business in the first place. That talent. That songwriting. Minus the hilarious hair-flipping (which I appreciated) and the smoldering gaze into the camera, TSwift slayed on-stage. Check out the performance HERE.
After the commercial break, P!nk showed all of the other performers how to hustle when she pulled off her aerial Cirque du Soleil-esque traipsing “Try” and “Just Give Me a Reason.” And yes, it was just as great as when she pulled it off on tour. And yes, her backup dancer was the same one from the music video and from her tour. And yes, he’s ripped beyond belief and motivates me to go to the gym. While Nate Ruess of Fun.‘s vocals may have been all over the place, I was happy with how P!nk was able to keep hers under control throughout the performance. She’s great at her job.
— Billboard (@billboard) January 27, 2014
Once we were able to get over P!nk setting the bar even higher for the rest of the night’s performances, Lorde took home her first Grammy for Best Pop Solo Performance for “Royals.” Her acceptance speech was possibly the cutest thing ever btw, which you can check out HERE. Things took a turn to SnoozeVille after this, though. Ringo Starr performed, and I know he’s a Beatle and all, but come on man! You have to have more stage presence than that! Oh well. I will say that the performance was nice because he’s part of music royalty.
And then awkwardness struck when Jamie Foxx pretty much called Beyoncé a hot mom WHILE reading out nominations for Rap/Sung Collaboration. In the middle of reading out the nominations. Jay-Z looked like he was going to kill Foxx. You can read about it here. Jay-Z also won for “Holy Grail” with Justin Timberlake. From here, viewers were treated to a Rap-Rock collaboration when Imagine Dragons and Kendrick Lamar joined forces on-stage. Things started out okay, but then became bad VERY fast. And also, Taylor Swift was the ONLY one dancing in the front at the beginning, but people slowly started to join her once the performance started to pick up. You can check it out HERE.
— Kittu Pannu (@KITTUPANNU) January 27, 2014
From there, Kacey Musgraves stole my heart, one neon sign and short skirt at a time. Her song, “Follow Your Arrow,” was amazing. Click HERE to view the cute performance. I had no idea who she was, but after hearing her sing about things that Country music holds dear to its heart in a mocking tone, I was sold. There was something very Lily Allen–Kate Nash-esque about her. And she won some Country award, too, btw.
From here, there were a couple more awards given out, boring performances, nothing too much to note. But then, Daft Punk hit the stage and changed everything. In one of only two televised performances in the US, Daft Punk performed a rendition of “Get Lucky” with Pharrell and the great Stevie Wonder that blew EVERYONE away. I mean, the whole place was on their feet. Even in my apartment, my friends could not help themselves from shaking their booties. The singular performance made the GRAMMYs. It’s moments like this that truly make the GRAMMYs what they are. Mixing the amazingness of songs like Chic’s “Le Freak,” “Daft Punk’s “Around The World” and other dance classics, Daft Punk surprised all of us by just having fun and jamming out on stage.
The performance of the night:
And Yoko Ono’s amazing dance moves.
— Cosmopolitan (@Cosmopolitan) January 27, 2014
After this, Sara Bareilles and Carole King held their own with a beautiful rendition of “Brave,” which you can watch HERE. It was definitely an eye-opening performance that will hopefully put Sara on the map for those who don’t know her (which, unfortunately, is a lot of people). Once these two amazing songwriters finished their inspired performance, they announced the GRAMMY for Song of the Year, which was awarded to Lorde for, you guessed it, “Royals.” And Daft Punk received the Record of the Year GRAMMY for “Get Lucky.”
And then, the second-most-amazing performance of the night: Macklemore performing “Same Love” with Mary Lambert, New Orleans’ own Trombone Shorty, and joined by Queen Latifah and Madonna as they tag-team officiated 33 marriages, ranging from same-sex to other-sex to even interracial. The amount of #equality present in that one performance was unreal. A historic moment in pop culture, the GRAMMYs chose this moment to show how equality and love transcends hatred and boundaries by broadcasting these 33 loving couples’ weddings into the houses of countless people around the world. So many people were exposed to something amazing at that moment. Of course, Madonna performed a slower rendition of her ’80s classic “Open Your Heart” while wearing what seemed to be the hat from her 2000’s Music era. I can’t even begin to explain just how amazing and chilling the performance was. Just watch it below for yourself:
I really want Madonna and Mary Lambert to come sing at my wedding. #GRAMMYs (Still single though. Im just saying.)
— Arjan Writes (@arjanwrites) January 27, 2014
Finally, after this amazing performance, Daft Punk won Album of the Year (ten years too late, if you ask me…) for Random Access Memories. Let me say that while I’m a fan of Daft Punk, this album is not as great as their past albums. Coming off of albums like Alive 2007, Discovery, Homework and even the TRON Soundtrack, I was not as happy with this album as I was those. But everyone and their mother became a Daft Punk fan because of this one, so I can’t complain.
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— BuzzFeed (@BuzzFeed) January 27, 2014
Overall, the show was good. The performances ranged from dull and boring to exceptional and epic. Here’s to next year’s topping it; Beyoncé’s opus will be up for fourteen awards, I’m sure 🙂
What did you think of the GRAMMYs this year? Comment below!