February 5, 2024 Musicology No Comments

I don’t look forward to the Grammy Awards anymore. I don’t care about the red carpet fashion show and I don’t care about whatever politics, and ideas that some years “make up for” other years’ wrongs, or that there are big picture wrongs to begin with. I’m in no position to take any position on “honesty” out of Jay Z. I do not care that all the nominees seemed to be women this year. I only care about the songs.

So I care when the songs mostly aren’t special though I should perhaps go back and reconsider if they ever were.

It seems to me that “Flowers,” for instance, is a no better than an average Miley Cyrus song. The song that’s on the radio now is a better song, vocal, and record. If “Flowers” is the only song that ever wins her Grammys, that’ll be a little sad.

Taylor Swift arriving late was my favorite part of the night. Before I get to the songs, let’s preface with the fact that Taylor is a treasure; the defining songwriter and performer of my daughters’ childhoods. (I think my son would say Travis Scott or maybe John Mayer.) And even for Taylor Swift, this has been the year. The tour; a billion dollars. Person Of The Year. And sorry, football. NFL football was already the highest revenue-generating sport in the United States BY A TON, growing YoY by a little under 10%, I think. This year it will probably more than double that YoY growth because of Taylor Swift! Yes, the boyfriend is among the best TE’s ever, but she elevates him and the NFL. They’re all so happy they can hardly count. And she MAKES these award shows. From the Kanye moment to present, she singlehandedly lights them! She knows the words to your song and she’s singing along when you’re headed up to get your award. I’m remembering she was the first to her feet wearing a huge smile when Bonnie Raitt won last year’s Song Of The Year. Jumped like she was spring-loaded.

But Midnights is not a good Taylor Swift record. I was glad to hear there’s another one on the near horizon. Can you not give the Time Person Of The Year the Grammy for Album Of The Year? Probably not.

Other random things sticking in my craw on a Monday. I’ll probably delete this whole post, but right now I’m having fun.

I’d get behind a rule that limits us to just one whisper singer performance, and one mumble singer performance per show. I get it; a lot of today’s singers couldn’t make it through American Idol auditions, and that’s fine. Bob Dylan would’ve been laughed out of there and he did some okay work. Billie Elish is a good artist. But after she did her breathy thing, I had limited patience for Olivia Rodrigo.

Next, Burt Bacharach deserved better.

Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head
Close To You
Say A Little Prayer
A House Is Not A Home
Anyone Who Had A Heart
The Look Of Love
Make It Easy On Yourself
One Less Bell To Answer
That’s What Friends Are For

In Memoriam, we heard only a few seconds of Walk On By, and probably because Doja Cat.

I was pleasantly amused in the middle of “Turn The Lights Back On,” when Billy Joel looked noticeably pissed that he couldn’t keep his Piano Man-esque riff in time; I admire the standards. Joel looks and acts a bit his age, but he still sounds like Billy Joel doesn’t he? How do people NOT STAY SITTING for “You May Be Right?!” Yes, it sounded a bit like the expensive band at someone’s grandma’s 75th, but still, how do you get up and put on your coat when Billy Joel is up there?

Running out of steam here. I don’t love the duets with the deceased. I do love Stevie Wonder, A LOT, but I’m kinda done. “For Once In My Life?” I mean, I guess you had to do it, but

Can I say something positive before I post this?

Burma Boy and that whole performance was cool. Afropop is welcomed to take over the world ASAP and if it completely supplants Reggaeton, that’d be great.

My kid just came to the door and said, “Hey Dad, you think Midnights sucks? Well, we just heard the next Taylor Swift record is gonna be all synth pop.”

Definitely, I’ll be deleting this at some point.

Written by Brian McBrearty