« Song of the Day #869 | Main | Roy Scheider, RIP »

Entertaining Grammy Awards Show

The 50th Annual Grammy Awards were televised last night, and I was delighted to see Herbie Hancock take "Best Album of the Year" for "River:The Joni Letters" (he also won in the "Best Contemporary Jazz Album" category). The last jazz album to win in this category was among my favorite albums of all time: "Getz/Gilberto" (1965) (though jazz-influenced albums have won many times since then, including projects by Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Natalie Cole, and Quincy Jones).

Among the other multiple award winners: Amy Winehouse (5), Kanye West (4), Justin Timberlake (2) for "Love Stoned" (Best Dance Recording) and "What Goes Around... Comes Around" (Male Pop Vocal Performance); Chaka Khan (2), and the late Michael Brecker (2). Even Barak Obama won a Grammy ("Best Spoken Word Album"). So we have a couple of Grammy winners now vying for the Democratic nomination (Hillary Clinton won previously in the same category for "It Takes a Village").

Some of the performance highlights of the night: Ol' Blue Eyes (who appeared miraculously) alongside Alicia Keys in the opening number; Rihanna doing "Don't Stop the Music" during a reunion of The Time; an impromptu "That Old Black Magic" duet with Kid Rock and Keely Smith; Herbie Hancock and classical pianist Lang Lang doing "Rhapsody in Blue"; tributes to Luciano Pavarotti and the Beatles (the expected Michael Jackson tribute didn't happen); and an absolutely sizzling, tear-the-roof-off-the-house "Proud Mary" duet with Tina Turner and Beyonce.

I truly enjoyed the pairings of "old" and "new" throughout the broadcast.


Michael talked me into watching this year, and I'm glad he did. It was a pleasant surprise to see a real musician recieve "Album of the Year."

I culd have done w/o Ms. Keyes' "duet" with the Chairman of the Board, though. She can't hold a candle to that master of subtlety and phrasing and added nothing to Frank's original. (I feel the same way about Natalie Cole's "duet" with her father on "Unforgettable" as well-why try to add to perfection? If it ain't broke....) I could also have done without old whatsherface's barging into the reunion of The Time.

Guess I'm a conservative when it comes to these matters!

On the plus side, it was great to see Keely. Her voice is still pure and clear, and it was funny to see her duet with that skeevy Kid Rock. Keely is 81 and she looks great--she's aging gracefully. Which is more than I can say for Tina Turner, alas. Tina's still got a pretty kickass body for a 70-year-old and she can still move and sing but Good God! What did she do to her face?
Damn that Botox!

Other thoughts: Jerry Lee Lewis may claim he's the Last One Standing but I don't think he could do so without a lot of help. Poor fellow has blown up like a balloon and he looked, sang and acted as if he were half-dead. Little Richard looked all right. I wish they'd just had Jerry Lee and Little Richard perform without that waste of space, John Fogherty.

"Rhapsody in Blue" was wonderful.

Hey, Peri, thanks for posting on this topic. I chuckled with that point about Tina Turner, and Keyes and Sinatra; I think the Natalie Cole thing was a gimmick, but I have to confess that "Unforgettable" (the album) was a real swinger. She did good.

Keely was wonderful... though next to Kid Rock, I did very much miss Louis Prima. :)

Anyway, great to see you back!