Over the course of a three and half-hour marathon, the Recording Academy gave out only 10 of their 98 awards. I understand that we can't see every award given out during a telecast, but come on, both Neil Young and Mavis Staples got their first Grammys ever for their music and you'd never know it. At least, a quickie read-out or a written list of winners would have given these and other honoured artists their due.
Check out the Oscar telecasts to see how it could be done. The Academy even gives a small nod to the awards in the technical department presented the day before the big Sunday telecast.
As it is, the Grammys' live performances that dominated the evening went from the sublime to the ridiculous to the downright crappy. Poor Barbra Streisand. Never thought I'd be the one to tell the greatest star that she's just too stage-fright-stricken to be doing a live performance on television. I mean, it's obvious that Bob Dylan just doesn't give a shit, but Streisand should know better.
As for the ridiculous Cee Lo Green performance, who'd have thought he'd be channeling Elton John's previous performance with the muppets?
But honestly, does Mick Jagger still have it, or what? The guy's approaching 70 and still blew everybody off the stage. I'm hoping his performance will silence the usual howls of outrage every time the Rolling Stone hit the road. Too old? I don't think so.
Speaking as someone who thinks Justin Bieber is cute and talented but not much of a singer, I didn't think he deserved the Grammy nominations, let alone the awards - these are prizes given to recordings, not kudos for the year's most popular pop stars. Esperanza Spalding's win in the New Artist category was a shocker, though, but given the extent to which that prize can put the stink on an artist, she may be careful what she wished for.
Loved that the Grammys put the spotlight on two tracks that show the power of pop to repeat. Lady Antebellum's multi-ward winning song Need You Know does sound like a knock-off of the Alan Parsons project's Eye In The Sky. And hats off to Lady Gaga's pro-queer song Born This Way, even if it really is just Madonna's Express Your self slightly tweaked.
And Bravo Arcade Fire, winner of the Grammy for Album of the Year. Wouldn't it be funny if they didn't win the Polaris prize this year? Or will Canadian critics just get all poopy over the indie band's big American win?