20 Questions: 2014 Grammy Review

Before I tear apart lovingly recap the 56th Grammy Awards, let’s just go ahead and address the elephant in the room.

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Not him. He wasn’t nominated this year.

As I feared would happen, Flo Rida’s mutant offspring Macklemore and Ryan Lewis swept almost all of the rap categories, including Best Rap Album. I bet most of you reading this haven’t even heard the appropriately titled The Heist. Trust me, it’s not even in the same stratosphere as the real Best Rap Album, Kendrick Lamar’s good kid, m.A.A.d. city, one of the best albums in the past decade. My beef is not about Macklemore being white or pop or any other dumb excuse. Kendrick’s album was just better.

But forget Kendrick. According to the Grammy overlords, this man is the new god MC.

For those of you rioting on Twitter in Kendrick’s honor, don’t be mad at Macklemore. Direct your disgust at the out-of-touch Recording Academy, the same academy that never gave Nas, The Notorious B.I.G., Jimi Hendrix or even KEITH SWEAT a Grammy.

Don’t worry, King Kendrick would have his revenge. It was one of the brightest spots in an eternally long night.

1. Beyonce and Jay Z opened the show with “Drunk In Love” in a shockingly lazy performance. When you’re known for high-energy performances, why did Bey think her fans would be impressed with dry ice smoke and stripper moves on a chair? We could have called Rihanna if we wanted to see that. But the second that beat dropped, my wifey started krumping around the living room so at least she was happy. SERFBOART. SERFBOART.

2. LL Cool J served as host, looking younger than he did on “In The House” in the 90s. Who is supplying this man with botox sandwiches and fountain of youth smoothies?

And it wouldn’t be an LL-hosted award show without The Official LL Lip-Lick Counter, which hit 19 just for his opening monologue. Five minutes into the show and it looks like he’s got on collard green lip gloss.

3. What was up with Lorde’s performance of “Royals?” I love the song and I love her, but I didn’t love seeing her twitch and stutter like a rusty C3PO. And she’s the oldest looking 17-year-old I’ve ever seen.

LL Lip-Lick Counter: 21

4. Katy Perry’s performance of “Dark Horse” was surprisingly good (even with Juicy J fumbling around on stage) but how long do we have to wait until one of these Twitter philosophers writes a think piece on all of the Illuminati symbolism Perry threw in our faces? Of course, those same enlightened souls are the first ones to buy these evil albums and stare at her chest, but whatever.

5. I’m gonna make Taylor Swift a profile on Christian Mingle so she can finally get a man and GO AWAY. When is she gonna realize that if you break up with THAT many guys, maybe the guys aren’t the problem?

6. We got yet another Pink performance at an award show, so you know what that means – she’s gonna be hanging from the ceiling in giant rubber bands. I’m not saying that it isn’t impressive but her Ribbon in the Sky routine is getting mad old. Why can’t she come up with new circus acts?

7. Conversation at Soul In Stereo studios, during the Justin Timberlake Mastercard commercial:

Wifey: Will Justin Timberlake come to my house if I get a Mastercard?

Me: Well, if so, I hope he likes seeing black men wearing nothing but draws and church socks.

8. Could anybody understand what Ozzy Ozborne was saying on stage? He was chewing up his words like Andre the Giant. Closed captions probably would have just looked like this: ???????????? ???????? ????

9. Poor Ringo. Why did y’all tell him to stick to the drums? He’s like the sad old choir member who still gets solos because of seniority even though his voice is like a stalled Chevy trying to start up. Just smile and nod and hope the pain ends soon.

10. A drunken Jamie Foxx awarded Jay Z the award for Best Rap Sung Collaboration for “Holy Grail.” Jay claimed daughter Blue will have a new sippy cup. I wonder if Memphis Bleek is mad that he now has more dishes to wash?

LL Lip-Lick Counter: 25

11. As we know from the infamous “Control” verse, when Kendrick Lamar is mad, fans reap the benefits. K. Dot teamed with Imagine Dragons for a mashup of “Radioactive” and “m.A.A.d. city,” resulting in one of the best performances in Grammy history. That’s not hyperbole, people. Kendrick performed with the fury of 1,000 snubbed Grammy nominees. The homie shut it down, opened it back up, then burned it to the ground.

Don’t believe me? Here you go.

12. How do follow up a performance of that magnitude? You dress up Karey Musgraves like Rainbow Brite and have her sing us to sleep with some ol’ Nick Jr.-sounding song. I’ll pass, playa.

LL Lip-Lick Counter: 35

13. So who was the biggest star of the night?

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Pharrell’s hat. I swear he smuggled Pusha T and Malice in the building with that thing. It even got its own Twitter account. 

They should have never given y’all smartphones….

14. Skateboard P, who won Producer of the Year, teamed with the Daft Punk robots, Nile Rodgers and Stevie Wonder for a live performance of “Get Lucky.” Listen, I know Stevie is a living legend and all but who will finally get the courage to tell that man to call it a career? The poor guy couldn’t remember half the lyrics and those braids of his are 80 percent scalp now. His hairline is tucked into his socks.

15. So y’all can harp on about Pharrell’s hat all night but not give Stevie some friendly advice?

We need to do better.

16. Did you consider it an upset that Bruno Mars’ Unorthodox Jukebox won Best Pop Vocal Album? I did. I also thought his haircut made him look like Marla Gibbs from 227.

17. Why did I doubt Metallica and pianist Lang Lang? Their collaboration for “One” wound up being one of the best of the night.

18. I’m sure the biggest headline-grabber in the morning will be Wacklemore’s performance of “Same Love,” complete with a “marriage ceremony” of straight and same-sex couples, officiated by Queen Latifah.

Read that sentence again and let the stupid sink in. Let’s use common sense and break this down.

Since when does a queen have the power to marry someone?

19. Why didn’t they just call Rev. Run?

20. And why was Madonna dressed like the slave-owning Leo DiCaprio in “Django?” None of it made any sense and came off like a blatant publicity stunt. Instead of organically creating a magical moment (like the Kendrick/ID performance), the Grammy Gods shoe-horned in this act of tolerance that (unintentionally) cheapened and objectified 33 couples. It left a horrible taste in my mouth.

At this point I guess someone in the back remembered that real people have to work in the morning so they rushed things to a close, with Daft Punk winning Record of the Year for “Get Lucky” and Album of the Year for Random Access Memories. We never saw poor LL again.

Overall, this was the usual Grammys hodgepodge of great performances, lazy acts, dodgy awards, cool reunions and hollow attempts to grab national headlines. It’s what you’ve come to expect from a four hour awards show.

At least we’ll always have Pharrell’s hat.

What did you think of the show? Speak out in the comments.



  1. As usual, great recap. Though I was “krumping” to Drunk In Love as you said, I was underwhelmed by Bey’s performance too. We’ve come to expect nothing less than greatness from her on stage and, unfortunately, last night did not deliver.

    But no one ever answered my question about MasterCard and Justin Timberlake…

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