“It was a ladies night and the feeling’s right - oh, what a night.”
Those iconic words from Kool & The Gang could be used to describe the telecast of the 61st Grammy Awards. It definitely was a night for female performers.
First, I have to give major props to Alicia Keys for hosting the Grammys. The 15-time Grammy winner did an exceptional job. The audience seemed delighted with her enthusiasm and charm.
Now, on to the performances. The Grammys have gone from being a time-honored tradition to more of a live television concert event. I love this about the Grammys, but I’d still like to see more of the awards handed out during the telecast instead of Googling the winners later.
Camila Cabello opened the show her latin-flavored Grammy-nominated song, “Havana.” She was joined onstage with an entourage of dancers and rappers and also singer Ricky Martin. Martin seemed fitting to accompany Cabello as it was 20 years ago now that he became of superstar with his Grammy debut. Unfortunately, Cabello went home empty-handed.
Performances by Kacey Musgraves and Janelle Monae blew me away. Musgrave’s performed the subtle “Rainbow,” while Monae electrified with “Pynk.” Monae danced like I’ve never seen her do before, almost channeling Prince and Michael Jackson. At one point, she even moonwalked across the stage.
H.E.R. is an artist with whom I wasn’t entirely familiar, but it didn’t take me long to want to know more. Her performance of “Hard Place” was stellar. The same can be said for Brandi Carlile and her performance of “The Joke.”
By that point in the show, I was on my phone filling my Amazon shopping cart. I’m still old-school and want the actual albums.
Diana Ross was a welcome surprise on the Grammy stage. The singer was there to celebrate her 75th birthday. She is such a class act.
The Grammys also paid homage to Dolly Parton, who was named Music Cares “Person Of The Year.” Parton was joined onstage by Miley Cyrus, Katy Perry, Maren Morris and Little Big Town for a medley of her hits.
Lady Gaga performed her mega-hit “Shallow,” without duet partner Bradley Cooper. She also took home three Grammys, including Best Performance Duo/Group, but was shut out for Record and Song of the Year honors. That went to Childish Gambino for “This Is America.”
If I had to question anything, it would be why Jennifer Lopez was chosen to honor Motown’s 60th anniversary. I like J-Lo, but Diana Ross was in the house. Not to mention all the other Motown acts still touring and performing to this day. Why Lopez?
Congratulations to Musgraves for earning the night’s top honor. Her album, “Golden Hour,” was named Album Of The Year.
David T. Farr can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.