The Grammys


AnnMarie O'Shea, Reporter

The 61st Annual Grammy Awards, held on February 10, was not without controversy. On one hand, there seemed to be attempts to make it more diverse, and it featured many women (including former First Lady Michelle Obama), yet on the other hand more than a few stars stayed home, protesting the lack of diversity in the Grammys. The Grammys were hosted by Alicia Keys, who kept the atmosphere calm and fun. (Let’s talk about her ability to play two grand pianos for a sec.) At the beginning of the show, she had Lady Gaga, Jada Pinkett Smith, Michelle Obama, and Jennifer Lopez come out on stage and give speeches about empowerment and empathy through music. To open the Grammys, Camila Cabello performed “Havana,” a performance that set the energy for the rest of the show with its bright colors and diversity (that wasn’t just talk).

Another remarkable part of the show was the Dolly Parton tribute with Kacey Musgraves, Katy Perry, Miley Cyrus, Marren Morris, Little Big Town, and Parton herself. There was a little bit of a stumble at the beginning of the performance, but the singers really brought it together for an amazing song. A tribute to Aretha Franklin, Yolanda Adams, Andra Day, and Fantasia paid homage to the icon with a performance of “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman.” Yet another tribute was not seen as so spectacular nor memorial. “The Motown performance, which was a tribute to a Motown Records which was an American record label that had mostly African American artists wasn’t fantastic,” said Jillian Mays (‘21), who was disappointed with the Grammys, especially the Motown tribute. Jennifer Lopez’s performance was incredibly disappointing and perhaps could have featured other R&B singers, who could have then set it apart from the rest of the show.

Onto the reason we have the Grammy Awards each year: the talented artists. There certainly was no lack of winning artists, but there was a lack of accepting artists. Many awardees refused to come to the Grammys, including Donald Glover. Childish Gambino won song and record of the year for “This Is America,” the first-ever hip-hop song to be honored with both awards, but with Glover not there to accept the award, things quickly became awkward on stage. Another disappointment was the cutting off  of Drake’s speech with a commercial. Most artists get the chance to say their piece before being ushered off stage, so why not him?

Overall the Grammys could definitely have been more inclusive and hopefully they will be in the future. As Allie Lane (‘21) said, “It was interesting.  We were able to see a variety of artists recognized, though the choices for those who were selected to have Grammys are debatable.”