The Grammys: Drunk on Winehouse
Every year the Grammy Awards ceremony proves—among other things—how far out of step my tastes are with mainstream music, a state of affairs with which I came to terms, oh, in the early '80s. It also reveals the dearth of imagination/adventurousness of the nominating committee. Most of the music that charts and excites people of mainstream sensibilities just strikes me as bland and insipid. Must be the way I'm hard-wired. I like weird, edgy shit, generally speaking, the sort of stuff the powers that be in the music biz don't know even exists. (The music industry ignores Dave Segal's aesthetics at its own peril.) C'est la mort.
But there are always a few exceptions, and this year I have to admit I'm pleased that Amy Winehouse did so well, racking up five wins for best songwriter (“Rehab”), record of the year (“Rehab”), best new artist, best female vocal pop performance (“Rehab”) and best pop vocal album (Back to Black).
I hope that this avalanche of trophies will motivate the genuinely gifted Winehouse to get off the pipe, though I fear that it will instead inspire record-company moguls to encourage their artists to start smoking crack in order to acquire that golden Grammy magic. If there's one thing you can count on, it's major labels copying what's been successful. Winehouse's impressive display at this year's Grammys will likely lead to boom times for coke dealers and paparazzi.
Here's the complete list of Grammy results (in the best dance/electronic album category, LCD Soundsystem wuz robbed! That Chemical Brothers album was weak). Do not read while operating heavy machinery.
Below you can view that subdued, humble performance by Daft Punk and Kanye West, in case you missed it last night.