Sunday night’s Grammy Awards ceremony was definitely one for the books. The majority of the production felt so perfectly orchestrated that the showrunners and performers all deserve a tip of the hat for creating another memorable event. By night’s end though, the lists of winners showed there were notable winners and losers whose awards — or lack thereof — will create ripples that will be felt long after the 59th annual presentation of music’s biggest evening. Maybe the Grammys have come a long way, but they still have a considerable amount of work left to be done when it comes to paying proper recognition to all artists instead of only a select few.
Adele trumping Beyonce for Album of the Year and the domino effect
Let’s give credit where it’s due because Adele’s 25 was a remarkable record and “Hello” was so ubiquitous it’s hard to imagine anything besting the two in the night’s biggest categories, Album of the Year and Record of the Year. She shouldn’t have to apologize for her greatness or for the committee’s decision to crown her for her work.
But if any one artist should have been able to snatch the trophies from Adele, Beyonce would’ve been the only one and she very well should have won. Lemonade was dynamic and empowering not just to women of color but all women. That isn’t to say that men couldn’t enjoy the the project too, because it was creative and well crafted, and anyone who enjoys music could find a way to relate to it on some level. It seems the only people who couldn’t connect with it were the ones in the academy who cast the votes.
In a perfect world, Beyonce would’ve won Album of the Year and Rihanna would capture the Best Urban Contemporary Album, you know, so she at least takes home one damn award for Anti-, which may go down as one of her greatest bodies of work when her career is said and done. But, since Queen Bey got wedged into the Urban category, that made her winner by default and left Rihanna in the cold. Thank goodness she had her diamond-encrusted flask to keep her warm.
At the beginning of the night, Beyonce and Rihanna were up for 16 awards combined. They walked away with two, both of which belonged to Beyonce. Let that sink in.
Drake did the work of two people with “Hotline Bling”
To be completely honest, I don’t know what the hell a Best Rap/Sung Performance is exactly, but every other song in the category included two artists… except “Hotline Bling.” If every song there features a singer and a rapper, how the hell did Drake pull off the win by only singing? If anything, whoever was behind selecting the songs should’ve throw “Work,” you know, the song that follows the singer-rapper patter, in here and that way they could’ve killed the proverbial two birds with one stone by servicing Drake and Rihanna with recognition for their year in music.
Chance The Anointed One
Chance The Rapper taking home Rap Album of the Year is an upset but it isn’t at the same time. Chance winning Best New Artist and Best Rap Performance were semi-expected since his profile has grown tenfold with the release of Coloring Book. However, him taking home rap’s top honor was definitely the work of a higher power and/or Larry Jackson-Apple. From day one, Chano campaigned just to have the project considered. Initially, he didn’t say anything about winning. He just wanted to be included so “mixtape rappers” and any young artists looking to create the new rules would feel like they had a shot in hell for their project being recognized in the future.