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Was 1992 the worst Grammy ever?

Was 1992 the worst Grammy ever?

Anyone who feels the Grammy Awards can be infuriating today will probably want to consider how far the show has come since the late 1990s.

Not only was it an utterly disappointing time for fashion – Hair! Shoulder pads! Big, tight suits! — but the music industry was riding the CD boom, which drove profits to hitherto unimaginable heights and made the hubris balloon even faster: the titans of the industry thought, as they often do, “we have made it, We’ll just keep doing the same thing over and over again and the public will pay us more and more money!” Sounds of the future – hip-hop, alternative, heavy metal – received mandatory new categories for “youth” as a patron pat on the head. (As Ed Sullivan, the boomer generation’s mainstream entertainment curator, called him). By the early 1990s, the Grammy voting body had become ever more out-of-touch, complacent, arrogant and, above all, outdated.

The situation would have reached its lowest point 30 years earlier at the 1992 Grammy Awards—which took place on February 25 at New York’s Radio City Music Hall, a venue that appeared to be the same age as the average Grammy voter at the time. (60 years). As always, some things were great: REM, LL Cool J, Metallica, Bonnie Raitt and BB King all won awards. While accepting, REM’s Michael Stipe made a brief request to people to vote in November’s elections and called for more attention to the horrific ongoing AIDS crisis.

Also that evening, a 22-year-old Mariah Carey completely crushed her performance of “If It’s Over” with none other than her labelmate, Barbra Streisand (a TV moment that was probably arranged as heavily as the song). And was earning a standing ovation. , Next, Seal, in her US live-TV debut, took the name “Crazy” and looked just as amazing as Carrie. Metallica, one of the most powerful live acts of the era, performed “Enter the Sandman” (though drummer Lars Ulrich performed brilliantly when the band won the Best Metal Performance trophy), Grammy and the music industry for not “getting” his band—which was probably on-brand in 1992); Alan Jackson served up some sterling, authentic country.

Yet the terrifying was really, really awful. “Unforgettable,” an overdubbed duet collection of Natalie Cole with her late father, Nat King Cole, Swept Album, Song and Record of the Year, beating out Rhett, Bryan Adams, R.E.M., Amy Grant, and others. (Yes, a 40-year-old song featuring a man who had been dead for a quarter century was deemed Best song and record of 1991.) Nirvana, which skyrocketed from relative obscurity to global-event status over the past seven months, wasn’t even nominated for Best New Artist, which was won by Mark Cohn; They were up for Best Alternative Album, but lost to REM (Nirvana did not win their first – and only – Grammy until 1995, after Kurt Cobain’s death and the band’s disbandment.)

The show got off to a bad start, with Paul Simon playing “Cool River” from his acclaimed, Brazilian-influenced “Rhythm of the Saints” album. However, as a show opener, consider that the song “Let’s Go Crazy” is not, and as a performer, Simon is no Prince-and-Beyoncé duet (to make a completely unfair comparison with 2004 , arguably the biggest Grammy opening of all time).

Michael Bolton followed suit, delivering what must be the most epic mullet in history, and an equally over-the-top version of “When a Man Loves a Woman” (Hey! A cover of a song that was a hit 25 years ago! ), for which he won his second Best Pop Male Vocal Performance trophy. All night, Bonnie Rhett, and Aretha Franklin sang duets with both Michael McDonald and Luther Vandross, yet all singing slow ballads that rarely played to their greatest strength. Metal nominee Megadeth noticed his name misspelled on the show Kieron, and even though there was a second performance by a metal band—one from Seattle, no less—it was Queensrche with its scholarly, orchestrated ballads (and greatest hits),” Silent Lucidity”. Elsewhere, the singers of “The Commitments”, a mostly forgotten hit about a simple (and white) Irish group of friends who play R&B, sang “Mustang Sally” (Hey!, Performed a cover of a song that was a hit 24 years ago!)

And though the show deserves props for featuring both Kenny Rogers and octogenarian country legend Roy Rogers, tribute to the latter is a jaw-dropping, red-white-and-blue-themed, Broadway-Via-Iowa song—and -Dancing was a routine that seemed straight out of a Sunday matinee that many of the audience would have watched as children … during the 1940s. Amidst the crowd, the most beloved is Best Heavy Metal Album nominee Motorhead’s Lemmy (a guy who basically looked like he was shuddering all the time), wearing his worn-out Damin jacket in a sea of ​​tuxes and gowns, his best. Was performing to suppress boredom, anger, pain, or all three.

And we’ve saved perhaps the most notable element for last. Master of ceremonies Whoopi Goldberg, the first black man to host the Grammys, came out at the start of the show holding a light blue cut-out circle on her face, “Because….” , Oh my god, is she really going to say that? , “I’m too sexy for this show, Huh!” That said, referencing Right Said Fred’s novelty hit from last year. Still, she performed well, convincing even the best lines, attracting good people, interacting with and reacting to the audience. She was topical — in a sad-retrospective moment, she celebrated the fact that the show was being broadcast for the first time in countries that “hang behind the Iron Curtain” — including Ukraine. also threw some shade Carrie’s way about her legs-a-palooza dress: “Nice dress, lover! Better hope there is no strong wind!” The Grammys won’t have another Black host for a dozen years.

Decades always take a year or two to overcome the excesses of the previous one and develop their own characteristics, and in the coming months, the 80s will be shown the door in loud fashion. Grunge rebelled against glamour; Sean “Diddy” Combs, a prolific, rising record executive, would transform both R&B and hip-hop with two seminal artists: Mary J. Blige and Notorious Big Even Country Against the ’80s. Revolted: Bill Clinton would defeat George HW Bush Several months later the presidential election completely changed the tone of America’s leadership.

Yet the Grammys brought the backseat. With so much change under their collective noses, they faltered unintentionally and self-satisfied for most of the decade, awarding Album of the Year – an honor that combines excellence as well as topicality. Identifies – “Unplugged”‘s greatest-hits collection of decades-old songs from Eric Clapton and Tony Bennett, artists who were 48 and 69 at the time, as the voting body was broadcasting, “We don’t Know Any of these other records! ,

We all call this something similar to love because in the last 20-ish years, there Is Changes have been made: the Grammys have broadened their membership and nominees’ styles, genders and ethnicities, although there are not always winners – an irony given that only two albums classified as hip-hop, the most cultural and commercial. As a major musical and cultural genre, it has won the top award ever, in the past three decades. The past two years under Harvey Mason Jr. have seen him, at least externally, address some of the deep-rooted vested interest and lack of diversity at the heart of the organization – though much work remains to be done. And to be fair, it’s hard to stage an awards show that incorporates multiple musical genres, yet mainstream enough to avoid the click of death: network-TV channel-change (another obsolete concept) What the Grammys know perfectly well is fast dwindling)

Still, the next time you want to kick off the biggest night of music, try making the glass half full, if only for as long as it takes to drink it—as things can go awry.

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– Article Written By @ from https://variety.com/2022/music/news/worst-grammys-ever-1235221529/

Drashti Jain