Nevermind The Posers

See ya in the pit.

2010 Grammys- Taylor Swift’s Day or Mayday February 5, 2010

By Gregory Swindasz

So the Grammys are all said and done, but the dust storm known as Taylor Swift has not yet settled.  Taking home the most honored award in the music industry has not helped the doe-eyed country phenomena, in fact, it seems to have only hurt her future.  As we all know, after the Kayne West MTV VMA embarrassment, Swift was on top of her game.  Even Obama called West a “jackass”.  We all felt bad for the cute young sacran-sweet blond from Tennessee.  Her teenage ballads remind us of a time when we were young and hopeful for our fairytale ending (“Love Story”) or of the vulnerable times of young lives (“Fifteen”), but no one, at least of those who I have spoken to, thought she deserved what she got – either at the VMAs or the Grammys.

With contenders like “I Am…Sasha Fierce” (Beyoncé) and “The Fame” (Lady Gaga), Swift’s “Fearless” did not seem to compare for Album of the Year.  As cute as the songs are, this was not game changing music that would go down in the anthems of American music history.  Songs like “Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)” or “Poker Face” had a bigger impact on the music world then “Fifteen”.

This is only one piece of the puzzle.  Her performance at the Grammy Awards (and really at any other live on-air performance) was less than stellar.  So much so it prompted CEO of Big Machine Records, Scott Borchetta, to say to the Associated Press: “This is not `American Idol.’  This is not a competition of getting up and seeing who can sing the highest note.  This is about a true artist and writer and communicator.  It’s not about that technically perfect performance.”  When the CEO of your record label has to compare the Grammys to American Idol to defend your seemingly undeserved victory, something is off, and it’s not just her pitch.

There is something off here.  Lady Gaga, Beyoncé, Green Day and so many others gave perfect and amazing performances.  Beyoncé whipping her hair around as she bounced up and down on her knees, Gaga singing with Sir Elton John, or even the triumphant claim by Will.i.am at the end of the Black Eyed Peas performance “Welcome to the future” is what the Grammys are all about.  I’m sorry Taylor, if you’re going to win Album of the Year, at least sing on key.

There could have been something else here.  I remember hearing a few months ago that Swift was what the young people wanted, so the music industry was going to give it to them.  If giving Swift this highest of honors was in some way a shot at reclaiming sales lost to piracy, then that truly is the furthest thing from honorable.  Personally, I don’t believe that’s true.  We will all just have to watch and see how things go.  There is something off here, maybe it is just her pitch or maybe we will never know.

 

GO BIG, GO BOLD…WE GOTTA BEAT GAGA! LIVE PERFORMERS STEP UP THEIR GAME AT THE 2010 GRAMMYS February 4, 2010

{The 2010 52nd Annual Grammy Awards Edition!}

By Dave “The Klone” Maresca

“Well, it’s Grammy time again, and this year fans of the music industry are in for quite the treat – watching all of their favorite artists perform at a higher level of showmanship than ever before.  You may be asking, “Why’s that, Dave?  What’s the big deal this year?” and if I gave you two guesses, you’d probably only need one.  In my opinion, after an entire year of extrava-GaGa-nt  performances from now heavy-hitter Lady GaGa, going all the way back to her self-sacrificial MTV VMA performance in September, the rest of the music industry is revamping their game for the Grammy stage.  With that perspective in mind, let’s look at some of the more notable GaGa Reactionary performances.”

Pink goes nude.  So cool.

When she appeared scantily clad in the 2001 “Lady Marmalade” video, I remember finding Pink rather unremarkable.  Awkward and sort of not as feminine as the other ladies she was covering the song with, I kind of never wanted to see her even close to nude again.  Tonight has completely erased that last thought from my mind.  She picked a terrible song to perform, “Glitter in the Air”, but she combined eroticism with grace wearing little more than strategically placed ribbons, and pulled off an aerial acrobatic beginners’ routine that kept my eyes glued to the screen.  Can’t wait to see the rebuttal from camp GaGa next year.


Black Eyed Peas 2.0
Armor clad, and ready to throw down, the fearsome foursome of pop-candy hip-hop are propelled up through the floor of the stage by some kind of behind-the-scenes movie magic.  I find it hard to imagine that we would’ve seen a performance like this if we didn’t have an entire year of goo-goo for GaGa’s techno-drenched dominance of the digital and analog airwaves.  Am I supposed to really buy that the same peeps who flowed “Let’s Get It Started (Get Retarded)” would really be sharing the stage with retro Beastie Boys robots, if Lady wasn’t the performance sensation of the year?  Is this supposed raising of the bar for the entire awards show simply an industry-wide knee-jerk reaction to the next generation’s Madonna, Brittney Spears, Christina Aguilera and Lindsey Lohan all wrapped into one?  If this performance says anything, it definitely says, “You know it”.

The Economy Blows, Anything Goes.
Slash performed with Jamie Foxx, T-Pain and Doug E. Fresh doing some awful atrocity of a lip-synched, phoned-in, “we don’t give a crap anymore, people will love it” excuse of a song (commonly known as “Blame It”).  Oh how the mighty have fallen.  Slash must really be hurtin’ for cash, what with no touring money or G N’ R royalties being what they used to be.  A little piece of me died tonight.  When the market crashed, it really crashed, huh?
 

Could The Kings of Leon be the new Rock Royalty? September 17, 2009

By: Greg Swindasz

With three Grammy nominations and one award, a world tour, and a new album coming next year will the Nashville band-of-brothers be the next legendary rock band?

The Kings of Leon are by no means a new or upcoming band.  Their follow up to Only by the Night, which was the number one album in the UK in 2008, will be their fifth major studio album.  They have a huge international fan base; Kings of Leon also headlined the Glastonbury, which is the UK’s oldest music festival.  With all of this love and their constant playlist on the radio, it is hard not see to a very bright future.  However, they were not winners this weekend in New York.

Their majesties were nominated for Best Rock Video with “Sex on Fire” at MTV’s 2009 Video Music Awards.  “We lost dammit, maybe next year.  At least we got to see the worst haircut since 1984 try to steal the spotlight from lovely Taylor Swift,” Kings of Leon’s Nathan Followill joked to Digital Spy after Kanye West’s actions on stage.

Their next album is expected in the late fall of 2010.  Guitarist Matthew Followill told BBC earlier this year that the next album could be “a little bit grungier.”  Caleb Followill also said about their new album, “We pretty much now can do what we want.  America has to sit back.”  This could be the start of a new sound for the band.  Who knows, their first four albums could be referred to as “the early years” on Wikipedia one day.  If they stay on their current course, rockers in 2050 might just have sex on fire and put it in their heart shaped box.