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44th Annual Grammy Awards
44th Annual Grammy Awards
Written by Steven R. Rochlin


  The show kicked off with the band U2 playing their popular song 'Walk On" from their 2000 release All That You Can't Leave Behind. Having seen U2 perform live many times for well over a decade, It is good to see longstanding bands instead of one hit wonders. In fact U2 has been nominated to win eight Awards this evening! Also of note is that at the Grammy Awards there is no lip sync'ing (fake vocal performance) allowed. Bono was dressed in his signature black jacket and stylish colored glasses. In fact a total of seventeen live performances from top-rated performers filled the night with music! From Tony Bennett to Billy Joel, and Dave Matthews to 'N Sync... Music fills life with joy.

After the U2 performance was an initial joking of the high security in America as Jon Stewart walked through a faux metal detector. After asking for his shoes and whatnot, they striped Jon down to his briefs! Not a pretty sight i assure you :-)  . It was really no surprise as U2 won the first televised Grammy Award of the evening with their song "Stuck In A Moment You Can't Get Out Of". The reason why i say "the first televised Grammy Award" is that earlier in the day there were many other Grammy Awards given out for engineering and other musical accomplishments.


Best Pop Music Collaboration was next up and Crewe/Nolan's song "Lady Marmalade (Voulez-Vous Coucher Avec Moi)" from the movie soundtrack Moulin Rouge as performed by Christina Aguilera, Lil' Kim, Mya, Pink (and live with Patti Labelle). Again no real surprise as they all performed the song live just moments before the award was handed out. Best Rock Song Grammy Award went to Train for their song "Drops Of Jupiter", again it was just performed live moments before the Award was presented. Some of us old-timer true rockers may feel it is more a pop song than a rock song... but oh how things change over time. What was once underground music is now dance while hard core industrial becomes yet another type of pop music. Some of us miss groups like Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, The Doors and of course greats like Jimi Hendrix.

This year's program feels much like that of last year with U2 and Destiny's Child performing, Jon Stewart hosting and the same venue and stage employed for the show. As last year's show was incredible, my hopes of at least equaling 2001 (or beating it) are high. Those who presented  awards were usually critically acclaimed musicians/singers, though the choice of Pamela Andersen to give out an award seems puzzling at best (and a tasteless choice at worst). Regardless, all in all the presentation were (at times) witty and fun. Don Henley who has been, rightly, fighting the big bad RIAA (who represent the large music labels) for musician's rights was a sight for sore eyes. Don commented how he may not be the most popular person at the show. Judging by all the great work Don's lobbyist group has been doing, and the corrective measures they do to the big record labels who pseudo-enslave musicians, he is surely correct. After all, the Grammy Awards are attended quite well by big label executive and lawyers.

The performance of Billy Joel and Tony Bennett singing "New York State Of Mind" with a wonderful quartet consisting of piano, guitar, bass and drums was wonderful! Classy, timeless and immensely enjoyable. More like this please. Maybe not my favorite vocal quintet, though following the Joel/Bennett duet was 'N Sync's performance with Nelly "Girlfriend" began as an acoustic piece, then quickly went to a more pop feel. Big stage props are the norm for the Grammy Awards as five car-like pieces allowed each member of 'N Sync to stand atop of them while dancing and singing. Last year's Awards opened with singer Madonna who also featured a car in her performance of "Music".


Click here for page 3


Click here to see last year's show coverage.



































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