Ariana Grande did not attend the Grammys, but that did not stop her from being in the middle of the conversation about and around the ceremony.
On Friday he released an album, "Thank U, Next", and a video for a new single, "Break Up With Your Girlfriend, I'm Bored." And all through Sunday, he found several ways, some of them very serious, A little mean – to stay ahead of the online discussion. When she won the best pop vocal album, for "Sweetener," she he wrote on Twitter"I try not to put too much weight on these things," acknowledging, "this is wild and beautiful." He appeared in a psychedelicly disorienting commercial for Apple's Memoji, with an animated head of Grande playing "7 Rings."
When Cardi B won the best rap album, Grande fired a couple of frustrated tweets; Her ex-boyfriend, Mac Miller, who died last year, was nominated. (Later he apologized and deleted all the tweets). And he posted several pictures of her with the custom Zac Posen dress he was going to wear during the ceremony.
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This was not the Grammy experience that Big was planning to have. Until a couple of days ago, I was scheduled to act in the broadcast, a plan that imploded in a spectacular way.
After the show producer Ken Ehrlich said in an interview that Big no longer showed up because "I felt it was too late for her to get something together," answered Big with quills.
"I've kept my mouth shut, but now you're lying about me", Big he wrote on Twitter. "I can organize a performance during the night and you know it, Ken, it was when my creativity and self-expression were stifled by you, that I decided not to attend."
And so, on the night of the Grammys, all the noise that Grande generated was heard everywhere except the actual broadcast, which made her one of the many artists who made loud noises without even putting one foot in the Staples Center .
This year's ceremony was perhaps so remarkable for who did not show up: Kendrick Lamar, Childish Gambino (who won four awards, including the album and song of the year for "This Is America"), Taylor Swift, as who did it . And also because of the way he treated several of his biggest winners, including Drake, cutting his speeches abruptly. (This, in a transmission in which only nine prizes were awarded in more than three and a half hours).
The[[See the complete list of winners.]
So perhaps the best place to communicate a message without restrictions during the Grammys is anywhere other than the actual ceremony. The program still conceives itself as a linear television experience, when in fact its consumption, and especially the stars on which it is based, is wild, woolly and omnidirectional.
Consider 21 Savage, nominated for two awards for his role in "Rockstar" by Post Malone, but was unable to attend due to his Detention by Immigration and Customs Control last week. When Post Malone showed up, he did not mention his collaborator, which provoked a violent reaction online. (Finally, a photo of him was circulated with a Savage 21 T-shirt under his attire). Kei Henderson, one of the 21 managers of Savage, he wrote on Twitter that she and others "tried to solidify Savage's recognition during the 'Rockstar' show, it just did not work out that way." The only person who mentioned 21 Savage during the broadcast was Ludwig Göransson, the contributor to Childish Gambino. The lack of other recognition was evident.
Some stars used the Grammy window to announce their other efforts. Gambino infantil appeared in a live Announcement for Google Playmoji in which he danced next to an avatar of himself. Travis Scott had one of the most energetic performances of the show, but he also launched a new sneaker during the ceremony. Taylor Swift, who was nominated once this year, posted a photo on Instagram of the Baftas in London. (Last year, the video for "The Middle", the collaboration of Zedd, Maren Morris and Gray, made its debut during the Grammy as part of a Target ad campaign, this year it was nominated for the album and song of the year. The side road works.)
While many stars sought a way to avoid the Grammy transmission channel, others used it to their full potential. Cardi B, who often seems to be the only artist in any field who still experiences genuine shock and gratitude, delivered an emotional speech after winning the best rap album. Brandi Carlile's performance of "The Joke" was incredibly good, and Alicia Keys' accommodation had several intriguing moments. After some brutally boring Grammys last year that also profoundly marginalized women, it was comforting that most of the highlights of this year came from female artists.
More often, however, when the Grammy had the opportunity to celebrate one of the most prominent pop stars, he dropped the ball. The speeches of almost all the most important winners, Kacey Musgraves, Cardi B, Dua Lipa, were interrupted.
In no case was this more outrageous than with Drake, the most popular artist who won a Grammy this year. Drake was offered a space for presentations, but he rejected it (as did Lamar and Childish Gambino). Then, when he appeared on stage after being announced as the winner of the best rap song, it was a real surprise.
The[[Never miss a pop music story: Receive our weekly newsletter, Louder.] Although his appearance was magnanimous, especially after his criticisms before the Grammys, his speech was anything but. He took a look at his previous Grammy-winning rap song for "Hotline Bling," which is not (really) a rap song. He drew attention to the fact that those who vote for the Grammys may not be the best equipped to "understand, you know, what a mixed-race Canadian boy has to say, or a Spanish girl from New York, or any other person". , or a brother from Houston, "recognizing Cardi B and Travis Scott.
Although his appearance was magnanimous, especially after his criticisms before the Grammys, his speech was anything but. He took a look at his previous Grammy-winning rap song for "Hotline Bling," which is not (really) a rap song. He drew attention to the fact that those who vote for the Grammys may not be the best equipped to "understand, you know, what a mixed-race Canadian boy has to say, or a Spanish girl from New York, or any other person". , or a brother from Houston, "recognizing Cardi B and Travis Scott.
And then, the real humdinger. "Look, if there are people who have regular jobs that are going out in the rain, in the snow, spending their hard-earned money to buy tickets to attend their shows, they do not need this here, I promise. You've already won."
"But," Drake continued.
The Grammys, however, did not continue with him. The camera went back to a general plane, and then the program quickly went to the commercial. (A representative of the program later said that the producers confused Drake's pause with the end of his comments).
The Grammys made room for a bunch of time absorbers: the karaoke Alicia Keys; countless tributes; a long montage dedicated to the besieged leader of the Recording Academy, Neil Portnow. However, it is the stubborn curse of the program that is willing to cut the most popular and significant pop artist in the knees to preserve their sense of personal importance, an absurd and careless choice. It is the same arrogance that allows Ariana Grande to see the Grammy from the sofa instead of being on stage, and that ensures that the Grammy will continue to be a site of protest, dissension and boredom in the coming years, waiting for Changes in Leadership and attitude.
After the ceremony, Drake published a photo of the victory envelope that bears his name, and added the legend "Too gross for television". Now more than ever, it's a good way to be.