On John Mayer’s “Stop This Train”: “This from one of the best albums of all time. This is a super deep song about stopping the train, the train being time. Metaphor for time and wanting to stay young forever. He got a crazy line at the end of the song about his father who tells him, ‘When you get older man, you’re not going to wanna… you know, you just kind of want it all to end.’ It’s a deep song.”
7:00 Barbara Streisand is going to be here? Why?
LL Cool J introduces this tribute to Aretha Franklin, because he has won a Grammy, is black, and also on a CBS show. Kate: Wouldn’t it have been awesome is LL hadn’t spelled RESPECT correctly during his intro? A girl can dream. Whatever, the tribute to Aretha is great. I cried.
KB: This is the greatest group of people ever! They include Jennifer Hudson, Martina McBride, Florence without her Machine, Yolanda Adams (who everyone was like “Gigga what?!” but is a Gospel singer, and Christina Aguilera, who appears to be in front of a microphone stand made of anal beads. But it’s all good; this is an amazing medley and why we watch the Grammys. It will all be downhill from here (Note: It mostly was).
KB: They are paying tribute to Aretha with their crazy outfits. Jessie: But no crazy hats.
“Sisters Are Doin’ It For Themselves!” It would be great if they brought Annie Lennox out right now but they won’t.
I wish I was watching The First Wives Club right now. Aretha comes on in a prerecorded video to thank everyone for “the flowers, beautiful flowers.”
Aretha’s touching moment and a lovely performance was swiftly ruined by this ad: “This Valentine’s Day, why give a diamond when you can give the family jewels?”
7:21 It is literally all downhill from here now. We all plan to now go get drunk by ourselves in separate bars because Train just won for “Hey Soul Sister.” They do seem to show a little self-awareness in their acceptance speeches, thanking “Justin Bieber for not being a duo or group” and some dude at the record label “who gave us another chance.” They are thankfully drowned out by some sort of organ music?
Ricky Martin shows up, wearing the aforementioned silver pants. Jessie: We can all eat our words, they are jeans, Ricky Martin. He pronounces Lady Gaga’s name “Ga Ga.”
It appears this egg is maybe more of a cocoon? She sounds amazing live, as per the usual, and has a lovely set of interpretive dancers.
Jessie: Yea she’s whipping her hair!
She also has some sort of interesting sidestep dance going on? And then serenades us with a little organ interlude, perhaps the theme of the night. Jessie: Guys, Bach is with us at the Grammys. (BTW, Kate is related to him, itsnobigdeal.
Sean: She can come in an egg anytime she wants.
7:33 I just viscerally reacted to Blake what’s his last name, who is married to Miranda Lambert. He says some inappropriate thing that Jessie thinks “means I was inside of her 20 minutes ago. Oh wait they are married!” We then have a conversation about how funny it was when Angelina Jolie and Billy Bob Thorton did that at some awards show in the limo on the way there.
Wake me up in 10 minutes, she’s performing. There’s some sort of photo montage in the background we’re mostly unimpressed with, but Jessie points out that “They’re probably Iraq veterans, assholes.”
KB: Because they’re country. Except here’s the thing, I think she’s ugly, and that’s my problem with her.
7:38 Lenny Kravitz looks good. I hope they cut to Nicole Kidman (Note: They did not. How come at every awards show, when Jennifer Aniston is presenting, they show Angelina placidly staring at the stage, but they can’t remind us of those weird days when Nicole and Lenny were a couple?)
7:49 “Music always needs new stars,” Ryan Seacrest tells us. With that, we get B.o.B wearing a monocle! A monocle! My Mom used to joke that I would have to get one because my eyes were such different prescription but they totally evened out so HAH TAKE THAT MOTHER. He drops it off when he sings “ended up with none.” None more the monocle.
And Bruno Mars gets his performance in Black and White. He’s done an old-school rendition of “Grenade” that’s a little pitchy, especially at the end, but super cool. Cyndi Lauper is pleased.
7:59 At least Miranda Lambert thanked the songwriters and kept it short when she won.
“Up next: Justin Bieber and his mentor Usher take the stage.”
I have counted 3 Taylor Swift commercials thus far. Go home Taylor.
8:06 J. Biebz is singing “Baby” but it sounds like he’s singing “Bieber Bieber Bieberrrr.” I totally would buy a conspiracy theory arguing that he’s merely promoting a cultish agenda. The Pinkett-Smith’s are beaming as Jayden joins him on stage, because I guess Jayden redid The Karate Kid and Justin provided vocals.
Sean: This is like Kidz Bop
Jessie: There are not enough ways for you to love me, Usher.
8:14 Muse wins, so Christina is happy, and one of them “would like to give a shoutout to my beautiful pregnant girlfriend over there.” We get it dude: You knocked her up. Congrats.
8:21 This is so awkward that Best Pop Vocal is being introduced by Selena Gomez. KB points out that what if Justin wins? Are they going to make-out? CBS is sure hoping so.
We’ll never know the beginning of what Gaga said because these censors are just being very loose with bleeping, but thank god Justin Bieber didn’t win.
I have a theory that smiling at all times in required in the Pinkett-Smith household. They are always beaming. Gaga says that when writing this track she “imagined whitney houston was singing this because I wasn’t brave enough.” I want a Whitney response, and ASAP.
CBS interrupts the show with fucking David Letterman doing one of his patented not funny Top 10 lists. This cross promotion is ridiculous.
The Avery Brothers come on, finally giving us something not remotely Top 40. They sing to us, “If youre loved by someone you’re never rejected.”
8:30 We finally get the promised Bob Dylan performance, which of course everyone hates because he doesn’t sounds like he used to, but can I point out that he’s never been the most consistent. He sings “Maggie’s Farm” in some lovely sneakers, with Mumford & Sons, which means that MC’s happy. I like his special harmonica mic. Neil Young stands up and claps at the end, while J. Lo looks bored and pissed. Stars: They never really surprise you.
Ad for the Wisconsin Dells tells us that “after you vacation in the Waterpark Capital of the world, you’ll never look at water the same way again.” I am actually dying to go.
8:43 Lady Antebellum performs “Need You Now” which is a very truthful song about being drunk late at night and missing someone, but that doesn’t make it good.
Miley Cyrus and the Kings of Leon are presenting Best Country Album together. Why not. Kings of Leon then win, and we see them freaking out backstage. It would have been cooler, if a lot meaner, to see them losing.
8:47 Cee-Lo, Gweneth Paltrow, and the Muppets? What could be better? Group consensus is that these are definitely Jim Henson lite, or the poorman’s Muppets, but a little research proves that they are indeed his work.
They just bleeped the puppets singing the N word. That’s a first.
Gweneth does a very convincing “Ooh I really hate your ass right now!” Her shoes are amazing. We get into an argument about how much choice celebrities have when picking out their clothes with a stylist. If The Rachel Zoe Project is anything to go off of, the stylists just do the heavy lifting.
Cee-Lo, who probs didn’t have a stylist for his outfit, looks like a “Cher abominable snowman” according to Jessie.
8:57 Katy Perry performs. One lone hand in the audience keeps reaching out to her, it’s beautiful.
The backdrop is images of KP’s wedding to Russell Brand. KB sceams “Yes!” Katy Perry tells us that “Teenage Dream” “goes out to all the Valentine lovers.” She mimes the line “one touch” scandalously. And then we see Nicole Kidman singing along!
KB asks: Kidman or Paltrow: who rehabbed their image better?
Jessie: Katy’s control is awful. Look how she’s not belting the high notes.
9:02 John Mayer, Norah Jones and Keith Urban performing “Jolene” in honor of Dolly Parton, who received a Lifetime Achievement award tonight. Awesome. John wisely says that he’s “going to stick to the script.” Here’s a not-horrible version of it:
And then that beautiful performance was followed by yet another win for “Need You Now.” Doesn’t anyone notice that this song is awful?
9:12 Kate: Is Eminem wearing a beeper?
KB: Probably because those were popularized the last time he was at the Grammys. Burn.
He said fuck and they didn’t catch it! Take that, censors. I wonder who will literally or figuratively pay for that.
Is that Evanescence with him? Christina says it’s this girl who was in another song with Fort Minor, that band started by that guy in Linkin Park. They’re singing a new song “I Need A Doctor”, and it’s with Dr. Dre. Oh I get it!
Jessie: Dre is Eminem’s Usher to Bieber.
9:21 Shock on the Biebz face when Esperanza Spalding won was crazy. The fact that no one in this category is a new artist seems to bother no one. Immediately after the win, it appears that crazed Bieber fans wreaked havoc to Spalding’s Wikipedia page, which is unfortunate, because she’s incredibly talented.
9:32 It’s time for the people who died this year. Fun as usual.
9:34 KB: Who is wearing a cape? Oh, Mick Jagger, duh.
Jessie: I want a count of how many times his name has been rhymed with Swagger. Off the top of my head it’s 2, but I bet it’s much more.
KB: He is wearing sneakers.
Kate: I wondered about the shoes; they look Nike.
9:45 Kris Kristofferson (who looks remarkably like Jeff Bridges, but maybe that’s because I watched The Big Lebowski today) introduces Barbara Streisand by saying “She’s sweetened our lives…like the music did our life.”
Kate: This is so boring.
Christina: Can we fast-forward please?
Jessie: It’s sad because I was like, wait, can we?
Please note that here have been like two awards.
9:50 Will.i.am introduces the award for Best Rap Album, but seems to not realize that “since the inception of this award” is pretty meaningless as it is only a few years old.
Eminem wins! And is unemotional as usual.
Finally! Beyonce! KB: Why you gotta playa hate. (Note: I have no idea why she said this. The growler was finished awhile before).
Apparently they are BFFLs, according to KB and some People magazine article quoting an anonymous and bullshit source she read like six months ago.
9:58 I like that the song choice that is played as “Puff Daddy” walks up is “I Need A Girl.” His teeth look weird. Debate is had over why he is introduced as Puff Daddy, and it is settled that that’s probably the name he won his Grammys in.
Rihanna and Drake perform in front of a timber pile. Rihanna brings out the Rude Boy dance, thank god. I really wish she and Drake would reconcile as more than just collaborators. I never realized that in “What’s My Name” the exact lyrics are “Say my name, say my name — wear it out.”
10:02 Jenny from the Block has to remind us that she’s married to Marc Anthony. They really make me appreciate couples who are rarely seen together.
“The song otherwise known as ‘Forget You'” is nominated. Someone had a field day with that one.
LADY ANTEBELLUM WINS AGAIN. They are shaking their heads in disbelief. Please shake your heads Lady Antebellum, we at home are as well. BOORRRRRINNGG.
The next episode of Criminal Minds is about a life coach that turns deadly. I may watch this.
10:11 Jason Segel is like “Why am I here introducing Arcade Fire? Oh wait I’m on How I Met Your Mother.
10:20 KB gets very upset about the Chrysler commercial because of their 90 spot during the Super Bowl that was paid for with taxpayer dollars that they have Chrysler has not paid back from the bailout thankyouverymuch.
Barbara and Kris Kristofferson, together at last!
What if Katy Perry won album of the year?! I wonder what Bob Dylan would think/say/emote?
Oh but we never have to worry because Arcade Fire wins for “The Suburbs”, a place that no one who listens to them ever wants to go back to.
That was perhaps the worst display of awards handed out I’ve seen in my young life. To make yourself feel better/worse about what crap it all is, read this Slate article that KB could not stop talking about as we whined about the injustice about it all about, well, the injustice of it all. And stay tuned for a short breakdown of artists that won awards and that we should be excited about.
5:35 The first thing we see is Gaga. Giuliana tells us that “She is genius. The commitment that it takes to be in that womb, in an egg, in this egg.” I’ve got a new name catchphrase for Giuliana Rancic: Almost rancid, but not quite.
Ryan Seacrest tells us that Lady Gaga was inside that thing “for 3 hours getting ready with just her Blackberry.” Doesn’t he know you can do anything on that thing? Also that this is the closest look we’ll get of Gaga before she’s onstage “breaking her shell.”
Sean: I wanted to see what Gaga would be wearing, not what she’d stuff herself in.
5:38 LL Cool J is wearing the same thing he wore at whatever was the last award show we watched.
5:39 Ellie Jackson! La Roux. Jessie: I have sexual fantasies about you.
5:41 Ciara is holding her vagina in for the Glam Cam 360. She looks like the infamous J.Lo from 10 years ago.
5:43 Ryan: I’m standing here with an old friend, Jennifer Hudson. Get it get it? Because she was on American Idol and he hosts it. Of course they talk about the weight and Weight Watchers, but the mic wasn’t on her mouth when she plugged it so MISSED OPPORTUNITY.
Jessie: KB and I were worried about award show fatigue, but this is a new cast of characters.
5:48 Some predicatable Demi Lavato/Selena Gomez confusion occurs. They’re asking the one who isn’t in rehab and is dating Justin Bieber about his movie. She sounds incredibly bored about everything.
Oh but Drake comes to save the day! He says, “I feel great. I’m here with my mother.” Sean replies, “I just want to reach out and touch a brother.”
Whatever you think about Maroon 5, Adam Levine is hot and “Misery” is catchy so there.
5:55 It’s sad when the only think anyone can discuss is Lady Gaga. Her intro is now being referred to as a “Placenta-Egg thing.”
5:58 Wait is Valentine’s Day tomorrow? I had no idea.
6:00 John oh John. Christina: He looks like he’s trying to be Johnny Depp. I refuse to post a photo because I try to only speak well of him. Bruno Mars, however, has great hair. Later he does a great 360 cam with his “rat pack.”
Paramore is going to Brazil, so Giuliana tells them that “Brazil is a sexy sexy place.” Giuliana my love, pray tell: What happened to you in Brazil?
B.OB. has also brought his Mom. His blazer and scarf look great.
Kim! You look so Vegas! And oh, do you have a big ass? Thanks for reminding us!
Jessie: Her boobs are like a zip code.
KB: OMG it’s Rob! (Note here that she squealed also).
Sean: Is he the one with a perpetual boner in that episode?
6:11 Ricky Martin is wearing silver pleather pants. Just because you’re out now doesn’t mean you can wear hideous things. He tells us that 1999 “was a really intense evening for me.” As he speaks, the backdrop shows us Mya, who appears to be dating a Keanu Reeves look-alike?
6:19 I can’t tell the difference between Lady Antebellum and Paramore. Oh wait, that’s ’cause they both suck.
6:22 Reebok Easy Tone reminds me yet again that I do like to dance around in my underwear with my gal pals, so while I’m at it, why not make it Easy Tone?
Willow Smith! She says that hearing her song on the radio “is like, I’m changing peoples lives.” She is immodest in a way that only young individuals can be and still continue to appear charming. She also gestures just like her Dad. Her brother Jayden is performing with Justin Bieber, and though he was nervous, she “was like, aww you’ll be fine.” She’s told that Miley Cyrus is right behind her, but does not give a shit about Miley. Good for you girl.
Jessie: Miley’s boobs looks like a weird tumor. I’m clutching mine in defensiveness.
Sean: She looks too much like a platypus. Jessie: As opposed to striking the right balance of platypus-lookingness?
Miley says, “I’m very heavy”, referring to her jewelry. Unfortunately, we see that, but in another way.
6:28 Bieber arrives, wearing an ill-fitted suit. Sean: Why are you waddling? Because he took a shit in his diaper.
Kate: This whole show is Glee and American Idol.
There is a weird run-in with power couples Nicole and Keith vs. J.Lo and anthony. Who would win in a duel? Discuss.
6:32 Diddy looks fat. Sean: Maybe your TV just puts 10 lbs on people. And in the case of Miley Cyrus, about 30. Kate: At least his hair looks good.
Katy Perry brought her 90-year-old Grandmother with a bedazzled cane here to the Grammys for her birthday. Russell preens and looks bored in the background as he checks out the scene. He looks so old, like the crypt keeper, which is weird, because next to Nana he should look fresh. Armani made the outfits for the entire family. That did not stop Katy from looking like this:
6:38 Look at Justin saying hayyy to Rihanna’s breasts. Motorboating!
People are literally cheering at Rihanna in pipe cleaners. Ryan Seacrest asks her “when did he [Gautier] reveal to you it was going to be so revealing?” Rihanna keeps doing a lot of sexy shimmys to adjust her dress.
Where is Beyonce?! This Red Carpet has mourned for her and whatever fishtail dress she was going to wear.
Willow Smith has a purse that looks like a mobile with a phone dangling from it.
Where is Gwenny? We have 15 minutes people, get to it!
6:50 Jamie Foxx has a harem with him.
Lea Michele finally shows up, suspiciously separate from her Glee costars. KB points out that she predicted Lea would show up 5 minutes before the show started, and she’s only 5 minutes off. To make up for it, Lea does the best smirk/hair brush of her face I have ever seen. I wish I had a gif of that. Let’s make do with some sexy-face:
Seal is all about Heidi Klum’s feet, which, like the rest of her, feature a lot of gold (toenail polish). Klum tells us that “the trick is to stay naked.” I don’t know what context that is in. Ryan Seacrest hits Seal on the head with a microphone by accident.
And on that clutzy note, onto the real deal, which will feature few awards and lots of performances.