We’re in the midst of awards season and if your’e a little tired of watching movie stars get all fancied up and launch into political rants onstage, you’re in luck. This weekend it’s time to watch music stars do that. Yes, this Sunday is the 60th annual Grammy Awards, hosted by your favourite English late night host (and also the only English late night host), James Corden. Time to get pumped.
If you’re trying to decide if the Grammys are worth your time this year, here’s the short list of all the good stuff these awards are promising.
Congratulations to the 60th #GRAMMYs nominees!
— Recording Academy (@RecordingAcad) November 28, 2017
There are 84 categories at the Grammys (no wonder there are so many photos of stars holding fist-fulls of those golden statues) but everyone knows that’s not why we’re watching. We’re really here for the performances — the whole night is basically a televised concert of the Top 40 hits of the year (with intermittent celebrity cameos, commercials and Corden comments).
Confirmed performances include Lady Gaga, Rhianna with DJ Khaled, Sam Smith, Kesha, P!nk, U2, Kendrick Lamar, Bruno Mars with Cardi B, Childish Gambino, Chris Stapleton and Miley Cyrus with Elton John.
Noticeably absent is Jay Z, who leads in number of nominations with eight including ones for Album, Record and Song of the Year. He is also receiving the Grammy Salute to Industry Icons in a separate ceremony on Saturday. The rapper hasn’t been announced as a performer and “sources” have reportedly said that he is sitting this one out, though no reason was given. His reps have not confirmed either way. We’re keeping our fingers crossed for a surprise performance.
In case you just skimmed over the performers, Elton John is set to perform with Miley Cyrus. As weird as that sounds, we’re going to have to treasure up all the performances by John while we can. The rock icon announced Wednesday that after one last world tour, he will be retiring from performing. Maybe set the PVR for this one.
Also, if Miley Cyrus decides to twerk on the 70-year-old singer, you’re going to want to see it live, not after it’s been trending on Twitter for 12 hours.
The yellow brick road leads to… The #EltonFarewellTour!
— Elton John (@eltonofficial) January 24, 2018
This year is either the year of hip-hop or the year hip-hop gets brutally snubbed. The decrease in rock offerings this year coupled with the amazing rap albums of Jay Z, Kendrick Lamar and Childish Gambino should align the musical stars perfectly so that a real rap track can win Song of the Year for the first time in the Grammys’ 60-year history. They could also potentially sweep the general categories. Let’s sit back and watch history get made (or watch the Twitter outrage if it doesn’t).
What did you expect? Between Time’s Up, toxic immigration rhetoric and Donald Trump, there’s bound to be some politics talk at the Grammy Awards this year. While James Corden is probably the least political of the hosts on late night, he’s not above making digs at the U.S. president and there are a few built-in politics opportunities that aren’t even related to Time’s Up or Trump.
The past year has seen quite a bit of music-related tragedy. There was the terrorist bombing at Ariana Grande’s Manchester concert in May and the mass shooting at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas in August. There will be a musical tribute to honor the victims of those two tragedies as well as all victims and survivors of terrorism and gun violence around the world.
You can also expect there to be some talk about the late Tom Petty, whose autopsy revealed last week that he died of an accidental prescription drug overdose. Rather than downplay the OD in the media, the Petty family has taken the tragedy as an opportunity to raise awareness about the opioid epidemic.
Now, stop thinking about tragedy and instead, look back at Tina Turner and Beyonce singing together at the Grammys 10 years ago. Do you think Bey and Jay Z will bring the twins to the awards show this year?
A decade after, the biggest artists in music keep gracing the stage at Music’s Biggest Night! pic.twitter.com/uRic6MK5Ch
— Recording Academy (@RecordingAcad) January 20, 2018