I tuned in. I tried, lawd knows I tried.
But I couldn’t take it.
The opening ten minutes — that first flurry of medly-fied crap — told me plenty about myself, my culture, and the coming Apocalypse; I stayed as long as I could, and finally had to retire to the garage where I contemplated hanging myself.
I decided on a high-powered rifle and a spot on a nearby water tower.
Before I “go”, I want to share what I learned:
• I’m a dinosaur.
• The Grammy TV sound engineer is apparently deaf.
• Decent sound mixing doesn’t really matter to tone-deaf motards who think some black kid spinning on the floor on his back is art. (Hasn’t that ‘break-dancing’ shit been out for like… decades?)
• Most of the “new” ‘R&B’ and ‘Urban’ and ‘Hip-Hop’ is just regurgitated DISCO without the record burnings.
• Our entire culture is created for — and marketed to — an illiterate 14 year old who makes $100,000 a year.
• Post-post modernism means that not only “anything goes” — and not only that “it’s been done” — but that “Anything goes; it’s been done MANY TIMES already, and way better!”
• There are lots of relatively talented people who can sing on key, but there are very few with any amount of soul — or who know how to pick a ‘great song.’
• As a matter of fact, Jennifer Lopez showed that not only is she NOT Selena, but when she has to do more than screech some shitty rap song, ie is forced to sing some melodic ballad, then she hovers ever so close to singing off key. J. Lo, stay in the studio, babe, where they can juice your voice. PS: More flesh, fewer melodies.
• Queen Latifa: Ditto. And Rod Stewart called; he said he recommends saving the ‘classic songs’ albums until your career is at a dead end — oh, and it’s been done.
• (Ella Fitzgerald, Etta James, where are ya when we need ya?!)
• Hey, Gwen Stefani – Madonna called and she wants her act, her costumes, her persona, and her friggin’ Olive Oyl voice back.
• Hey, lead singer in Green Day: that guy in “The Cure” called and he wants his eye makeup back.
• Hey, Maroon 5, about 100 bands from the mid-1980s called, and they want EVERYTHING back.
• The highlight of the (truncated) evening — and an explicit demo of my dinosaurness AND my post-post modern theory: a has-been rock band from the 60s/70s played with more soul than all the young poseurs on the bill put together; and they showed that 30 years later, a few great songs/performances have become part of (at least a few) generations collective consciousness to the point that one not only was almost moved to tears at the sound of the first eight notes of “Sweet Home Alabama” — but one knew instinctively to “turn it up” because great songs and performances tend to become hard-wired into one’s soul.
That is if one has a soul.
• For all the goofy, “I’m trying hard to be creative” costumes — the only one that had any style, originality, and will be remembered years hence without specifically dating the wearer: Dickie Betts’ classic old hippie/indian lore blue jeans and cowboy boots. In just a few years, everybody else who appeared on the 2005 Grammys is going to look like they raided the costume department from the 1960s TV “StarTrek”.
• U2 is the most boring, overrated, blowhard band in rock history.
• Bono’s ‘cowboy’ hat was the kind German tourists buy at Wal-Mart when they visit Texas.
I’m sure there are more, but I tuned out after an hour or so.
And right now, I’m listening to a 75 year old recording of Jelly Roll Morton in order to cleanse out my eardrums, readjust my brain, and wash the manufactured cultural shit from my tarnished soul.
Then I’m headin’ for the tower — and taking along an IPOD filled with REAL music — from real musicians who play real instruments, and real singers who sing real songs.
Love ya, America, mean it!