I don’t watch the Grammys. Never have, never will. (Unless of course I’m up for one. Which will be never.)
Because back in the day they never saw fit to pay attention to and honor the music I love, so I feel it’s only fair I pay no attention to them, and I feel so strongly about it that I once turned down a chance to write liner notes and thus get into NARAS and be able to vote, just because I hated the system so much. (Changing the system from within is a nice sentiment, to be sure, but it very seldom works, and sleeping with the enemy, however noble your purpose might be, is a real soul-killer.)
So the Grammys have never honored real, cutting-edge, Sixties rocknroll. No, they have historically preferred to give the little gold phonographs to their idea of cutting edge: hello, Grammys for 1967, year of the first Doors album and “Surrealistic Pillow” and “Disraeli Gears” and “Are You Experienced” and
“Axis: Bold as Love.” Check THIS out…Record of the Year
“Up, Up and Away,” 5th DimensionAlbum of the Year
Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, The Beatles (Capitol)Song of the Year
“Up, Up and Away,” Jimmy L. Webb, songwriterBest New Artist
Bobbie GentryBest Vocal Performance, Male
“By the Time I Get to Phoenix,” Glen CampbellBest Vocal Performance, Female
“Ode to Billie Joe,” Bobbie GentryBest Performance By a Vocal Group (Two to Six Persons)
“Up, Up and Away,” 5th DimensionBest Performance By a Chorus (Seven or More Persons)
“Up, Up and Away,” Johnny Mann SingersBest Contemporary Single
“Up, Up and Away,” 5th DimensionBest Contemporary Album
Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, The Beatles (Capitol)Best Contemporary Male Solo Vocal Performance
“By the Time I Get to Phoenix,” Glen CampbellBest Contemporary Female Solo Vocal Performance
“Ode to Billie Joe,” Bobbie GentryBest Contemporary Group Performance, Vocal or Instrumental
“Up, Up and Away,” 5th Dimension
SIX Grammys for that piece of utter flufftrash “Up, Up and Away!” Three for mopey little Bobbie Gentry! Two for musical gelding Glen Campbell! My gorge, she is a-rising…
And the following four years, the giant and blazing heart of the most creative music that ever lived, were just as vomitous. Nothing for the Stones, the Doors, the Who, the Airplane, Cream, the Dead. Though “Sgt. Pepper” did squeak in…
So now the Grammys are handing out “honorary” awards, Lifetime Achievement Awards, and last night the Doors got one. Which is basically saying Yeah, we didn’t think you were good enough to win one of these babies when you were actually working
, but hey, Dwhores, you're safely irrelevant now, so we’ll just lob you this sop in your retirement golden years, now that you haven’t done anything dangerously creative for almost four decades and all you want to do now (looking at YOU, Ray and Robby) is sit back and peddle your songs for diaper or car TV spots.
Of the four band members, only blank-faced Robby Krieger was present, the insufferable Ray and the estimable John apparently still being at daggers drawn. (Thank all gods the little gopher boy Sugerman, being dead, can no longer pollute even these
loathsome proceedings with his presence…)
And the blither did make reference to Jim as the “lead shaman” of the group. WhatEVAH. No word on where he
was on the night, but you can damn well bet it wasn’t anywhere near the ceremony.
(I received all this information from MDF Steve, by the way, since I was watching not the Grammys but “POTC2: Dead Man’s Chest” for the thousandth time, and my state was the more gracious for it…)
But these days music is all about “product.” (Well, it was back then, too, of course; but at least there was the above-mentioned substance to balance it out). With a few shining exceptions (the magnificent Dixie Chicks, who SO rock in all senses of the word; Springsteen; Dylan; even the mangy old Police back again), the stuff music “fans” want to see today is the purest plastic and the people who “play” and “sing” it can’t do either of those without lip-synching or an augmented backup track—since they can neither, you guessed, sing or play like REAL ARTISTS.
Enough. Going to listen to Cream, I think, now, to get the taste of bogus out of my musical mouth.
Oh, and if you have to call yourself
"John Legend," chances are pretty good you're not one. And never will be.