Article by Carlos Po
This year’s Grammy Awards ceremony was one filled with its fair share of surprises and fulfilled predictions.
British artist Sam Smith was the big winner that night for his hit single “Stay With Me.” His album In The Lonely Hour has managed to return to the top of the British album charts on Sunday. At 22-years old, Smith is the second-youngest person to have ever received nominations in all of the “Big Four” categories: Best New Artist, Album of the Year, Record of the Year and Song Of The Year. Backstage he told senior music writer Brian Mansfield that he was excited to show off his awards to the man who inspired his melancholic music and added, “I’ll be seeing him soon. So I can let him touch the Grammys. Once.” He later revealed the mystery man as being one of his three managers, Elvin Smith, a married music executive and the unrequited love who inspired Smith’s mournful music.
A big surprise that night was niche alternative rock artist Beck’s big win of Album of the Year with his album Morning Phase which meant beating out crowd favorites like Sam Smith, Beyonce, Pharrell Williams, and Ed Sheeran. His dark horse victory was a surprise to everyone, including Beck himself. The singer,songwriter and producer has had a small but dedicated fanbase since the 1990s around when his hit single “Loser” was released. While it has since achieved cultural legend status, Beck has become relatively underground in recent years when compared to other Grammy favorites this year, most of whom can be regularly be heard playing on the radio. “It would be a surprise with this record, honestly,” he told Billboard before the ceremony, making Beck a very surprised musician this awards season. History almost repeated itself when rapper Kanye West, famous for having rudely interrupted Taylor Swift at the 2009 MTV awards, almost interrupted Beck during his acceptance speech at this year’s Grammys.
The surprise victory for Beck and his fanbase was coupled with surprise disappointment for Beyonce and hers as her self-titled album lost out to Beck’s Morning Phase. However, that did not stop the 33-year old pop sensation from making a grand comeback a week later at a Grammy tribute concert for fallen musician Stevie Wonder where she performed an amazing rendition of “Fingertips” which had been his first #1 hit on the Billboard Top 100. She then sang two more songs by Wonder, “Master Blaster” and Higher Ground”, with fellow musicians Gary Clark and Ed Sheeran respectively. However, Beyonce certainly didn’t walk out of the ceremony empty-handed having been the second biggest winner that night. Wife and husband, famous rapper Jay-Z, took home the Grammy award for Best R&B Performance and performed a live duet of her song “Drunk in Love.” She added a shout-out to her daughter Blue Ivy, who was in the audience.
Overall, this Grammy season had plenty of surprise victories and surprise losses. With amazing performances from talented musicians, it was certainly a memorable ceremony.