Like Black History Month or the XFL Championship Game, the Grammys roll into our lives every February - and don’t leave until all of their awards are given out in a hilarious spectacle of celebrities and music industry types talking about songs and having their fingers on the pulse of our corroded society’s musical tastes. With 95% accuracy, we previously predicted the winners of both the 2011 and 2012 Grammy awards. Now an attempt to match that percentage even though neither Jake nor Glenn have listened to any music in the past six years.
BEST TRADITIONAL R AND B PERFORMANCEAnita Baker - "Lately"
Beyonce - "Love on Top"
Melanie Fiona - "Wrong Side of a Love Song"
Gregory Porter - "Real Good Hands"
SWV - "If Only You Knew"
Jake: Melanie Fiona, I believe, was in the Spice Girls. The SWV song is from the late 90s. I do not think it is fair that it is included. This is the classic Grammy move of including a song, album or artist that is from a time gone by. This is like when Frank Ocean was nominated for “Best New Artist,” even though he is part of Odd Future. Nobody has ever heard of Gregory Porter. Not even his parents, because they died in 9/11. Beyonce winning is too on the nose. Anita Baker is 55 years old. She is holding down the young talent like Hulk Hogan did in mid-to-late 90s WCW. Melanie Fiona all the way.
Glenn: Gregory Porter’s performance of “Real Good Hands” seemed to me anything but traditional. He used a theremin, glockenspiel and triangle! Beyonce is famous but for all the wrong reasons (lipsynching every song she’s performed live since 2002) and Anita Baker still has a lot of detractors from her anti-gay actions in the 80s. I believe this race, like most, will come down to Melanie Fiona and SWV. You may remember “Weak” as SWV’s breakout hit during the 90s but you have never heard of Melanie Fiona - that is until Grammy night when she wins and commits a mass shooting on stage.
Jake’s Pick: Melanie Fiona, “Wrong Side of a Love Song”
Glenn’s Pick: Melanie Fiona, "Wrong Side of a Love Song"
BEST ALTERNATIVE ALBUMFiona Apple, The Idler Wheel Is Wiser Than the Driver of the Screw and Whipping Cords Will Serve You More Than Ropes Will Ever Do
Gotye, Making Mirrors
M83, Hurry Up, We're Dreaming
Tom Waits, Bad As Me
Jake: I have heard four of these albums. I would not listen to Gotye, even if it meant getting served with a lawsuit for punching a woman in the Kroger parking lot who was going the wrong way down the lane. The Bjork album was shitty. M83 was good, but I don’t think it has a shot. Fiona Apple’s album is fantastic. It is not too stripped down, although I am sure Glenn thinks otherwise. Even if Fiona Apple’s album is the best out of the bunch, I think Tom Waits album will win this category. Tom Waits deserves to win a Grammy, even if Grammys don’t mean shit.
Glenn: I have heard two of these albums, which is about two more than most of the other categories. Fiona Apple’s newest was wonderful but a little too stripped down even for me. Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming was a fantastic double album about the 2012 election between François Hollande and Nicolas Sarkozy. I couldn’t understand all the lyrics or why the Fifth French Republic hasn’t fallen yet, but it was easily one of the year’s best albums. I respect what Tom Waits and Bjork do, but I am not personally interested in their music. Making Mirrors by Goatse was an album with over 300 mirror references (an official record) and was a hit on college radio if your college was online. That’s the kind of shit the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences eats up!
Jake’s Pick: Tom Waits, Bad As Me
Glenn’s Pick: Gotye, Making Mirrors
BEST NEW ARTISTThe Alabama Shakes
Jake: Fun. are a Dexy Midnight Runners cover band, so I don’t know if we can truly consider them “new.” Yet, they are probably the best selling group on this list. Frank Ocean is a bisexual rapper who got into a fight with Chris Brown over a parking space. Chris Brown is a violent monster, much like America’s Dracula. The Lumineers have that one song you hear in car commercials, probably. I don’t watch many non-Geico commercials, because that’s all Hulu shows me. I haven’t ever heard of Hunter Hayes or The Alabama Shakes. I think Hunter Hayes is Sean Hayes’ brother. I’m picking Frank Ocean, because he had that album that people seemed to like a lot and he’s bisexual.
Glenn: All five of these groups or people are truly new. In fact, before 2012, I had never heard of the bands or the words that comprise their names. I never knew how to explain the concept of fun until this year. No one knows why Lumineers, a white supremacist ska band, were nominated but they have no chance to win. The Alabama Shakes were endorsed by Jack White, which definitely puts them as front runners. What of Fun. and Frank Ocean? Tonal, aesthetic and racial similarities aside, these bands are easily the most popular. Unfortunately the Grammys rarely award popular music, especially when it comes to Best New Artist.
Jake’s Pick: Frank Ocean
Glenn’s Pick: Hunter PS Hayes
ALBUM OF THE YEARThe Black Keys - El Camino
Fun. - Some Nights
Mumford & Sons - Babel
Frank Ocean - Channel Orange
Jack White - Blunderbuss
Jake: Is the Jack White album really this good? My favorite album of 2012 was Grimes’ Visions. Shockingly, it was not nominated. Mumford & Sons is awful. I hate them and I hate that people I know (like my dumb wife) like them. They are a bullshit band. The Black Keys opened for Sleater-Kinney when I saw them live. They are okay. Glenn probably likes them, so I have to hate them. My wife also likes Fun., so I have to hate them. Frank Ocean is good and was number 1 or 2 on a lot of year end lists. I’ll go for Frank Ocean since I hate everything else nominated. Why isn’t Bruce Springsteen nominated?
Glenn: If anyone ever has the unfortunate displeasure of marrying me, I will never insult his/her music choices, even if he/she like Grimes. Jack White is our generation’s Bruce Springsteen mixed with Ian Curtis and Leadbelly and his album has gotten much deserved acclaim. The Black Keys “sold out” when they started earning a living from their music instead of playing in shitty bars in shitty college towns to shitty young versions of myself. I hate that people buy their music and they can live a comfortable lifestyle. Great, altruistic bands like Fun. and Frank Ocean give away their music for free because they know it’s their obligation to the world that gave them their talent. But they won’t be rewarded for this generosity at this year’s Grammys. Album of the Year will Instead be given to the group whose members are all bisexual.
Jake’s Pick: Frank Ocean, Channel Orange
Glenn’s Pick: Mumford & Sons, Babel