When the 2012 Grammy’s weren’t discussing the recent loss of pop vocalist Whitney Houston, there were a few gems of music history thrown in to last night’s ceremonies.
My personal favorite was the closing performance, seeing the likes of Dave Grohl, Paul McCartney and Bruce Springsteen all sharing the same stage to perform some classic Beatles tunes. That doesn’t happen every day, and it sure looked like the performers were having the time of their lives. McCartney had previously performed a new track of his titled “My Valentine”, which as LL Cool J put it, is poised to be a “new jazz standard”.
Bruno Mars, although I wouldn’t call myself a fan, brought the house down with his very 50’s/Frankie Valli/James Brown-esque performance of “Runaway Baby.” I was honestly thoroughly impressed.
Much to my delight, of course, Foo Fighters “Walked” away with 5 Grammy Awards last night. Not bad for 6 nominations, and it put Dave Grohl & Co up there with Santana and U2 as the top rock performers to win so many of the awards in one evening.
The Beach Boys even reunited to celebrate their 50th anniversary with a performance of “Good Vibrations”, alongside Maroon 5 and Foster the People.
There were a number of inspiring moments, but the one that stood out most for me was Grohl’s acceptance speech, which I have transcribed below:
“To me, this award means a lot because it shows that the human element of making music is what’s most important. Singing into the microphone and learning to play an instrument, and learning to do your craft – that’s the most important thing for people to do. It’s not about being perfect. It’s not about sounding absolutely correct. It’s not about what goes on in a computer. It’s about what goes on in here [heart], and it’s about what goes on in here [mind].”
This speech was immediately followed by applause and standing ovations, which was almost a little surprising considering the amount of the performers/audience that strive for perfect performances and rely on computerized beats, recordings, and auto-tune.
Grohl has been extremely outspoken in recent years about the state of rock music, and has publicly lamented the rise of computers taking over the writing and performance aspect of it. By Dave’s standards, everyone would learn to pick up a guitar, bass, drums, piano, or microphone rather than let a laptop do all the work. Their five-time Grammy-winning album Wasting Light was recorded in Dave’s own garage to reels of tape, and the only computers used in the process were the ones used by the band to send out Tweets and Facebook updates during the sessions.
Despite their views, Foo Fighters sure didn’t shun the electronic music community at the awards. They later shared the stage with Deadmau5, who recently remixed the Foo Fighters single “Rope” (included on the album as a bonus track), and Grohl could be seen in the photo pit in front of the Deadmau5 stage, bobbing his head to the performance.
Five Grammy awards are just another milestone in the string of successes the Foo Fighters have enjoyed throughout their career, and it certainly looks like they’re on the trajectory to becoming one of (if not the) biggest bands in the world. Few deserve it more, and I’m OK with that.
What did you think of the 2012 Grammy Awards? What were your favorite moments?