‘The Taylor Swift Experience': Does a 25-Year-Old Pop Star Deserve a Museum Retrospective?

The line was huge, stretching a city block in downtown Los Angeles, and made up of fewer teens than expected. No Taylor Swift tees or handmade signs could be seen among the crowd, where Hobbit totes belonging to the middle-aged predominated.

I asked a pair at the front of the line, “Are you excited about the Taylor Swift exhibit?”

“No,” one replied. “We’re waiting to see Night at the Museum.” … Read More

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Let’s Be Real: The Grammys Have Always Relegated Beyoncé to the R&B Category

If you’re searching for proof of the Beygency’s hold over pop culture, look no further than the outrage that emerged Friday over Beyoncé’s six Grammy nominations this year. She was nominated for Album of the Year, Best R&B Performance, Best Urban Contemporary Album, Best R&B Song, Best Music Film and, um, Best Surround Sound Album, ending up tied with Sam Smith and Pharrell for the most nominations. It wasn’t enough. Maybe people have short attention spans, or perhaps it’s that Bey has reached new levels of cultural dominance in this last year, but the conversation surrounding Beyoncé’s perceived lack nominations hinted at a racial bias on the part of the Academy. … Read More

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Grammy Nominees 2015 Announced

Today, the Recording Academy is drawing out what is usually a live TV special into an all-day affair across… Read More

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CBS’s Unwatchable Anniversary Special Illustrates How Not to Celebrate 50 Years of the Beatles

Last weekend marked the 50th anniversary of the Beatles’ arrival in America and their initial, ratings-shattering performance on The Ed Sullivan Show. You may have heard about this anniversary. It’s been mentioned a few times! The half-centennial came to a head last night on CBS, which aired The Night That Changed America: A Grammy Salute to the Beatles, a two-and-a-half-hour mixture of documentary tribute and performance footage. The performances were reportedly culled from a four-hour concert the night after this year’s Grammys; one can only imagine what was left on the cutting room floor, considering the depressingly disastrous stuff that aired. … Read More

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Never Forget: The Grammys Aren’t Just Stupid — They’re Trolling Us

Yes, the Grammys were on last night, and hey, guess what? The internet spent all this morning arguing over this year’s controversies: how the hell did professional Nice Guy of OK Cupid Hip Hop Macklemore end up with Best Rap Album? Was that actually Daft Punk in the robot suit, or two random dudes off the street? And what was with Pharrell’s hat? This process plays itself out every year, which means the ceremony rates like crazy and the Grammy people laugh all the way to the bank. We generally attribute the awards’ lack of relevance to what’s actually going on in the world of the music to the fact that they’re voted for by clueless old white dudes. But come on, you think they’re not doing this on purpose? … Read More

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Behind-the-Scenes Photos of Daft Punk’s Grammys Set

Apart from the performances, one of the more interesting aspects of last night’s Grammy Awards show was the sets: Katy Perry’s weird goth/Lord of the Rings hybrid, Kacey Musgraves’ neon cacti, and particularly, the faux recording studio that accommodated Daft Punk et al. for their performance of “Get Lucky.” Well, some photos of the latter, designed by Daft Arts, surfaced on the internet this morning. According to set builder Jim Logiudice’s Tumblr, the recording booth was “patterned after the ‘Mother’ space craft control room from the movie Alien.” And if you were wondering, “the robots’ gold mirror mixing console actually worked and was played live.” The more you know! … Read More

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Ranking the 2014 Grammy Performances from Best to Worst

And so, the Grammys again. Since half the awards are given out before the ceremony even takes place, the abiding sources of interest these days are a) the outfits and b) the performances. As far as 2014 goes, the relevant points of interest on the former point were Pharrell’s hat (which, inevitably, already has its own Twitter account) and Kacey Musgraves’ curious dress. And the performances… well, as ever, they ranged from the almost sublime to the utterly ridiculous. Here’s our rundown of each any every one, starting with the best and working through to the ones that sent you to the fridge for several more… Read More

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A Selection of Entirely Serious Predictions About This Year’s Grammy Performance Controversies

God knows the performances get worse every year, so the most interesting thing about watching awards shows these days is seeing who’s going to do something controversial and/or generally boneheaded, whether in a deliberate attempt to court publicity, or just because they’re drunk and coked out of their minds. In entirely unrelated news, it’s the Grammys this weekend! We will be covering the event live on Sunday night — pray for our music editor — but in the meantime, here’s a series of completely, 100 percent serious and not at all facetious predictions as to what this year’s performers might do to get the fires of internet outrage started. … Read More

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