Sunday, February 20, 2011

Hip-Hop Marketing Guru Blasts Grammys Over Bieber slight

Hip-hop marketing expert Steve Stoute took to the New York Times over the weekend to blast the Grammys for slighting artists like Justin Bieber. He also spoke out against recent losses by Kanye West and Eminem.

In a full-page ad in the newspaper, Stoute wrote "I have come to the end that the Grammy Awards have clearly lost touch with modern popular culture."

He added, "The awards show has become a series of insincerity and disagreement, leaving me to question why any contemporary popular artist would even participate."

About Bieber, Stoute wrote, "How is it that Justin Bieber, an artist that defines what it means to be a modern artist, did not win Best New Artist?" Justin Bieber lost the Best New Artist Grammy to Esperanza Spalding.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Neil Young wins first Grammy for music

A year after he won the first Grammy of his career, eclectic rocker Neil Young dual his tally on Sunday. The win marked the first recognition for his musical skills, since last year's honor was for his work as an art director on the wrapping of a boxed set.

This time he won a statue in the best rock song category for "Angry World," a tune from his album "Le Noise."

"This is my first Grammy for music, and it's valued greatly," Young said.
He lost another race to Paul McCartney, and remains in argument for best rock album.

Young, now 65, is often nominated 11 times since 2006 alone but his musicianship evidently was not forceful enough for Grammy voters, who now number about 12,000 music industry professionals.

Young, in turn, has made no secret of his scorn for the Grammys, declaring that he was "not Grammy material" in a 1987 interview told in the authorized biography "Shakey." But his look at both this year's and last year's events appears to point to a softening of his approach.

The Canadian singer-songwriter has confounded fans over the past 40 years with an idiosyncratic output spanning folk, rock, grime, soul and country. "Le Noise," his 31st studio let go since 1969, debuted at No. 2 on the Canadian albums chart and at No. 14 in the United States.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Black Eyed Peas underwhelm at halftime

On second consideration, maybe Escort should have been the headliner for the Super Bowl halftime show.
The superstar had only a brief cameo in the glass case, but his tightly choreographed moves and acrobatics marked the brief exciting moment of a surprisingly stale medley from the normally frantic headliners, the Black Eyed Peas.

The Super Bowl presentation was debatably the biggest stage yet for the quirky quartet, whose fusion of pop, dance and hip-hop have made them global superstars. But in the huge Cowboys Arena, the group appeared to be as stiff as frontman's plastic hair hat.

It started out with a wow factor:, Taboo, Fergie and go down from atop the stadium, outfits glittering, bewildered outfits, singing (with the help of auto-tune) the party anthem "I Gotta Feeling" with hundreds of dancers channeling in step on the field.

But the Peas didn't match the energy of the song; they seemed hesitant, and tense. It didn't help that Fergie's mic didn't kick in until she was midway through her first verse.

If the clarification for the Peas' flatness was nerves, those nerves never settled, as they trudged through such songs as "Pump It" and "Boom Boom Pow." strictly, they were fine Fergie's voice soared, the raps were performed right. They didn't excite. Even former Guns 'N Roses guitarist Slash seemed bored as he joined Fergie for a short snippet of "Sweet Child O' Mine," an needless cameo that failed to add any sizzle to the set.

So it fell to Usher to breathe some life into the halftime show, and he didn't let down as he appeared in all white with a side of dancers. Although Usher seemed to dance more of his No. 1 hit "OMG" with than sing it, his syncopated moves and flips provided the power jolt that the Peas lacked.

The Black Eyed Peas brought the youth, but little else. "I Gotta Feeling" the NFL will be looking to try and find a better balance in time for Indianapolis next year.