With the 2021 Grammy Award ceremony set to be on January 31, 2021, we’re excited to see what’s in store for this year’s show, especially given the current pandemic circumstances. Here are a couple of things I hope to see come next month.
1. Fewer performances, more awards
Listen, as much as I love those unique Grammy moments every year, do we really need that many performances? The Grammys are still, you know, an awards show, so why not give out more awards during the primetime broadcast instead of presenting almost all of them at the Premiere Ceremony that streams online earlier in the day? Maybe they can limit the performers to general field nominees (which is plenty since there are eight nominees in each of those categories), or maybe do one performance per award. Anyways, I want to see more stars accept their awards live, at the very least for the more underappreciated genres beyond pop, R&B, rap, rock and country.
On a similar note, can the Grammys stop televising Best Comedy Album? We all love comedians, but on “Music’s Biggest Night” we’re not really there to see Jerry Seinfeld or Bill Burr on stage, especially at the expense of musicians.
With nine nominations this year, including at least a couple of likely wins, I’m excited to see if the Grammys can get Beyoncé to perform this year. I’m still in awe of her last Grammy performance, a beautiful medley of a songs off her Grammy-winning album “Lemonade.” With multiple options this year, would she do her Record of the Year nominee “Savage” with Megan Thee Stallion, or maybe a political moment with her other Record of the Year nominee “Black Parade.” Maybe she’d surprise us all and release a new song. The only thing we know is, as always, she’d probably serve us an iconic moment, something the Grammys probably need the most this year.
3. More upbeat moments
This Grammys show will be the first in 40 years not produced by Ken Ehrlich, instead being overseen by first-time executive producer Ben Winston. It felt Ehrlich’s shows increasingly favored ballads and emotional moments over upbeat performances, which sometimes drag the show down. So I hope that the Grammy speed up the tempo a bit this year.
2020 has given us some big collaborations, many of which are nominated this year, so I hope to see them at the Grammys. We could see Taylor Swift and Bon Iver perform their haunting ballad “Exile,” or maybe Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande dance it out with “Rain On Me.” It would be a memorable moment to team Latin superstars Bad Bunny and J Balvin with Dua Lipa to perform “Un Día (One Day).”
But pop isn’t the only genre with big collabs: “Rockstar” by DaBaby and Roddy Ricch was a huge hit (and a Record of the Year nominee), and so was the aforementioned “Savage” by Megan Thee Stallion and Beyoncé. In R&B, I’d love for Jhené Aiko and John Legend to team up for their nominated duet “Lightning and Thunder,” and Jacob Collier to join forces with Mahalia and Ty Dolla $ign for their catchy nominee “All I Need.”
5. World premieres
I have to give it to the Grammys on this one. At every ceremony we can expect world premiere performances, like Ed Sheeran’s “Shape of You” and Demi Lovato’s “Anyone” in recent years. Maybe we could see big names like Swift and Grande perform hits from their recently released albums “Evermore” and “Positions” for the first time. Or, who knows, even comeback singles from huge names in music.
6. More surprises
Okay, I know that we’ve already had plenty of surprises this year, and everyone wants a perfect score on their predictions, but we can’t deny the sheer rush you get when an upset happens (especially if you were predicting that one). We’ve had sweeps for the past four years now (Adele winning all five of her noms in 2017, Bruno Mars winning all six of his in 2018, Kacey Musgraves going four-for-four in 2019, and Billie Eilish winning five out of six in 2020). Wouldn’t it be nice if we got a more diverse set of winners, and perhaps a few curve balls thrown our way?
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