Monday, February 13, 2012

The 2012 Grammys Puddles of Myself Play-by-Play

Last night Matt Domino covered the 2012 Grammys in the only way he knew how—by doing a Puddles of Myself play-by-play of the entire telecast.

Welcome to another week, my Puddlers. Whitney Houston's death this weekend was a great tragedy and I am going to offer some brief, impressionistic thoughts on her and the aftermath of her death later on this week. However, yesterday it occurred to me that it had been a long time since I had done one of my witty, hilarious play-by-plays of any kind of event. So, with the 2012 Grammys serving as a sort of impromptu tribute to Whitney Houston, I figured last night was as good as any to break out the jokes.

I hope you laugh and enjoy and laugh.

It's Grammy night, one of everyone's favorite nights of the year. Alright, so maybe it's not but, in light of Whitney Houston's tragic passing, I thought it might be interesting to do a Puddles of Myself play-by-play of the event. Obviously Whitney Houston was a singular talent. I dare you to listen to hits like "How Will I Know?" "I Wanna Dance With Somebody," or "I Will Always Love You" and not get goose bumps. Houston made "The Star Spangled Banner" a number one hit for God's sake and if you listen to her version and don't get emotional, then I doubt you are human. So, I'm going to try to manage a play-by-play of the 2012 Grammys while simultaneously watching the Atlanta-Miami and Memphis-Utah games on ESPN. We'll see how long I can make it covering each.

8:00 - We're live from LA and it’s the Boss! He's counting down with a classic "Unh, Twuh, Three, FUH!" It’s his new single. I was hoping for "Rosalita"

8:02 - I think one of the lyrics to this song was "from a shotgun shack to the Silverdome." This song isn't great, but you have to love a lyric like that.

8:04 - Great shot of McCartney! That was worth tuning in for in my book. Aaand there's Gaga with a net on her face.

8:05 - LL Cool J goes straight to the Whitney tribute. He leads the audience in a prayer. Seems a little too Christian with so many Jews in the audience. What? Too offensive?

8:08 - Classic Whitney clip from the Grammys. I always think my heart is going to explode when she hits those high notes.

8:15 - Bruno Mars is smooth. I don't know the song and its fairly forgettable but I really liked the whole performance. Meanwhile, Miami and Atlanta are at the half. 63-41 Miami. Wade has 21 on 7-11 shooting. Seems like one of those classic "bad" Atlanta nights, but if Miami can play like they have been this game (and they always should play this well) they will have the title on lock down.

8:24 - Bonnie and Alicia do Etta. I like it! Well I like Alicia Keys' face. And I like the Bonnie Raitt album Give it Up. Adele wins for Best Solo Pop Performance for "Someone Like You." Is anyone surprised?

8:29 - Chris Brown dancing up and down a block pyramid is pretty legit. I have no idea what the song is. I feel like so many pop songs are riding on that techno undercurrent that it keeps each song from being truly memorable. Maybe I just sound really old.

8:36 - Best Rap Performance goes to Jay-Z and Kanye for "Otis." Worst song on the album. Jay and Kanye no show! Wow.

8:41 - Oh sorry, I fell asleep during that Kelly Clarkson duet. What? There's gonna be a Glen Campbell tribute later?! I love it. Wow, I'm about 60 years old

8:46 - Jack Black talks about indie cred and introduces the Foo Fighters—one of the most overrated and worst bands of my generation. Yes, that makes me a hater. And no I'm not a snob—I think J. Geils Band is one of the best bands of all time.

8:52 - And the generic rock performance concludes. Though you have to appreciate the Slayer t-shirt. The McCartney promo features a "The End" tease. Could it be? Meanwhile in a woodshed game in Atlanta, Miami is up 86-58. And the obligatory "Linsanity" discussion begins. Lin sleeping on a couch with his married brother's couch is fantastic stuff though. That's old school NBA. Also, if you don't know Ivan Johnson on the Hawks, you should. That was the best pre-Lin story this season.

8:56 - Rhianna and Coldplay team up. Let's see those thighs Rhianna!

8:57 - No! She's wearing pants! I can get into "We Found Love," though. The video is pretty epic.

9:06 - This Coldplay song isn't terrible; I could see myself being irrationally moved by the melody when I was about 10 or 11. For the record two awards have been given out so far.

9:08 - Miami up 94-67. Spolestra is wisely resting Wade and Lebron. Mike Tirico and Hubie Brown are talking about McGrady and Stackhouse being valuable locker room guys for the Hawks. Ummm, this is getting a little awkward.

9:14 - Mario Manningham, Victor Cruz and some girl from NCIS are onstage. I hate the Giants! NOOOO! It’s the the Cruz salsa dance. He's terrible. Fitting that he's on the Grammys seeing as he's going to eventually be known as a one hit wonder. And this presentation of Best Rock Performance is awful too. "Walk" by the Foo Fighters wins.  It seriously should have just been called "Song." In one of the biggest understatements in the past ten years, Dave Grohl calls Nevermind "a Nirvana record" when referring to Butch Vig’s production work.  And then there is an awkward transition to Seacrest while Grohl just shouts, "Long live rock n' roll!" Long live the train wreck!

9:17 - Beach Boys tribute starts off with Maroon 5 doing "Little Surfer Girl." It’s actually not too bad.

9:19 - Now Foster the People are doing "Wouldn't it Be Nice." This is good too. Except for the fat guy with the bells wearing a 1965ish yellow shirt.

9:22 - And finally its the actual fake Beach Boys without Brian Wilson doing "Good Vibrations." Can't stand that Mike Love. Wait! I stand corrected! There's Brian trying to hit those otherworldly high notes. Of course he can't make it, but you have to love the effort. Will Paul come up to chew carrots on "Vega-tables?"

9:24 - And there's the piercing Theremin coda! Not bad, not bad at all real/sham Beach Boys. I think I'll turn on "Don't Worry Baby" now and cry for all the inner sadness in the world.

9:31 - Stevie Wonder gets the standing ovation and immediately he's talking straight to Whitney Houston in heaven. Suddenly he goes into a "Love Me Do" harmonica solo. Goose bump city. He welcomes my man, PAUL MCCARTNEY with the immortal Joe Walsh—another one of my favorites.  I really think I'm 60 years old.

9:33 - Man, Paul is amazing. This is like a Ram-era track. Distant "Uncle Albert" cousin in my mind.

9:38 - Best R&B Album goes to...CHRIS BROWN! The Grammys were always about beating women weren't they? #inappropriate

9:39 - I don't know who these two people are. I'm digging the vibe, but I wish the dude were Jack White.

9:42 - OK, this Taylor Swift song/performance is on point. I'm not ashamed to admit it. However, right now my mind is wandering to the hope that the Grammys will do a montage of incendiary Whitney Houston performances. We can only hope right?

9:45 - Yep, she killed it.

9:46 - Memphis and Utah are playing now. Two very likable teams, but God those Memphis throwbacks are awful. What is NOT awful is Chris Mullin's thick New York accent on the play-by-play. 11-4 Utah.

9:52 - Song of the Year goes to "Rolling in the Deep" by Adele. I mean, did they even have to pretend anyone else had a chance. Like "Holocene" was going to win. Maybe my favorite on the album but...sorry, Kate Beckinsale's legs and face completely distracted me.

9:55 - John Stamos is playing guitar for Katy Perry. What a turn!

9:56 - I wish Mad Men were about to come on.

9:59 - Best Country Album goes to "Own the Night" by Lady Antebellum. Seems fair to me. I'll go turn on "Thousand Dollar Wedding" by Gram Parsons now and SMDH.

10:10 - Gwyneth always looks fantastic. Where was I back in 1996 when she was on the market? And I get Adele, but I'm not totally impressed. I know its good and I understand why everyone loves her, but I'm always left sort of underwhelmed. I'm probably nuts. This isn't helping me convince people that I'm 26.

10:11 - FYI the pop landscape hasn't been this interesting since the late 80's-early 90's when you had Madonna, emerging rap stars, Whitney, Janet, U2, the Boss, MJ, and the hovering specter of Prince. Now: Niki Minaj, Adele, Gaga, Bruno Mars, Beyonce, Jay-Z's ghost, Kanye, and the obligatory indie rock nod each year.

10:17 - Here we go baby-Glen Campbell time. The Rhinestoned One. Right into "Gentle On My Mind!"

10:19 - "Southern Nights!" My favorite karaoke song to embarrass myself to. Such a great song. You need to get this one stuck in your head ASAP.

10:21 - The Rhinestoned One himself! He's dealing on "Rhinestone Cowboy!" Jon Lovitz would be proud.

10:24 - Paul's got one hand up for Glen! Now THAT'S a moment. Campbell gets a Lifetime Achievement award, so does The Legend, George Jones and my girl, Diana Ross.

10:26 - Utah 34-27. Memphis is getting out hustled, but Tony Allen chases down a Gordon Haywood dunk attempt. Could have been a foul, but you have to like that effort.

10:34 - Best New Artist goes to Bon Iver! A win for indie rock and also for this impressionistic piece I did on his new album back in June!

10:35 - Longest speech so far comes from the indie guy. You have to love it.

10:37 - In two months, at this time, I'll be watching Don Draper brood and make a face about something. Looking forward to it.

10:46 - Mysterious spotlight. Jennifer Hudson singing "I Will Always Love You." Damn you Dolly. Why you gotta do a guy like that by writing a beautiful song that makes you want to cry and then having a beautiful, transcendent black singer cover it almost 20 years later so that it became perhaps THE document of human love, passion and pain?

10:54 - I'm not sure what this techno thing is supposed to be.

10:56 - HOLD UP! I don't know what this mouse is, but I am definitely on board with that kind of weirdness. Is it too late to get him/her in the GOP race?

10:58 - This is definitely how I pictured the future. Finally we are getting where we are supposed to be.

11:02 - 50-49 Utah. Memphis clawing back. I really like Rudy Gay. If he'll concede to Randolph when he comes back from injury, then Gay will really have developed into the player he was supposed to be - second best player/do-it-all guy on a contender. This game is getting good.

11:04 - OK found out that the mouse was Deadmou5. Will have to pay more attention to it going forward. Meanwhile, Drake (my man, love Take Care) introduces Niki Minaj, who is my babe of the moment, edging out Hathaway and a revitalized Reese. Minaj just has it all.

11:11 - Classic exorcism performance by Minaj leads us to Lady Antebellum introducing Record of the Year Award. Now THAT's a segue. And obviously Adele wins.

11:13 - 63-61 Utah. This is a back and forth battle/another reason why the NBA is so great right now. A random Sunday night game between Utah and Memphis has become compelling television with interesting and hard-working players of all levels of experience on both sides. I really like Memphis. They definitely need Randolph to reestablish their powerful low post dynamic.

11:19- And its Diana Ross. One of the best. And she's about to give Adele her next award for Album of the Year.

11:20 - 21 by Adele.

11:20 - I think I just saw @NotRickRubin walking onstage.

11:21 - She gave a shout out to @NotRickRubin!

11:23 - It's McCartney time! The Medley (partial)!

11:24 - He can still do the Paul voice. But man we need George on guitar. What the hell is that guy playing?

11:26 - I'm crying. #7beersandgrammys

11:27 - Bruce does which guitar solo?

11:28 - Joe Walsh gets George. Fitting. #smartguitarists

11:29 - NO DAVE GROHL! NO!

Well that wraps up the 2012 Grammys, which seems like it was one of the more memorable Grammys in recent memory. I think we learned a lot. Dave Grohl is awful. Adele is the big winner. Indie rock gets one nod per year. And overall we have a lot of weird music and pop personalities out there now, so don't be lame and unoriginal by just saying that music now sucks. I don't know about half of the songs or the artists that I saw tonight, but I'm willing to listen and learn and that's what always keeps you from getting old and boring.

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