We’ve just had the 56th Annual GRAMMY Awards wrap up a few hours ago. So how better to kick off my new “Music Monday” segment than with a compilation of the award winners? The results I’ve taken from the official GRAMMY site.
The Music Monday segment will essentially be a curation of music I’m enjoying, why I enjoy it and why you might too. My hope is that it’ll help people discover more great music to add to your playlists. As with any tastes, we won’t have the same, so feel free to discuss the music, but don’t look too deeply into stereotyping based on music.
Also, I’m not a professional music critic. Nor do I play one on tv haha. I have years of choral experience and play the piano, violin & bass guitar to a reasonable level. My wife is more the musician in the family, but I’m usually the one discovering new music, hence this segment.
If you don’t want to wait, just click here for the full playlist of all the videos on this page. Play it in the background while you’re working like I do.
Some of the categories I don’t know much about, so I won’t comment on them. But for completeness, I’ve grabbed them and added them to the playlist, etc.
There are a lot of embedded videos on this page. It may load slowly because of that. I’ve done everything I can to speed up the load time hopefully without compromising your experience.
Without further ado, here are the GRAMMY Winners for 2014:
Record of the Year
Daft Punk, Pharrell Williams & Nile Rodgers took out the Record of the Year with Get Lucky. I have to say, I prefer Daft Punk’s dance style (think Around The World or One More Time) to their more retro style in Random Access Memories. If I was selecting the awards, I would’ve given it to Imagine Dragons for Radioactive.
For this song, Daft Punk also won:
- Best Pop Duo/Group Performance
- Best Dance/Electronica Album
Album of the Year
Nothing against Daft Punk, they’re one of my favorite artists, but how Random Access Memories beat out Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ The Heist is or Taylor Swift’s Red is beyond me. Plain & simple, I don’t like Random Access Memories. The only two songs that I don’t dislike are Doing It Right and Contact (which is a pretty good song among a bad bunch imo). The worst part about this award is it may inspire Daft Punk to make more like this and less like their dance tracks.
Song of the Year
Spot on Grammy judges. Spot on. Lorde’s Royals is a song that when I first heard it I didn’t see the fuss, but it quickly grows on you. I love the harmonies and the minimalist style (is that even a thing?).
For this song, Lorde also won:
- Best Pop Solo Performance
Best New Artist
As self producing, self directing, self writing, self labeling, self awesoming artists, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis represent the next generation of music artists.
With the video above (one of my all time favorite music videos), Macklemore & Ryan Lewis made a huge splash on the scene, particularly for a group that’s deliberately unsigned. I would’ve gone to see them in concert when they were in Perth, but that was the same week I was in USA.
Best Pop Instrumental Album
Note the bus driver, barber and bartender – that’s Herb Alpert, the trumpeter behind the album Steppin’ Out that won this Grammy. Love me some Jazz. The video above is the first from the album. I particularly love the energy of his pieces, like Puttin’ On The Ritz.
Best Pop Vocal Album
Bruno Mars is one of my favorites. I can pretty much be assured I’ll enjoy a song simply because it’s one of his. This year he beat out an impressive lineup of new artists (and the always awesome Justin Timberlake).
I’m really struggling to pick a favorite song from this album. They’re all fantastic. But if I had to choose, it would have to be Locked Out Of Heaven.
Best Dance Recording
Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album
Ok, so Michael Bublé is pretty much always going to win this category if he puts out an album 🙂 His voice is just so easy to listen to, whether it’s traditional covers or original songs. My favorite from this album is It’s A Beautiful Day.
Best Rock Performance
It takes a lot to beat Led Zepplin, David Bowie, Queens of the Stone Age & Jack White for a rock performance, but Imagine Dragons absolutely nailed it. Though I’m still trying to decide which version of Radioactive I like best. This one or the cover by the amazing Lindsey Stirling & Pentatonix, both of whom will appear many times in Music Mondays.
Best Metal Performance
I don’t usually like metal, so I don’t really have any commentary on this one. But congrats to Black Sabbath for God Is Dead?
Best Rock Song
Put Nirvana and Paul McCartney together and you get something awesome. That song is called Cut Me Some Slack. Special mention to the Rolling Stones’ Doom And Gloom, which was surely a close second.
Best Rock Album
I’m not entirely sure how a 1970s album wins a category in a 2014 awards show, but hey, anytime you can give an award to Led Zepplin (for Celebration Day), why not?
Best Alternative Music Album
Vampire Weekend won for Modern Vampires Of The City.
Best R&B Performance
Snarky Puppy With Lalah Hathaway won for Something
Best Traditional R&B Performance
Gary Clark Jr with Please Come Home
Best R&B Song
Justin Timberlake with Pusher Love Girl. I just don’t get this one. I’ll have to listen to it a couple of times.
Best Urban Contemporary Album
I enjoy most of Rihanna’s work. Unapologetic is no exception. My favorite from the album is Diamonds.
Best R&B Album
What an amazing sound from Alicia Keys’ Girl On Fire. Hard to pick a favorite in this one, but I have to go with Brand New Me.
Best Rap Performance
Love Thrift Shop from Macklemore & Ryan Lewis.
For this song, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis also won:
- Best Rap Song
Best Rap/Sung Collaboration
Great song by Jay Z & Justin Timberlake. Holy Grail has quite a lot of cultural references. Make sure to watch the video, not just listen to the song.
Best Rap Album
Without a doubt, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis deserved to win with The Heist. I could listen to this one all day. I’m fairly sure I’ve watched or listened to Can’t Hold Us at least 100 times on Youtube.
Best Country Solo Performance
Darius Rucker’s Wagon Wheel has a great country sound. Classic video too.
Best Country Duo/Group Performance
The Civil Wars won this one with From This Valley. I don’t know much about country music, but after visiting Nashville, TN last year, I’m growing in my appreciation. It’s a shame Timber didn’t get nominated (maybe it didn’t qualify) because that’s my favorite of the year.
Best Country Song
Kacey Musgraves won with Merry Go Round. Whenever I think country music, I think of a sound like this.
Kacey also won Best Country Album with Same Trailer Different Park, which features Merry Go Round. I’m guessing there’s some references to dogs, wives leaving, and a horse named Jake.
Best New Age Album
Not sure their definition of “New Age” and mine are the same. It’s more Classical in my opinion. I really like this album Love’s River by Laura Sullivan. Nice and relaxing with a cool story behind each piece. The one I’ve featured is Wishing On A Dandelion, which was inspired by her wishing to have a child. The drawings are all from Laura and her daughter.
Best Improvised Jazz Solo
Orbits by Wayne Shorter
Best Jazz Vocal Album
Gregory Porter won with Liquid Spirit. Voice like honey. Need I say more?
Best Jazz Instrumental Album
I enjoy Jazz, my brother-in-law is a great saxophonist and my grandfather had his own Jazz band. But I still don’t get what separates good Jazz from bad Jazz. This sounds good and it won a Grammy, so I guess it is good 🙂
Best Latin Jazz Album
Song for Maura by Paquito d’Rivera and Trio Corrente
Best Gospel/Contemporary Christian Music Performance
Break Every Chain by Tasha Cobbs
Best Gospel Song
Tye Tribbett with If He Did It Before….Same God.
Tye Tribbett also won Best Gospel Album with the album which includes this song.
Best Contemporary Christian Music Song
Overcomer by Mandisa. They also won Best Contemporary Christian Music Album for the album that includes this song.
Best Latin Pop Album
Vida by Draco Rosa
Best Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album
Treinta Dias by La Santa Cecilia
Best Regional Mexican Album
A Mi Manera by Mariachi Divas De Cindy Shea
Best Tropical Latin Album
Pacific Mambo Orchestra by Pacific Mambo Orchestra
Best American Roots Song
Love Has Come For You by Steve Martin & Edie Brickell
Best Americana Album
Old Yellow Moon by Emmylou Harris & Rodney Crowell
Best Bluegrass Album
The Streets Of Baltimore by Del McCoury Band
Best Blues Album
Get Up! by Ben Harper With Charlie Musselwhite
Best Folk Album
My Favorite Picture Of You by Guy Clark
Best Regional Roots Music Album
Dockside Sessions by Terrance Simien & The Zydeco Experience. Couldn’t find this.
Best Reggae Album
Ziggy Marley In Concert by Ziggy Marley
Best World Music Album
This was a tie between Savor Flamenco by Gypsy Kings and Singing For Peace Around The World by Ladysmith Black Mambazo (which I couldn’t figure out what it was).
Best Children’s Album
Throw A Penny In The Wishing Well by Jennifer Gasoi
Best Score Soundtrack For Visual Media
Skyfall album composed by Thomas Newman
Best Song Written For Visual Media
Skyfall by Adele. Absolutely love this one.
Best Music Video
Suit & Tie by Justin Timberlake & Jay Z. No idea how this beat out Can’t Hold Us.
There were a few that I didn’t include in here either because it isn’t music (like the award for best producer) or I couldn’t find it.
Hope you’ve enjoyed the list here. Please share it around.
Because you sat through all that (or scrolled to the bottom haha), here’s the whole playlist embedded: