Grammy Recap


Beyonce (Left) & Rihanna (Right) at Grammys

Liam O'Toole, Reporter

The 2015 Grammys were highlighted by the dominance of Sam Smith, some crazy outfits, and amazing performances. Sam Smith came out on top, receiving four Grammys. He won record of the year, song of the year, best new artist, and best pop vocal album. Not only did Smith win four Grammy awards, but three of the awards are highly sought after and respected awards. Many artists dream of winning just one of these awards let alone three in one year. Unfortunately, his awards are surrounded with controversy. Tom Petty and the writers of his hit song “ I Won’t Back Down” believe Smith’s Grammy winning song “Stay With Me” are very similar. Smith’s representative told Rolling Stone magazine that “Recently the publishers for the song ‘I Won’t Back Down,’ written by Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne, contacted the publishers for ‘Stay With Me,’ written by Sam Smith, James Napier and William Phillips, about similarities heard in the melodies of the choruses of the two compositions, not previously familiar with the 1989 Petty/Lynne song, the writers of ‘Stay With Me’ listened to ‘I Won’t Back Down’ and acknowledged the similarity.” Although Sam Smith and the other writers said it was a complete coincidence they quickly settled the dispute by adding Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne to the team of writers on “Stay With Me.” They did not receive any Grammy credit, and it is unclear if they will receive a portion of the money earned from this song.

Beck won Album of the Year with “Morning Phase.” He created this album in his home without record labels, without producers and writers; all he had with him was his friends. Beck played twelve different instruments on the album, but according to Kanye West this did not warrant the win. If you didn’t already know in 2009, Kanye interrupted Taylor Swift during her acceptance speech for Best Female video during the VMAs. Kanye believed she didn’t deserve this award, and it seemed that he felt the same way about Beck winning. Beck was an underdog; while watching the Grammys he was the only artist I didn’t recognize. Ed Sheeran, Beyonce, Sam Smith and Pharrell Williams were all nominated for this award. Kanye ran onto the stage and almost took the microphone again. In an interview after the Grammys, he stated, “Beck needs to respect artistry and he should have given the award to Beyonce.” Kanye is known as a cocky, self centered person, and it was on display again at the Grammys. Beyonce’s album had over a dozen writers and nineteen producers (19!). Her album titled “Beyonce” clearly didn’t have more artistry than the album Beck produced and Kanye later realized this. In a tweet, he wrote, “I would like to publicly apologize to Beck, I’m sorry Beck.” Kanye did not even listen to the album before the awards leaving one to wonder what could have been going through his head.

This years Grammys were full of amazing performances. Kanye, Paul McCartney, and Rihanna’s performance of “Fourfive Seconds” was something I never thought I would see, and it was truly great. The final two performances at the Grammys were the perfect way to close out a great night of awards. Beyonce sang “Take my Hand, Precious Lord,” followed by John Legend, and Common’s performance of “Glory.” Each performance had a special feeling to it; the lyrics and passion were so powerful it brought tears to the eyes of many watching in the audience.