Saving Country Music’s 2017 Grammy Awards LIVE Blog

grammy-awardsWelcome ladies and gentlemen to the 2017 installment of Saving Country Music’s Grammy Awards LIVE blog. It promises to be an interesting year with one of SCM’s own homegrown artists in Sturgill Simpson up for two of the biggest awards on the night (Best Country Album, and Album of the Year), as well as plenty of opportunity for snark and commentary on the contemporary goings on at a modern awards show.

As the night goes on I’ll be peppering you with my observations and rolling commentary as we all watch along together. So get your little refresh finger ready, hope the duct-taped SCM server doesn’t crash on us, and let’s have a fun night.

To see the performers, presenters, and nominees, check out the 2017 Grammy Awards Complete Preview

(All times CENTRAL time)

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10:52 – THANK YOU THANK YOU to everyone who stopped by, followed along, liked, tweeted, shared, commented, or just hovered. It helped keep me going. More tomorrow and this week. Onward and upward.

10:46 – To wrap up the whole “Best Country Album” getting moved off the telecast, obviously it wasn’t to leave room for Sturgill to receive Album of the Year. It was clearly done because the Grammy’s thought the Best Country Album category didn’t have enough star power, and instead replaced it with Best Country Solo Performance. Basically they thought Maren Morris sold better than Sturgill, and I think that’s a shame. But Sturgill fans shouldn’t be looking for things to complain about. It was a great day for him.

The story of the 2017 Grammy Awards though will be Adele, and Adele. She won all the big ones, she had the night’s biggest accidental moment, and how you feel about her will probably be how you feel about everything tonight. Beyonce’s fans will be disappointed, and that’s totally understandable, but Adele was the only one who could beat Beyonce, and her fans still save grace. Beyonce had a strong performance, but the best might fall to Chance The Rapper. Bruno Mars and Sturgill were also solid.

10:41 – Adele was who I believed would win Album of the Year from the very beginning, and though the political angle became very seductive for a Beyonce win, ultimately what 25 did upon release was just too hard to keep down. Sturgill was always a long shot, and the victory was scored by even receiving a nomination. He’s now part of the most exclusive club in all of music, but his music and message remain grounded. He could have made a spectacle tonight and received a bunch of attention, but he’s playing the long game, which is smart, and what he’s always done. There is no more ceiling for him or the independent country artists coming behind him.

10:39 – Adele in consecutive acceptance speeches pays tribute to Beyonce. Both Adele and Beyonce are crying at the end of her Album of the Year speech.

10:38 – Despite the flub, it’s Adele’s night.

10:36 – The Grammy for Album of the Year goes to Adele for 25.

10:35 – The Grammy for Record of the Year goes to Adele for “Hello.”

10:34 – Tim McGraw and Faith Hill come out to present the final two awards.

10:29 – Now on to the final two points of business. And if Justin Bieber wins Album of the Year, I’m flying tomorrow to Oakland to flip cars and loot storefronts. Not sure why Oakland. That seems to be the best place for that kind of thing.

10:27 – Ralph Stanley, Melre Haggard, Sonny James, Joey Feek, Guy Clark, Leon Russell, and others get face time during the Grammy’s In Memoriam.

10:23 – I was beginning to worry we weren’t going to get an In Memoriam segment this year. One of my favorite parts of the show. And they always go much deeper than the CMA’s and ACM’s.

10:21 – Neil Portnow always has some really poignant things to say, even though I sense the rest of the audience tunes out because the suit is talking. What he’s saying about music right now is exactly how I feel, and is at the founding of Saving Country Music.

10:18 – Thanks to everyone leaving comments down below. Trying to read them when I have a free second.

10:16 – Good observation from a guy named Brandon on Twitter. “I dont think Sturgill stood out tonight, which is a compliment. He looked/sounded like he belonged there alongside the others.”

That’s kind of how I felt.

10:12 – Okay, I gave Chance the Rapper a shot, and I was impressed. I’m no rap fan and really don’t know how to judge it, but I could feel his passion, and that’s what counts.

10:10 – See, this Chance The Rapper stuff is the way to get the message across, whether you agree with it or not. This dude is testifying. Passion. Poetry. Testification. Don’t just scream. Speak. Preach.

10:08 – That greazy dude that Corden was screwing with the chair of is the American music Anti-Christ, Max Martin.

10:06 – Can’t deny Pentatonix is talented at what they do. But here comes the proverbial “but.”

They whip my ass.

10:05 – Still some work to do.

keith-urban-tweet

9:59 – Bruno Mars continues to impress. Truth is though, just about anyone can do that finger tap stuff on the neck of a guitar with a few minutes of practice. Prince tribute > George Michael tribute.

9:56 – George Michael Tribute, Prince Tribute, Bee Gees tribute. Merle Haggard is next, right?

9:55 – Bruno Mars is one of the very select few who can fill Prince’s shoes. You taking notes Thomas Rhett.

9:52 – Man, I love me some funk music, but that’s basically all we’ve gotten tonight. One funk performance after another. It’s the mono-genre incarnate.

9:51 – Twitter liked this tweet I guess:

twitter-sturgill

9:46 – Hmm. While they were announcing that Album of the Year would be given out soon, Sturgill was playing in the background. Anyone else pick up on that? Wishful thinking probably.

9:43– Hey I’m all for expressing yourself, but I question these guys as the proper messengers. Kendrick Lamar did this SO much better on last year’s Grammys.

9:42 – “I want to thank you for perpetuating all of the evil that you’ve been perpetuating.”

9:41 – I have no idea what’s going on right now.

9:39 – They’ll forgive the swearing Adele. They may not forgive the screwing up. But they should.

9:38 – What a coincidence Adele, my Grandma had that same shade of monkey shit green in her curtains.

9:36 – The Grammy for Song of the Year goes to Adele for “Hello.”

9:35 – Get to it Celine Dion, the 10 o’Clock news is coming up.

9:29 – Hate the song medley. But who among us doesn’t count the Bee Gees as a guilty pleasure? Barry Gibb is a hell of a songwriter.

9:26 – Barry Gibb all trying to act that if his brothers were still alive and he had a strong connection to General Caldaron’s Colombian Marching Power like back in 1977, he couldn’t do this so much better.

9:23 – Charley Pride and Jimmie Rodgers honored as Lifetime Achievement award recipients.

9:20 – And now the server may crash as the world truly asks “Who the fuck is Sturgill Simpson?”

9:19 – Classy, solid, strong performance from Sturgill Simpson. Nothing flashy, no pizzaz. Just good music and good singing. Won’t have the viral impact his second performance on SNL did, but it will ingratiate him to the thousands of people who are looking for good music  but just don’t know where to find it.

9:16 – Sturgill Simpson has more horns on stage right now than The Band Perry has fans left.

9:15 – America, this is Sturgill Simpson. He is the true talent of country  music. What you hear on the radio is a lie. You have better options.

9:13 – Whoa, Dwight introducing Sturgill.

9:12 – Dwight Yoakam? Dwight Yoakam! A pleasant surprise, and giving props to Sharon Jones.

9:12 – Completely stupid and over the top. But entertaining. Good job Gagatalica.

9:10 – Man, I was leery of Metallica with Lady Gaga on paper, but this kind of works, despite all the histrionics. Lady Gaga is on a big winning streak right now.

9:09 – I left my heavy metal phase back in my early 20’s, but I kind of think this is pretty badass.

9:08 – Man, Tony Bennett & his band have really stepped up their energy level since I last saw them perform with Lady Gaga.

9:06 – Seriously, James Corden is the worst.

9:03 – The Grammy for Best Rap Album goes to Chance The Rapper’s “Coloring Book.”

8:58 – Folks, we think we’ve fixed the refreshing issues some people were experiencing. Feel free to pipe up in the comments if you continue to have issues.

8:56 – Honestly, all the scrunched faces of sympathy in the crowd and the extended ovation just make it worse. We all make mistakes.

8:52 – I love Adele, but that last thing you can do is restart a song. That is music 101. Luckily, she is killing it now. If she wins Album of the Year, this is all people will be talking about, especially Beyoncé fans.

8:50 – Adele screws up her George Michael tribute and starts over. Very awkward. Never seen that on a live awards show.

8:49 – Decent performance from Maren Morris, but all it does is solidify for me that she’s an R&B/pop star, and probably doesn’t belong in country.

8:47 – That’s the most pronounced pant suit I’ve ever seen on Alicia Keys. That think could stop an airliner.

8:45 – It appears Maren Morris forgot her pants backstage.

8:43 – Hey folks, some are saying they’re having troubles seeing new posts refreshing. We’re working on it. In the meantime, perhaps try a different device if you’re having troubles. It appears to be working for most people.

8:38 – The Grammy for Best Urban Contemporary Album goes to Beyoncé for “Lemonade”

8:36 – For all those morons out there that think Americana is racist, appreciate this William Bell / Gary Clark Jr. performance is the Americana slot for tonight

8:31 – Katy Perry is Taylor Swift without the songwriting chops.

8:28 – I think this Katy Perry stage production / performance probably looked like a much better concept on paper. The whole dogwood fence slat thing just isn’t working. I don’t know.

8:26 – The career resurgence of Little Big Town still stupefies me.

8:20 – See, take moments to showcase why you’re a musician that deserves to be on a massive stage with an international audience. Don’t hide behind a computer and production.

8:19 – Never sought out a Bruno Mars album, but every time he’s foisted in my face, I’m generally amicable.

8:17 – Holy shit, there’s actual musicians playing actual instruments on the stage of the Grammy Awards. Yes, you can play, sing, and dance at the same time. You know, if you have talent.

8:15 – James Corden doing a weaker version of Ellen’s selfy at the Oscars a few years back. Carpool karaoke is a weak bit, by the way.

P.S. – That was Lukas Nelson in the background at the beginning of this bit. Son of Willie. Who is Paris Jackson again?

8:12 – This was a VERY weak category, stupid it was televised and on Best Country Album. And even though I’m lukewarm on Maren, “My Church” is a really solid song, and deserved it with obvious shoutout to Brandy Clark.

8:10 – The Grammy for Best Country Solo Performance goes to Maren Morris for “My Church”

8:06 – Anybody else having problems seeing the LIVE blog update? If so, pipe up in the comments.

8:03 – I appreciate Beyoncé’s message and effort, but it felt a little too much like anointing her as an idol as opposed to allowing the breath of her talent and creativity to be illustrated, and her expression to ring through all the pageantry.

8:01 – Beyoncé was introduced by her mother before the performance, and her performance has a very mother/feminine theme. The pregnant Beyoncé  tries to bring the life cycle full circle in her performance.

7:59 – Now we’re live.

7:57 – Really intrigued by this Beyoncé performance but I wish there were clearer lines between what is live and choreographed, and what is pre-recorded. If this is just a video presentation, then it’s just not as cool.

7:55 – Lukas Graham < Lukas Nelson . That Ballerini performance really was just bad.

7:54 – Awful. Just awful.

7:53 – Looks like Kelsea Ballerini had someone seduce her, I mean produce her a hit.

7:52 – Wow, Kelsea is pretty pitchey. Country pop is always exposed on the big stage. Wow, this is really bad. Uncoordinated.

7:50 – “Hello Kelsea Ballerini, this is Dale Watson. You ever heard my song ‘Country My Ass?'”

kelsea-ballerini-dale-watson

7:49 – Also found Ed Sheeran’s ode to the female form shallow and mildly disrespectful. See Kris Kristofferson for how to be sexy right.

7:47 – They’re trying to move this thing along too fast. No breathing room to allow moments to happen. Adele was the only exception, and that was with a song from 2015.

7:45 – C’mon, no surprise celebrity recipient for David Bowie’s Grammy? A family member? Missed opportunity for a special moment.

7:44 – The Grammy for Best Rock Song goes David Bowie for “Blackstar” (like it was close).

7:42 – “We have some surprises in store,” Sturgill Simpson’s saxophonist Brad Walker.

7:40 – I want to like Ed Sheeran, but I can’t get into this loop and pedal stuff. Get a band.

7:38 – Pants off for Harambe.

7:37 – When the country performers are more pop than the pop performers, who know how far we’ve gone.

7:32 – Cool story bruh, now get the hell off the stage and get Sturgill up here.

7:31 – The Grammy for Best Pop Duo / Group Perfomance goes to “Stressed Out” by 21 Pilots. Oh and they’re taking their pants off. Music in 2017 folks!

7:29 – Can’t believe Nick Jonas even has the guts to show his face on another awards show stage after the abortion he performed with his “guitar solo” on the ACM’s last year.

7:28 – The only thing good about this Keith Urban performance is it just reminds me he got skunked by Sturgill earlier today for Best Country Album. What a bunch of Max Headroom bullshit.

7:26 – Can’t say it any better than I did in my review of this song from earlier today:

““The Fighter” very well may be the most non-country “country” song released as a single in the history of the genre. It’s at least close enough that I feel confident to puff my chest out and challenge anyone to offer an alternative to this ultra-synth, completely inorganic, Macbook-composed ode to the Metrosexual lifestyle more urbanized than a perfectly-waxed gonad glistening with Ax Body Spray in the waterfall of EDM light pulsations.”

7:25 – Just don’t sell us on Scientology there Travolta.

7:24– So seeing a lot of chatter that Chance The Rapper is actually decent and deserves New Artist more than anyone. I’ll have to check it out.

7:17 – Not opposed to Daft Punk, but this Dark Crystal bullshit isn’t doing it for me.

7:16 – No way this Weeknd dude is singing live. He should have kept the weird-ass Cthulhu hairdo to distract us from his lip-syncing.

7:15 – When I heard robots were taking the stage, I thought Keith Urban and Busbee were taking the stage.

7:14 – I have no idea who Paris Jackson is, but it looks like a tattoo artist threw up on her. Symmetry people!

7:13 – Two female “country” artists up for New Artist, and it goes to a dude who forgot to take the sticker off his cap. Eat your heart out Minnie Pearl.

7:12 – The Grammy for Best New Artist goes to Chance The Rapper.

7:12 – First politically-charged statement. Take another drink.

7:12 – My crazy aunt once had a goiter that looked like that growth on Jennifer Lopez’s dress

7:11 – First Trump joke of the night. Take a drink.

7:11 – Alright, the joke about Google crashing from folks asking who Sturgill Simpson is was pretty funny. Sturgill Simpson’s name was just mentioned on the Grammy Awards. Let that sink in.

7:09 – James Corden looks like he should be serving me mints and wipees and the swanky restaurant downtown. The first funny thing he does tonight will be his first ever.

7:07 – Lol, James Corden gets fake stuck on the stage rise and then falls down the stairs. Would be funnier if it actually happened for real.

7:05 – Adele can go country any time she wants. One of the rare ones with permission.

7:03 – Adele’s dress reminds me of the backdrop of Jason Isbell’s live show, and the stained glass of the Ryman Auditorium. Classy way to start an awards show. Already better than 90% of ’em I’ve had to suffer through.

7:02 – We start off with Adele singing “Hello,” a favorite for Record of the Year. Thankfully there appears to be no microphone screw up that ruined her performance last year and had her running to In-and-Out for comfort food.

6:58 – Last minute Dark Horse pick: Maren Morris wins New Artist of the Year.

6:57 – Theories about as to why Best Country Album was moved to the pre-telecast this year. Usually, it’s part of the televised awards. One theory is there wasn’t enough star power in the category with Sturgill and Loretta Lynn in it. So instead they moved Best Country Solo performance to primetime. The other theory is they don’t want to televise two awards to the same artist they can’t help it, meaning perhaps Sturgill has a chance to win Album of the Year. We’ll see.

6:52 – For more on Sturgill Simpson’s Best Country Album win, CLICK HERE. For a recap of all the pre-telecast festivities and awards, CLICK HERE. And then come back and join us on the LIVE blog.

6:50 – Alright folks, it’s already been a crazy day, and the televised portion of the Grammy Awards hasn’t even started. To recap what has already happened, Sturgill Simpson won Best COuntry Album after it was moved to the pre-telecast portion of the awards.

Here’s a breakdown of all the awards already given out:

  • Best Country Album – Sturgill Simpson’s “A Sailor’s Guide to Earth”
  • Best Country Song – Lori McKenna – “Humble & Kind”
  • Best Folk Album – Sarah Jarosz — Undercurrent
  • Best Bluegrass Album – O’Connor Band With Mark O’Connor – “Coming Home”
  • Best Americana Album – William Bell – “This Is Where I Live”
  • Best American Roots Song – Vince Gill and the Time Jumpers – “Kid Sister”
  • Best American Roots Performance – Sarah Jarosz  – “House of Mercy”
  • Best Roots Gospel Album – Joey + Rory – “Hymns”
  • Best Traditional Pop Album – Willie Nelson – “Summertime”