Talent Wins Over Commercial Pop

Now I understand what those crazy tweets Kanye West posted were all about.  The Grammys actually awarded genuine talent and rewarded indie artists over the major labels!

Arcade Fire, which took the top prize of Album of the Year with their The Suburbs, beat out the more popular acts Eminem, Lady Gaga, and Lady Antebellum, while jazz artist Esperanza Spalding (who Melinda Doolitte tweeted me personally to tell me how amazing she is – still Squeeing over that!) beat out Justin Bieber and Drake as Best New Artist. Check out her “Grooves” below:

Could such a turn-a-round mean something for music artists? Will they now feel empowered to cultivate substance over superficiality? Or, more importantly, do these wins now spell the inevitable death of autotune and electronic pop?

I mean, I would feel much better if David had been recognized among the nominees this year – that might indicate that the Grammys still prefer talent over commercialism (but then again, artists still need their labels and managers to actually promote them for recognitions such as these and not just for radio play).

I’m starting to feel like Kanye West after tonight: completely HOPEFUL for the state of music.  Of course, maybe the whole Egyptian Revolution has everyone seeking change in every arena. 🙂

Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone, and especially all my love for the sweetest most awesome “Valentine” there is: our lovely David Archuleta. Here’s my special tribute to our favorite balladeer from another awesome balladeer coming off of Idol:


Posted on February 14, 2011, in awards, music. Bookmark the permalink. 19 Comments.

  1. From the previous thread, Joymus, congratulations on your second performance with Andrea Bocelli. Also, congrats to HG on receiving a tweet from Melinda Doolittle. I had not heard of Esperanza Spalding before last night; from that video, she’s very talented.

    Below is a tweet from Chris Brown re. the Grammys; he’s addressing fans who were upset that he wasn’t there. I’m blocking out his curse words. I had to post this because David may have elected to skip the Grammys for the reason Chris states. Chris has since deleted this tweet from his timeline.

    @chrisbrown: “To all the fans!! I love y’all. Don’t be upset!! This industry is based on politics and a$$kissing! My only concern is team breezy! F*** everybody else!”

    • Drat, how do you relate CB’s tweet to David not being there? I’m not sure I follow.

      • While their circumstances were different (i.e., Chris was banned because Rihanna was there), I think David skipped the Grammys because he doesn’t care for the politics associated with these events. Lots of fans were tweeting Melinda that he should have been there, he’s underappreciated, etc. I think David would tell us not to be upset. While Chris uses the “F” would to showcase his arrogance, perhaps David would have modestly said “this is my time and I prefer to spend it with family and friends. If you don’t like it, that’s unfortunate.”

    • I agree that David probably feels uncomfortable at these types of events. Very few of these artists seem “real”. Everything is about gimmicks with the top stars, it seems. I certainly hope it’s not because he doesn’t feel he belongs.

      While, I agreed with him not going to Bieber’s premiere, I’m not so sure he should snub the Grammys. Afterall, Nikki Minaj was there! This was his chance to ask for that duet he’s been talking about 🙂

      Happy Valentine’s Day to you all!

    • I just want to clarify that David very well could have had something better to do. Of course, that’s his right. In the interest of his career, though, I would hope that he doesn’t stay away from these events just because he’s not comfortable. Then again, what do I know? lol It’s hard to say what he really wants out of all this.

  2. I am so excited that Esperanza won. I had not heard of her but she is so talented. Love that tweet from Chris Brown. It is so true.

  3. HI! Seeing that Esperanza won gives me hope for David, that he will be recognized when the time is right. He is just beginning his career and discovering where he wants to go with it. He is paying his dues. With all of his hard work, determination and talent he will find success. And I don’t mean that in a way of….”look at me” but in a way of gaining respect from the industry and making a mark for good in the world.

    Desertrat, I agree. Davids time will come and he had other priorities this weekend. that’s all.

  4. I was pleased to hear of Arcade Fire’s win last night! “The Suburbs” is a great concept album with solid writing. Nice that the ceremony recognized artistry instead of all the gimmicks as of late to make up for lack of talent.

  5. I was thrilled that Esperanza won!! Also the Arcade fire band and Lady Antebellum. I also was happy for Soul Sister singers as it appeared they were thankful for their comeback I too thought this might be a sign that the focus was on talent vs spectacle.
    Maybe there is hope for David being recognized some day. I’m sure David’s decision was a positive one and had very little to do with anyone else. Love Melinda’s Funny Valentine.
    Happy Valentine’s Day.

  6. I could not wait to visit Soul David today because I knew you (hg) would comment on the Grammys and that your comments would capture the event and its potential implication for the music industry. I have wondered if there was a growing backlash regarding the value of theatrics over talent and last nights winners gave me hope that this might be true.

    Appreciated your take on last nights show. I always enjoy your sassy way with words.

    • Thanks, CAS! 🙂

      A few things worth noting: Esperanza Spalding’s latest album is in the top 10 on iTunes, and so is Arcade Fire’s The Suburbs. These things matter, don’t they? 😆

  7. Hooray for Justin Bieber’s label not being able to buy him a Grammy!

  8. Yes, it’s great when talent win over commercial pop. Now, it’d be cool if radio stations and the labels think the same.
    I watched all the performances on youtube and Janelle Monae was really great !

    Ciara explained her situation to her fans in her facebook :

    Now, reread what she wrote and switch the names. It’s like David could have wrote it. I don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes but it seems really similar to David’s situation right now.

  9. This is a little off topic. But just thinkin… What sets David apart from all other artists is his ability to change up a melody and improvise… I don’t mean jazz. ..but just the way he handled Bubbly with the scat section, or the “na na na na’ part in My Hands at Delta Fair, or the beginning of Works For Me in Reno. We hear those kinds of things in concerts, but we don’t hear it on the albums. David’s voice is the best, his tone, diction and perfect pitch can’t be matched, but his genius comes in his ability to change up the melody and improvise. His soulful, bluesy, smokey music is what sets up apart. Then you add the emotion he spills our in performances and no one can touch him. Would be awesome if David could do some soul/pop on an album and blow everyone away like we have seen him do. Much of the mainstream has not seen this genius in David.

  10. PS sorry for the typos! LOL!

  11. Two of the latino contestants on Idol said David is their favorite American Idol 🙂


    (The 3rd and 5th video)

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