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And the Grammy Goes to...Who?

By Gloria Diaz

Check out Gloria's Blog — Edge of Gloria!

Fort Wayne Reader

2012-03-01


I think I’ve reached old age. Not “old” old age, but the beginning of old age. How did I come to this realization? I watched the Grammys and recognized only a few people: Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, Adele, Paul McCartney, and perhaps just a few others. The music wasn’t inspiring. And the tribute to the Beach Boys I thought fell flat. No one can harmonize like the Beach Boys, and they should have just shoved all those other groups out of the way and let loose.

I have to admit I’d heard very little of the music up for awards. I only seem to find out about new music when I am watching television, or via the movies or if I’m somewhere where there’s a radio on. A radio, of course, that’s tuned to current hits.

I read somewhere that the music we listen to in our teens sticks with us the longest. I sort of agree with that, but I think I enjoy music that represents a decade or time that was pleasant for me. So I get a huge kick out of 70s funk, 80s dance hits and 90s alternative. I was never a fan of heavy metal or grunge, but there was plenty of other stuff that I enjoyed from the last couple decades. Thanks to the internet, I can log on and go to the Muzak website and find out the name of whatever song is playing on the public address system at work. That one song I’ve wondered about for years is no longer a mystery. I never knew that Toad the Wet Sprocket sang “All I Want,” a mellow, yet catchy song that to me screams “90s.”

I was happy Adele won all those awards, but I wonder what influence the death of Amy Winehouse has had on her popularity. The first song I heard by Adele was at work and I was convinced I was hearing Ms. Winehouse. If anything, “Blue-eyed soul” is getting more popular, but if Amy were still alive, would Adele be as well known? How many female Blue-eyed soul singers can the market support? I’m probably one of the few people left who hasn’t bought 21, Adele’s album. And I probably won’t. I’m extremely poor right now, and I’ve become thankful for YouTube, which means that any song I want to listen to, even slightly obscure house music that no one I know has ever heard of, is available within seconds. That includes the theme from “This Week in Baseball,” a majestic, violin heavy piece reminiscent of “Appalachian Spring.” And the old-school Olympic theme before John Williams (love him, really do) put his own spin on it and let me down.

And I can’t write this column without mentioning Whitney Houston. I feel sorry for her, and felt that hooking up with Bobby Brown perhaps wasn’t the best choice for her. She also seemed to be in denial about her drug use, and that’s always a bad sign. Karen Carpenter, who had the best voice of any woman in pop music, denied having problems with an eating disorder when interviewed by a British journalist. I saw pictures of Whitney when she looked terrible; a wealthy street person who was also an addict. Carpenter also couldn’t hide the fact that she looked incredibly old at an early age, and that she was a skeleton to boot. Music is a hazardous business. Funny, even though these women were loved by millions, they still had problems.

It all seems to come full circle, however. Just as I was clueless about Bon Iver and The Band Perry, Buzzfeed shared a bunch of tweets starting with “who the f--- is Paul McCartney?” It’s really kind of scary that for some people, Paul McCartney is in that band that grandpa likes so much. And to think The Beatles were once more popular than Jesus.

You know, the guy in the manger?

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