Since last year’s Grammys, my kids have started engaging with current music. Everyone has their own iPod, with the choice to listen to whatever music they feel like. I feel like I haven’t been this aware of what is happening with music since the ’80s.
We all sat down to watch and cheer for our favorites. We were all pulling for Adele, some wishing for Skrillex to win best new artist, others wishing Taylor Swift would stop singing…pretty much the full range of musical tastes and opinions.
Reflecting on last night, I had a few take-aways. The first is that I love that my family is into music. Music is such a huge part of my story, and it matters a bunch that my kids can enjoy and appreciate good music.
The second thing that struck me was how much I appreciated the authenticity of the people who performed. I felt like the producers matched each artist’s style and feel. Chris Brown’s cool video cubes, and the flying squirrel dancers really seemed to fit. I can guarantee that he wasn’t actually singing, but it didn’t seem like that was what mattered most for that element. The Foo Fighters bringing some rock and roll to the parking lot was the perfect thing.
From a production standpoint, I thought they did a nice job of being true to each performance: The Civil Wars, Jennifer Hudson, Cold Play, Katy Perry. The treatment was different for each one and never upstaged the performance, but enhanced what the artists were doing. For me personally, there were some things I loved and others I could do without, but each one seemed to represent the music and the art the way it was intended to.
It was a good reminder for me to use production to enhance an element, and not to overpower it. Maybe there will someday be a place for human ice sculptures surrounded by flames at church, but until that day, I’ll keep striving for matching the level of production with the intent of each element.