The 2014 Grammy’s went off with a bang tonight. But the biggest music event of the year raised bigger issues this year. Rather than being all about the music, the Grammy’s made a very blatant political statement on their stance on the issue of gay marriage: they are very much in favour of it!
It should come as no surprise that an industry with a heavy gay and lesbian community should support the cause for equal rights to the homosexual community. Artistic stars are openly gay, and his has rarely affected their support from fans, and certainly hasn’t had any impact on their musical abilities. Think of such greats as Freddie Mercury! It seems the world is just catching up with the entertainment industry in its tolerance of people of all sexual persuasions.
The night saw Queen Latifah officiate 33 marriages. The rap star was temporarily granted a licence to officiate marriages by the Californian State Government. Not too discriminate, there were also straight couples who were married by the star. The marriages took a on a gimmicky aspect though, as the backdrop to the marriages, as the backdrop to the stage was a mock cathedral.
Of course, it must have been exciting for the couples to be wed by one celebrity, and have another world famous star serenade them simultaneously. Madonna did the honours of singing during the celebration. The custom song Same Love by Ryan Lewis was wrote specifically for the purpose (although Madonna didn’t do a superb job of signing it). With lyrics such as:
“The right-wing conservatives think it’s a decision / and you can be cured with some treatment and religion… Its human rights for everybody, there is no difference”
It is not hard to see the organizers took every opportunity possible to make a statement. This was aimed at right-wing politicians who condemn gay marriage and gay rights. However, the campaign didn’t; stop there as the final line of the song targets religious institutions, particularly Christian, with a biblical quote. The inclusion of “love is patient, love is kind” quotation from 1 Corinthians, a Bible passage popular at Christian weddings, acts as a reminder to the religious groups who do not recognise state gay marriages, that all love is equal, and you should not discriminate against homosexual love. Although this was all quite ironic, as the song was sung by a star that once used a lesbian kiss with fellow pop star Britney Spears in order to garner attention.
Elsewhere on the night, the awards continued, combined with some exciting performances from unexpected stars. Surviving Beatles member Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr graced the stage with a performance during the wedding also. The pair won a Lifetime Achievement Award thanks to their contributions to music.
The greatest achievers of the night were rap artists Macklemore and musician daft Punk, who each won four awards. Macklemore also walked away with Best New Artist, thanks to the release of their best-selling platinum first single Thrift Shop. The 2013 single sold over seven million copies, and is currently ranked as the 13th most watched video on YouTube. This one song also lent itself to the srtist winning Best Rap Song, and Ryan Lewis winning Best Rap Performance. The pair managed to win over controversial category entrant Ed Sheeran and James Blake, a very promising start to 2014 for the duo.
The Grammy’s are the most prestigious music awards that can be won, but this year brought an exciting new element that hasn’t been seen since its creation in 1959; musicians using their influence and power to petition for equal rights.