For a retired music educator, I am woefully out of touch with current music. When I was still teaching, my students kept me very aware of what was going on in the music industry, especially during tryouts for the the school talent show. Now I hardly recognize half of the performers out there.
This year’s Grammy Awards air on February 5. That gives me five weeks to explore some of the nominees. I’ll share what I find out.
Today we’ll view the nominees for Best Music Video. I had not seen any of these before yesterday.
I love Adele. But this video distracts me from the music. How long are Adele’s fingernails? And why doesn’t she stop the car and pick up all the sheet music blowing around? Even if she’s running away from her past, that’s no excuse for littering. “Easy On Me,” performed by Adele. Xavier Dolan, video director; Xavier Doan & Nancy Grant, video producers.
BTS is adorable, and I usually enjoy watching them, but again I found the video detracting from the music. It seems like they all stood around looking for that most beautiful moment that was yet to come. Kudos for the use of Korean + English. “Yet to Come,” performed by BTS. Yong Seok Choi, video director; Tiffany Suh, video producer.
Okay, I take it back; Adele’s fingernails are not nearly as scary as Doja Cat’s. When she’s singing and not rapping, we get to hear her beautiful voice. However, it’s overshadowed by the sexy costumes and poses and several unfortunate words. I wanted to like this video, but how can I when it objectifies women? “Woman,” performed by Doja Cat. Child., video director; Missy Galanida, Sam Houston, Michelle Larkin & Isaac Rice, video producers.
My first thought as this next video began was “Not for me.” But as it continued, I was drawn in as Lamar’s image changed appearance. I recognized OJ, Kanye, and Will Smith, but I don’t understand the point. Maybe subsequent viewings will help me comprehend. “The Heart Part 5, performed by Kendrick Lamar. Dave Free & Kendrick Lamar, video directors; Jason Baum & Jamie Rabineau, video producers.
This is the first of the nominees to click with me. The song and the video complement each other and the idea that things change and people drift apart. However, no solution is offered. I guess that will be the job of another song and video. “As It Was,” performed by Harry Styles. Tanu Muino, video director; Frank Borin, Ivanna Borin, Fred Bonham Carter & Alexa Haywood, video producers.
Okay, this is it—this is the one that should win the Grammy. In my opinion, Taylor Swift is a genius, and that will become more and more apparent in the coming years. She has taken a breakup song and woven it into a 15-minute story. I know this is long, but bear with me. And I’m going to apologize now for making you listen to a conversation in which every sentence includes the word f*cking. I hate it, but that’s the way a lot of people talk. “All Too Well: The Short Film,” song performed by Taylor Swift. Taylor Swift, video director; Saul Germaine, video producer.
After I saw the film, I was obsessed with it, and found some related videos on YouTube, including this “behind the scenes” one that shows Swift directing:
and this video of Swift telling Jimmy Fallon about writing the original song and the video. I’ve jumped it up three minutes to cut out some unrelated chitchat:
Now it’s your turn. So, what do you think? Do you agree that “All Too Well: The Short Film” deserves the Grammy for Best Music Video? Or do you prefer one of the other nominees? Why? Share your thoughts in the comments.