Many of you disagreed with me that Alicia Keys was “the worst” part of the Grammys. Maybe I should correct myself – Keys was definitely one of the worst parts, just my opinion. Her narcissism drives me up a wall. But yes, arguably the worst part of this year’s Grammys was Jennifer Lopez being the “star” of the Motown tribute. It would be one – ill-advised – thing if Jennifer had just been one smallish part of a larger tribute with multiple singers and performers. But that’s not what happened. What happened was this cringe-inducing crap:
Some of us were like “this is on Grammy producers for even suggesting it” and some of us were like “yeah but Jennifer should have known better too, and she could have said no.” Everybody’s got some blame. And a sure sign that it really was that bad is that people are still talking about it days later. So much so that Jennifer had to address what happened, telling ET:
“The thing about music is that it inspires all. Any type of music can inspire any type of artist. You can’t tell people what to love. You can’t tell people what they can and can’t do, what they should sing or not sing. You gotta do what’s in your heart.”
She went on to say that Motown producer Berry Gordy, as well as producers of the awards show, were “thrilled” about her involvement. “They know how much I have been influenced by that music and so it was a natural fit for them.”
As for those critics? “That’s okay,” Lopez said to Entertainment Tonight. “I’m just very humbled and honored to be able to have sung those songs.”
“They know how much I have been influenced by that music and so it was a natural fit for them” – no, wait, what? In some sense, every artist that came after the Motown heyday was influenced by Motown. But mostly Jennifer carved out a corner in the straight pop music scene, with dance/electronica and hip-hop influences. Her music has never had any kind of Motown sound in way, shape or form. And please don’t make this about “what’s in your heart.” It’s easy enough to hear the Grammy producers’ ideas and say “you know what, I’m not the person to do this.”
Smokey Robinson thinks we’re stupid.
— Variety (@Variety) February 10, 2019
Photos courtesy of WENN.