Grammys and Academy Awards (and the drama in-between)

ALICE THOMPSON

If you’re like me, then you’re completely out of the loop when it comes to pop culture. Luckily for me, the Grammys and the Academy Awards (both in February) give insight to what the rest of the world is interested in.

The Grammy (originally called the Gramophone Award) is an accolade by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS) of the United States to recognize recent achievements in the music industry. There are four “general field” awards, which are not restricted by genre. These awards include Album of the Year, Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and (what’s considered the most coveted award) Best New Artist. Other Awards are given for performance and production in specific genre, as well as contributions such as artwork and video. In total there are 78 award categories (wow!).

So you may be wondering: how does one actually get to win a Grammy? Nominations are made by record companies and anyone online on the Grammy website, and then the group of NARAS members vote on which of these musicians they believe should be actually nominated. Once final nominees have been determined, final voting ballots are sent to Recording Academy members, who may vote in general fields and in other fields based on their own professions. Voters are required to vote on quality alone, and not to be influenced by sales, chart performance, personal relationships, or company loyalty.

This years winners of the four general field awards are:

Record of the Year
Sam Smith – “Stay With Me (Darkchild Version)”
Song of the Year
Sam Smith – “Stay With Me (Darkchild Version)”
Album of the Year
Beck – Morning Phase
Best New Artist
Sam Smith

Now we will address some of the drama surrounding this years Grammy’s ceremony. You may or may have not have heard but as Beck received his award for Album of the Year, Kanye West interrupted him on stage, said nothing, and sat down. This may seem like nothing but in fact Mr. West was making a reference to himself in 2009, interrupting another musician Taylor Swift for receiving an award that he seemed to think she did not deserve. This may seem disrespectful and crude, to tell another artist their art doesn’t deserve an award, but in the past Kanye himself has shown it’s in his own nature to give up his own awards. In 2011 Kanye West gave up his Best Music Video Award to UGK and OutKast at the BET Hip Hop awards, and in 2008 he gave up his Grammy Award for Best Album of the Year to Amy Winehouse and Mark Rohson.

Up Next: We have the Academy awards ceremony, which is an American awards ceremony honoring cinematic achievements in the film industry. Unknown to most there are seven types of annual awards presented by the Academy, and the Oscar is one of them (and obviously the most popular). It is a small statue made of gold-plated britannium on black metal base, and depicts a knight rendered in an art deco style holding a crusader’s sword standing on a reel of film with five spokes. The five spokes represent the original branches of the academy: Actors, Writers, Directors, Producers, and Technicians. Now, the awards have expanded to 24 categories.

Our winners in the main categories this year are:

Best Picture

Birdman

Actor in a Leading Role

Eddie Redmayne as Stephen Hawking in “The Theory of Everything”

Actress in a Leading Role

Julianne Moore as a woman struggling with Alzheimer’s in “Still Alice”

Actor in a Supporting Role

J.K Simmons as a sadistic music teacher in “Whiplash”

Actress in a Supporting Role

Patricia Arquette as the mother in “Boyhood”

Best Director

Alejandro G. Iñárritu as the director of “Birdman”

In total, Birdman and Grand Budapest Hotel tied for most Oscars, bringing in four each. However, Birdman was said to be the winner of the night because they brought in the coveted Best Director Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay awards.

`There wasn’t so much drama of the night as there was activism. When Eddie Redmayne accepted his award for best actor in a leading role he said, “This Oscar belongs to all of those people around the world battling ALS. It belongs to one exceptional family. I will be its custodian and I will promise you I will look after him.”

Then Patricia Arquette, in her acceptance speech, stated: “”To every woman who gave birth, to every taxpayer and citizen of this nation, we have fought for everybody else’s equal rights. It’s our time to have wage equality once and for all and equal rights for women in the United States of America.”

Images from this article provided by Google Images

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