The Farr Side: Grammy preview, part 2: A look at Record and Song of the Year
The 60th annual Grammy Awards ceremony will be held Jan. 28.
Throughout the year, I do my best to think of what will be considered a Grammy contender. The nominees this time have me scratching my head. It’s definitely a different mix, or it may be that age is finally catching up with me.
Record and Song of the Year are categories that often confuse people. They are not the same award, thus why the nominees often differ between the two.
Record of the Year is given to the artist and the producer. It’s basically for the polished product, or record.
In the past, Record of the Year honors have gone to such singles as “Mack The Knife,” “Hotel California,” “Bette Davis Eyes,” “We Are The World,” “Wing Beneath My Wings,” “Rolling In The Deep” and “Uptown Funk.” As you can tell by those past winners, there was a distinct reason why the singles were selected. They are tracks that stand the test of time.
This year, Grammy voters have selected “Redbone” (Childish Gambino), “Despacito” (Luis Fonsi, Daddy Yankee, Justin Bieber), “The Story of O.J.” (Jay-Z), “Humble” (Kendrick Lamar), and “24K Magic” (Bruno Mars).
I can see why “Despacito” and “24K Magic” made the list. The others, not so much. “Despacito” was the year’s biggest No. 1 and “24K Magic” is pure Bruno all the way. The Grammys love Bruno Mars and he never seems to disappoint.
“Despacito” may not have been as big of a hit, had it not been remixed to include Bieber. However, the song was well-crafted, which is what the award is for. My hope is that “24K Magic” pulls off the win.
Song of the Year is a songwriter’s award. Here, the Grammys award the best-written song of the past year.
Song of the Year winners have included such gems as “Bridge Over Troubled Water,” “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face,” “Every Breath You Take,” “From A Distance,” “Streets Of Philadelphia,” “My Heart Will Go On,” “Dance With My Father,” “Thinking Out Loud” and “Hello.“
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see why songs such as these have won Song of the Year. They are all brilliantly written and harbor awesome emotion. That’s why it’s a songwriter’s award.
But this year’s nominees do not compare to previous years. Nominees include “Despacito,” “4:44,” “Issues,” “1-800-273-8255,” and “That’s What I Like.” See what I mean? Not one of these will be remembered the way some past winners were.
It may be easier to decipher these by artist as most were partly co-written by the artist except for Jay-Z’s “4:44.”
My hope is that Bruno Mars can pull off a victory for “That’s What I Like.” At least, it was a song that ... I like.
— David T. Farr can be reached at email@example.com. You also can find The Farr Side on Facebook.