The Grammys 2022


Anderson .Paak (left) and Bruno Mars (right) form the duo Silk Sonic, and they “swept” during the Grammys, which means that they won every award that they were nominated for.

After being pushed back from its original date of January 1st of 2022, the 64th Grammy Awards were held on April 3rd at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. The night featured performances from Billie Ellish, Lil Nas X with Jack Harlow, BTS, Silk Sonic, Olivia Rodgrigo, Lady Gaga, Nas, H.E.R and John Legend.
The competition for the awards themselves were equally as talented. Billie Ellish, Lil Nas X, Kanye, Olivia Rodgrigo, Doja Cat, TaylorSwift, Jon Bastille, H.E.R, and Tony Bennett/Lady Gaga all were in the running for album of the year, with notable albums such as Happier Than Ever, MONTERO, Donda, Planet Her and SOUR being up for the award. In the end, Jon Bastille took home the award with his album We Are.
Many of the same artists were also nominated for Record of the Year, Lil Nas X’s “MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)”, Oliva Rodgiro’s “drivers license,” Billie Ellish’s “Happier Than Ever”, Doja Cat’s “Kiss Me More”, H.E.R’s “Fight For You”, Justin Bieber’s “Peaches”, along with other songs like “I Still Have Faith In Your” by ABBA, “Freedom” by Jon Bastille, Silk Sonic’s “Leave The Door Open”, Alicia Keys “A Beautiful Noise”, and Brandi Charlie’s “Right On Time.” In the end, “Leave The Door Open” walked away with the Grammy.
Despite not winning either of those awards, Olivia Rodgrigo won three Grammys: Best New Artist, Best Pop Solo Performance, and Best Pop Vocal Album. In contrast, and to the shock of many, Billie Ellish, Taylor Swift and Lil Nas X won no awards this year, despite each artist releasing highly-acclaimed albums and singles.
Going into more specific categories, Taylor Eigisti’s Tree Falls won Best Contemporary Album. “Make A Fire” by the Foo Fighters won best Rock Performance, who also received a Grammy for Best Rock Song with “Waiting For A War” and Best Rock Album with Medicine At Midnight. This comes after the death of the band’s drummer Taylor Hawkins last month. St. Vincent’s Daddy’s Home won Best Alternative Album of the Year. Jazmine Sullivins’s Heaux Tales won Best R&B Album of the Year. Bo Burnham won the Grammy for Best Song Written For A Visual Media with “All Eyes On Me” from his critically acclaimed musical/comedy special Inside on Netflix.
The most notable wins of the Grammy’s came from the band Silk Sonic, a team-up project between Anderson Paak and Bruno Mars. Along with winning Record Of The Year for “Leave The Door Open,” the song also won Song Of The Year, Best R&B Song, and tied with Jazmine Sullivin’s “Pick Up Your Feelings” for Best R&B Performance.
Rap also had a very competitive year, as Kendrick Lemar/Baby Keem, Tyler The Creator, Kanye, Drake, J. Cole, Nas, Lil Nas X, and Doja Cat all released projects this year, with Baby Keem and Kendrick Lamar winning Best Rap Performance for their collaboration track “family ties.” And while he was originally nominated, due to a conflict with The Weeknd being kicked from the 2021’s Grammy because of his decision to perform at the Super Bowl, Drake refused his nominations for the year. This brought the title for Rap Album of The Year down to Call Me If You Get Lost by Tyler, The Creator, Donda by Kanye West, King Diesease’s II by Nas and The Off-Season by J-Cole. Ultimately, Call Me If You Get Lost won the award, with Kanye winning Best Rap Song for “Jail” and Best Melodic Rap Performance with “Hurricane,” featuring The Weeknd and Lil Baby.
On top of his awards, Kanye was scheduled to perform at the Grammys, ending his boycott due his 2012 album, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, not being nominated for Album Of The Year. However, he was cut from performing due to his recent online harassment of Kim Kadashian and Pete Davidson after his divorce from Kim late last year.
This wasn’t the only controversy that occurred this year with the nominees. Louis C.K, who has pleaded guilty to several sexual assult charges brought up against him, won Best Comedy Album for his album Sincierly. Dave Ceppelle was nominated Best Spoken-Word Album for 8:46 after stating he wouldn’t apologize for transphobic comments he’d made in the past. Singer Marylin Manson, who has been accused by several people of sexual abuse, inclduing an 18 year old he dated when he was 36, was nominated for several Grammys, including one for his work on “Donda.”
There was also debate among some perceived snubs of the ceremony, including the lack of awards for BTS, Lucy Dacus and Taylor Swift. Other artists, like Bo Burnham, Megan Thee Stallion and Miley Cirus were believed to have deserved more nominations for their work.
However, one of the most impactful moments of the night came from a performance. John Legend, mentioned earlier, dedicated his performance to the current conflict in Ukraine, debuting a new song called “Free” in honor of those who are stuck in the conflict. Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the current president of Ukraine, spoke before Legend’s performance. “Our musicians wear body armor instead of tuxedos. They sing to the wounded in hospitals, even to those who can’t hear them. But the music will break through anyway. We defend our freedom to live, to love, to sound.”
As another season of the Grammys comes to an end, it’s important to take a step back. Win or lose, snubbed or overhyped, the most important part of music isn’t what’s awarded, it’s the impact that it had on the people who listen to them.