Grammy Backstage Report
Here’s what the stars had to say backstage at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards, held at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on Sunday night:
— Daft Punk let their music do the talking for them throughout the night. The helmet-wearing French electronic duo won four awards, including album of the year, for Random Access Memories, and record of the year and best pop/duo group performance, for “Get Lucky.”
They didn’t speak on stage or backstage. Their collaborator Nile Rodgers explained to reporters the group can speak English well, but they were staying true to their characters.
Rodgers said he was stunned by all of the wins he and Daft Punk piled up. Before the ceremony, he said, he was simply looking forward to performing with Daft Punk, Pharrell Williams and Stevie Wonder, and wasn’t thinking about bringing any hardware home with him.
— Macklemore & Ryan Lewis also won four awards — best new artist and best rap album, for The Heist, among them — but they were especially proud of the wedding that was held during their performance of their gay rights anthem “Same Love” alongside Madonna and Mary Lambert. Among those who tied the knot in front of marriage officiant Queen Latifah: Lewis’ sister.
Lewis said, “I still have chills now….It was amazing to work with Madonna, to work with Queen Latifah, two legends. The whole thing’s just been a ride.”
Macklemore made sure to thank the Grammy organizers for allowing them the opportunity to spread their message of “same love.” He commented, “Ten years ago, I don’t think that a song like ‘Same Love’ would have been embraced on this level by any mainstream media, and the fact that radio got behind it, the fact that television got behind it, that award shows got behind it, it’s a testament to where we’re headed in this country.”
— Latifah was proud to play a role in the wedding, in part because she had a couple of friends who were involved. She declared, “To be able to do something special for people, to be able to change someone’s life…I am so thankful to be a part of that, you have no idea.”
— Recording Academy CEO and president Neil Portnow said the wedding was the result of discussions with Macklemore & Ryan Lewis that began months ago, exploring how they could participate on the telecast. He said, “Our object is always to take our stage and make it available to creative people, to express their feelings, their emotions, their thoughts. And we’re very proud of what we did tonight.”
— Kacey Musgraves had a breakthrough night, thanks to her major-label debut release, Same Trailer Different Park, which captured best country album. One of the tracks from that disc, “Merry Go ‘Round,” was named best country song.
The 25-year-old said the last year has been “indescribable.” She compared it to a “fast roller coaster” in some respects, though she added that she and her team have put in a lot of hard work.
Musgraves noted that she brought her mother to the show, and had a funny exchange with her when the best country album category was announced. She recalled, “I heard Same Trailer Different Park, and I was like, ‘Damn, I didn’t get it…oh wait, that’s me!’ And she was like, ‘Go, get up there, that’s you!'”
— Black Sabbath‘s Grammy win for best hard rock/metal performance, for “God Is Dead,” is the cherry on top of what has been a successful reunion for them. In 2013, they toured the world and topped the U.S. album chart for the first time, with their release, 13.
Lead singer Ozzy Osbourne marveled, “It took us 45 years to get a number one [album] in America, which is, I’m in shock of it all. And now this….” He then tapped the Grammy trophy.
In an amusing moment, a reporter asked if Ozzy is a fan of Taylor Swift. His answer: “Yes, I’m a big fan of Taylor Swift. Who the [bleep] is Taylor Swift?”
— Darius Rucker has been in the country music game for a while, but he was still blown away by the fact that he was presented a Grammy in that genre on Sunday night. He said he was “over the moon” to take the Grammy in the best country solo performance category, for his cover of the Old Crow Medicine Show song “Wagon Wheel.” Darius thought Blake Shelton or Blake’s wife, Miranda Lambert, would win, because “you expect them to win everything.”
— Vampire Weekend playfully had revenge on their mind when they accepted the award for best alternative music album, for Modern Vampires of the City. It’s a category the band lost in 2011 to The Black Keys — and they saw their win on Sunday night as retribution, even if the Keys weren’t nominated this time around. They joked, “I don’t know if technically we can say we defeated them this time, but we did win something.”
— Zedd and Foxes both said they didn’t have a speech prepared when they received best dance recording honors for their hit collaboration, “Clarity.” Foxes said, “I went up there with gum in my mouth.”
— Actor/comedian Steve Martin confessed, “I never thought in my life I would get an award for songwriting.” Yet he and his musical partner Edie Brickell did before the Grammys telecast, claiming the prize for best American roots song, for “Love Has Come For You.” He pointed out that he and Brickell are workshopping a musical, Bright Star, which tells the “secret of a woman’s life” and jumps between 1945 and 1923.
— Presenter Kevin Hart dropped plugs for his movies Ride Along and About Last Night, and his TV series Real Husbands of Hollywood. After praising the Grammy performance of his former Real Husbands of Hollywood co-star Robin Thicke, Hart promised his show’s next season “only gets funnier” and tries to push the envelope.
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