Monday, February 01, 2010

Lil Wayne, Eminem & Drake Perfrom "Drop the World" and "Forever" at the Grammys

After receiving info from a hidden source a lil after 9pm last night that Lil Wayne and Eminem were going to perform Drop the World live at the Grammys, I instantly became glued to the set in anticipation. Even better, it was supposed to be followed by Forever, which would add to the mix the #1 draft pick in the land, Drizzy Drake.

About a month ago, I raved about how epic of a collaboration Lil Wayne and Eminem turned Drop the World into and last night I wasn't the least bit let down after watching them perform it live.

I do have a lot to say about last night at the Grammys, mostly centering around said performance so here goes...

First off, I couldn't agree more with many of the points David D over at The Smoking Section, a blog I frequent daily (they have over 14 million views in 5 years for good reason and it's not just because TSS contributor MZ bleeds the same Scarlet and Gray as ya boy), made about the performance.

The first and most glaring observation had to do with the annoying censorship overkill done by CBS in a desperate CYA attempt. Evidently I wasn't the only one who felt this, as many others were also upset at the 10 second at a time bleeps during the almost sounded like they were trying to make it seem as if there were serious technical difficulties, like some fat guy had literally fallen on the bleep button and couldn't find a way to get off of it. To illustrate my point, directly below I'm going to post the "uncensored version" of the performance, which is PG-13 at worst since Lil Wayne, Eminem and Drake all made concerted efforts to personally edit their own words before CBS aggressively muted them.

Why CBS would willingly make the last performance of the night, which is generally saved for the biggest and most anticipated act, a mute fest that relies on visual rather than sound is beyond me and came off as such a "safe move" that I wanted to get sick. I will applaud whoever planned the Grammy's for being smart enough (hmm why smart? $$$) to make this performance the closing act and thus recognizing that this form of music is now the second most consumed form of music behind Rock (when Rap & R&B are combined to make Hip Hop). Which then brings me to my next beef with the whole dog and pony show that the Grammy's has become.

I'm going to borrow David D's words a bit and second his notion that the Grammy's have become borderline exploitation of the genre of Hip Hop. How is that you might ask? 1) No Hip Hop albums were even nominated for Album of the Year. 2) Most of the Hip Hop awards were given off camera.

On top of that, David D put it best by saying:

"But Heavenly Lord almighty in a kangaroo pouch, nobody on this planet is going to convince me that Taylor Swift had the best album of the year and should be winning the same awards Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder won before her. Going from Thriller to Fearless is like having sex with Halle Berry then doing anal with Star Jones’ liposucked fat juices."
-David D of TSS

A little graphic with the anal-ogy but funny and true nonetheless. Unfortunately, Hip Hop is still too "vulgar" and "risky" to be given it's fair due at music's most celebrated award show, but I guess if you want to take a positive outlook on the situation it's better to be whored out to the masses in an attempt to gain ratings than to be completely slept on and not talked about.

Aside from all that venting and criticism of the Grammy's I was still extremely proud of how well the three artists Drake, Eminem and Lil Wayne absolutely held down the whole Hip Hop game to the fullest. When you hear stories about how Eminem approached Drake at rehearsal, offering him support in undoubtedly the biggest show he's ever performed, everything surrounding the performance ending up generating a lot of positivity for the culture as a whole. The fact that a seasoned industry legend like Eminem would go out of his way to give the rookie rising star some advice like a Senior on the basketball team would be to the All American Freshman before playing in the National Championship made me feel like all these different generations of Hip Hop are coming together a bit and lookin' out for each other. Really helps when you can look across the stage at someone who has been there before and is unphased by the moment and gain strength from their mere presence.

Travis Barker gave the performance a shot of life on the drums, Lil Wayne brought the energy, Eminem was on point with every word...and I mean every when I say it, and Drake was able to have that kid in a candy store, I made it moment where for the first time he was able to perform in front of millions of people...and it was evident with his ear to ear smile of being in the moment at the end of the performance...word is bond, I got a chill watchin' it.

My only hope is that next year we get a little bit of fair representation from the Grammy's so Hip Hop can become less of a side piece and more of a wifey or girl you'd take home to meet mom and dad. Follow me?


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