2017 Grammy Nominations!

So the 2017 Grammy nominations came out a few days ago.  Normally, I’m counting down the days, and then spend the whole next week after the nominations come out digesting the results, then I try to get as many of the nominated albums as possible and try to listen to it all.

This year?

I completely forgot about the nominations.  I’ve been so busy with work and school that I just haven’t had time to care.  On the whole, I still like the notion of the Grammys because, in my opinion, they celebrate music and they work to celebrate all kinds of music.  Indeed, they are always creating new categories to accurately reflect the new genres coming out.  While I may not always agree with the nominees, I think it is at least a good attempt to bringing recognition to the importance of music.

This year, I got to say there were a lot of nominees that I didn’t see happening.  I mean, it was no surprise that Beyoncé and Adele got so many nominations, but I didn’t think Justin Bieber would ever get an Album of the Year nod.  Purpose did really well for Bieber these past few years, so it’s not surprising, it just unlike the Grammys.  I was pleasantly surprised by Mike Posner’s Song of the Year nomination for “I Took a Pill in Ibiza” – the song, particularly the original, is incredible vulnerable and beautiful, and I would love to see it win.  However, my bet is it’s either “Hello” that will win or “Formation.”

Anyway, I guess we’ll just have to wait and see who will win – if I remember!

You can view the full list of nominees here.

A Year in the Life

Finally.  After almost ten years, Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, the revival of the hit television show, was released on Netflix.  And, yes, on the day of the release, I woke up at 6 a.m. to binge watch the whole series.  I got to say, it was incredible.

 

The amazing thing about the show is that it’s as though no time has elapsed.  The writing is as snappy as ever, and each actor captured their character perfectly – you’d think after all that time, one of them would waiver in their performance.  But every performance was perfect.  In particular, Kelly Bishop’s performance of Emily Gilmore was Emmy and Golden Globe worthy, as was Liza Weil’s Paris Geller.

One thing I noticed in the second episode, “Spring,” Lorelai is talking about her relationship ship and she says she was married to Rory’s dad but got divorced because “it was never supposed to happen.  It was always supposed to be Luke.”  The interesting thing is Lorelai got married in the seventh season, the season Amy Sherman-Palladino (ASP), the creator, was not working on the show – she left due to contractual disputes.  This revival gave ASP the chance to end the show she had intended.  I read an article where ASP and her husband Daniel Palladino said they’d probably would’ve ended the show in the seventh season anyway, but they would’ve “done it better.”  So, I was thinking perhaps Lorelai’s comment that her marriage was never supposed to happen was literally ASP stating the marriage was never supposed to happen – when ASP was forced to leave the show, the network took the show down a road that wasn’t right.

Anyway, Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life is absolutely incredible – if you aren’t a Gilmore Girls fan, you will be soon!

2017 Record of the Year Nominations Prediction

The 2017 Grammy nominations announcement is just a few weeks away – December 14th – so here are yet more of my predictions, this time for Record of the Year:

  • “Hello” – Adele
  • “7 Years” – Lukas Graham
  • “Can’t Stop the Feeling” – Justin Timberlake
  • “Cheap Thrills” – Sia featuring Sean Paul
  • “Closer” – The Chainsmokers featuring Halsey

Hell NO

I’ve been meaning to write this for a while, but I’m really digging Ingrid Michaelson’s new song “Hell No” (although, at this point, how new is it?).  The empowerment and attitude of the song is really what makes it stand out – you don’t need someone (specially a jerk) to feel validated.  The boldness of the chorus matched with the vocal accents of “I get it” and “whatever” makes the song pop.

Lindsey Stirling

Every time I listen to Lindsey Stirling’s music, I can’t help but think “that’s such a friggin good idea.”  Stirling is a violinist, but instead of playing typical classical music, she plays more EDM, dubstep music.  It’s so out of the box and epic.  Take a listen of these songs from her latest album Brave Enough:

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

This past weekend I went and saw Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.  Now, I’m a huge Harry Potter fan.  I’ve read every book and seen each movie probably seventeen trillion times.  But when J.K. Rowling announced the trilogy (now a five-party movie series) of Fantastic Beasts, I was skeptical.  I mean, the “book” that the films are based off is basically a novelty item for fans that lists out a bunch of made up magical creatures – there is no plot or story in it.  I wasn’t exactly sure how Rowling could make it into a multi-part movie franchise.  But, being the loyal fan I am, I went to see it.

And, my gosh, what a good plan that was.


The film tells the story of Newt Scamander, magical zoologist and researcher for the Ministry of Magic.  Newt travels from London to America in a quest to release a beast he discovered back into its natural habitat in Arizona (that bit was confusing to me too).  Along his travels, his magical briefcase full of all the beasts he discovers is opened by a muggle (or, as the Americans apparently refer to the, No-Mag) and the beasts are lost in New York.  Newt quickly is joined by said muggle along with an ex-auror and her sister to track the animals down, along with stopping Grindelwald (the Voldemort of the ’40s).  The film has the right amount of action – will make you laugh and cry, it’s such a great film.  You don’t need to be a Harry Potter fan to enjoy it.

2017 Best New Artist Grammy Predictions – Updated

We’re one month away from the 2017 Grammy nominations being announced, so I thought I’d share my predictions – it’s fun for me and sometimes I’m weirdly accurate.  One year I correctly guessed all the nominees for Record of the Year and I was 90% accurate on the other main categories (not that I’m bragging).

Anyway…

I know I already written about my predictions for Best New Artist, but I think that was a bit premature – at the time I didn’t realize that some of the following artists could be nominated.  So below is an updated list of artists (in no particular order) who I believe could/should get nominated (not that the people in the last shouldn’t be nominated, but I think these artists have greater odds of getting nominated).

Kelsea Ballerini

 

Halsey

 

Twenty One Pilots

 

Alessia Cara

 

Maren Morris

 

Rachel Platten

 

Personally, I think Twenty One Pilots, Halsey, and Maren Morris have the greatest chance of being nominated considering each made huge waves in their respective genres.  Twenty One Pilots had a huge year with their hits “Stressed Out,” “Ride,” and “Heathens,” it’s almost likely they’ll get nominated.  Halsey’s break out with Badlands and her new take on alt-electronic-pop deserves a nod.  Maren Morris’ Hero is one of the biggest country albums this year, and she recently was nominated for a lot of big CMA awards (i.e. she has critical acclaim).

Kelsea Ballerini likewise made similar splashes in country music like Morris, but I’m hesitant to think she’ll be nominated because her album The First Time was released outside the Grammy period.  However, the Grammy’s have bended this rule before, so you never know.

Alessia Cara and Rachel Platten both had huge hits (“Here” and “Fight Song,” respectively) and likewise have chances of being nominated as both albums are within the Grammy period.  I’m hesitant, however, because while I’d love to see both of them there, I have a gut feeling…

Better Man

I was in line at the grocery store when I got the news.  I was scrolling through my Facebook feed (it was a long line at the register) when I saw a post by Taylor Swift saying she wrote the song “Better Man” for Little Big Town.  My heart started pounding.  New Taylor Swift music.  Finally.

I rushed to my car and downloaded the song from iTunes without previewing it.  If Taylor Swift had a hand in writing the song, you know it has to be good.  You don’t need to preview that.

And it’s beautiful.  The song is honest and fragile, and reminiscent of Swift’s country roots.


The mark of a truly gifted songwriter is when the song will sound like the person who wrote it even if they aren’t performing it.  This is totally the case here.  While it’s Little Big Town performing, you feel as though Taylor Swift is singing it to you – you can almost hear her sing it.

Last month, there was a bit of a hysteria where we thought Swift would secretly release her sixth album (sadly, that did not happen).  The below video leaked online and people thought it was a clip of a new Taylor Swift song because it sounds just like her.

Apparently, it’s not Taylor Swift, but Kelsea Ballerini. That’s what they (reps for both Swift and Ballerini) said.

However, I have a very well trained musical ear, and that is not Kelsea Ballerini. Ballerini has more of a southern twang than Swift and a slightly higher pitch voice.  Plus, the way this singer pronounced “didn’t know, thought we could grow it” is more in line with Swift’s pronunciations.  But this video is not the greatest quality.  Indeed, Ballerini released the studio snippet of the song on her Instagram account (see below) and it made me do a double take…maybe it is Ballerini singing but the distorted quality makes it seem like Swift…

But since Swift wrote “Better Man” for Little Big Town, I’m now wondering if the clip above actually is Taylor Swift singing a demo for Kelsea Ballerini.  Like, in a few months we’ll see Kelsea Ballerini has a new single “Roses” written by T. Swift.

Regardless, let us revel in the fact we sort of have a new Taylor Swift song, and hope she hurries up with #TS6!

Revivals

I know I’m a little late with this – I had a major term paper due this week – but the Gilmore Girls revival trailer is finally here!  While I’m thoroughly excited, I have mixed feelings about it.

I have a feeling the series is about how Richard Gilmore (Lorelai’s father, Rory’s grandfather) dies (the actor, Ed Hermann passed away before the revival was made) and all three Gilmore women find themselves lost as tends to happen after losing a love one, and then them each finding new meaning in their lives.  While I’m excited about traveling back to Stars Hollow, the whole subject of death and losing yourself could be rather depressing.  Either way, I’m watching it on November 25th, I’m just hoping it’s not terrible.

In addition to this exciting release this week,  it was announced today that NBC is considering reviving Will & Grace, and that Disney is reviving That’s So Raven.  Part of me hears this news and thinks “can we not think of new material?”  Why don’t we give new talent a try and see if we can tell new stories.

At the same time, though, I think this revival culture that’s going on is rather exciting.  Being able to see where our favorite characters are now and what they’re doing is intriguing.

But if you think about the networks’ reasoning for creating the revivals, it’s rather smart.  These are shows that people loved watching and had/have a huge following.  Before any of these revivals were announced, there were podcasts dedicated to Gilmore Girls and the life of Stars Hollow, people would still laugh over Karen Walker’s burns, and Raven Baxter’s catch phrase “ya nasty” was still being repeated.  Investing money in recreating these shows means that people would most likely watch them and the return on investment would be high.  Unlike creating a brand new show, there wouldn’t be a barrier where people would have to learn about what the show is about and whether they’d enjoy it.  People are already fans, so they’ll watch it.  Easy money.

Except, the problem is, networks simply can’t create random garbage scenes and expect fans to buy-in to it.  While there is a fanbase, the quality of the revival has to be high.  For instance, if in the Gilmore Girls revival Luke and Lorelai are not married or together, fans would be rather angered by it.  It took Luke and Lorelai five season to get together, but then they broke up twice and it wasn’t until the final episode of the last season they got back together for what we can only assume as for the last and final time.  If they’re still playing this on again off again relationship ten years later, it would be infuriating.  There would be no growth in the plot, so why should we watch?  While reviving shows makes it easier for networks to get initial viewing, to sustain the viewership – i.e. getting fans to watch the entire season – requires them to still produce the high level quality of a show fans have come to know and love.

Overall though, big week for tv.  Now how I’m going to watch it all while going to school and working I do not know….