Sunday’s Grammy Awards were a big win for Bruno Mars and Kendrick Lamar, who carried home a combined total of 12 awards. The Hawaiian R&B vocalist snagged almost all of the coveted top awards at the Grammys, with the exception of Best New Artist, which was awarded to Alessia Cara. Meanwhile, Lamar carried home five trophies, including all four awards in the rap category.
Bruno Mars was a surprise winner this year, beating out Kendrick Lamar, Jay-Z and Childish Gambino for the prestigious General awards. Mars’ “24K Magic” ultimately earned more votes from members of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS) than Lamar’s “Humble” and last year’s ubiquitous hit, “Despacito”. 24K Magic won both Album of the Year and best R&B Album. Additionally, the title track won Record of the Year. Mars also carried home the Song of the Year, Best R&B Song and Best R&B Performance for “That’s What I Like”, the album’s catchy ode to strawberry champagne and romance.
Jay-Z was projected to win big at the 60th Grammy Awards, but ended up falling short. Despite receiving eight nominations for his critically acclaimed 4:44 album, he failed to win in any categories. Kendrick Lamar’s Damn was widely expected to carry home Album of the Year, but was eclipsed by 24K Magic. He wasn’t the only artist to lose out. Khalid, No I.D. and SZA received five Grammy nominations apiece, but were also snubbed by Grammy voters. Childish Gambino was up for Album of the Year and Record of the Year, but only received one trophy for Best Traditional R&B Performance for his “Redbone”.
The Grammys battled low ratings this year and faced some criticism for giving top awards to pop music produced mainly by men. Despite critical acclaim, hip-hop albums by Kendrick Lamar and Jay-Z were largely snubbed. Also, while the performances at the Grammys focused on the Time’s Up movement, Alessia Cara was the only woman to win a major award.
When it came to this year’s Grammy Awards, Bruno Mars went stellular, leaving the stage with six trophies. Three of his wins were the big tickets, including Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and the Album of the Year. He also won Best R&B Song, Best R&B Album, and Best R&B Performance. Heck, his music was so hot this year that anyone in the Mars’ orbit was touched by the magic; his recording engineers garnered an award for their work on his album. Talk about planetary pull! The work of Mars makes people move, it incites them to get off their seats and dance.
Kendrick Lamar gave his best musical sounds to the Grammy awards ceremony in Madison Square Garden with help from U2 and Dave Chapelle. Lamar came in second that night in the number of awards to Bruno Mars, with Lamar garnering five trophies, including Best Rap Song, Best Rap Performance, and Best Rap Album.
Many commentators and odd-makers in Vegas expected Lamar’s political and potent sound to gain the night’s main prizes, but the judges gave the nod to Mars, leaving many speechless. Meanwhile, old school musician, legend, and entrepreneur Mr. Jay-Z, despite 8 nominations, left the room home empty-handed, and totally eschewed the stage. He didn’t even get a ribbon for attending or a consolation prize. Wait, no, Jay-Z, he’s doing okay. He is still married to Beyonce, a proud papa, and Lamar gave him a call out for president. All-in-all, Jay-Z did all right.
Beyond music, the night was a time for political statements, from the white roses of Time’s Up and Me Too to a remembrance of the victims of the Los Vegas Shootings and commemorations and posthumous awards for legendary artists that we lost in 2018, including Leonard Cohen and Carrie Fisher.
The 60th annual Grammy Awards aired January 28th. Though much of the talk surrounding the ceremony centered on performances, messages, and speeches pertaining to our current political landscape, the real outcomes were about Bruno Mars from top to bottom.
Bruno Mars was nominated for nearly every category of note at the 2018 Grammys, in the R&B genre as well as cross-genre. There were four main categories for R&B. Bruno Mars garnered a nomination in three, and took home three wins.
Best R&B Performance went to him for “That’s What I Like.” He also won Best R&B Song for “That’s What I Like”, sharing credit with writers Christopher Brody Brown, James Fauntleroy, Philip Lawrence, Ray Charles McCullough II, Jeremy Reeves, Ray Romulus and Jonathan Yip. Finally, Best R&B Album went to Bruno Mars for 24K Magic. The lone category in his genre where he failed to grab a nomination was for Best Traditional R&B Performance. Childish Gambino won there, but he couldn’t overshadowed Bruno Mars’ dominance.
And that dominance extended beyond his own genre. Bruno Mars was also up for the biggest categories of the evening. The three that mean the most are Album of the Year, Record of the Year, and Song of the Year. Mars’ 24K Magic was up for Album and Record. His “That’s What I Like” was up for best song.
There was stiff competition in each though, as one would expected. Despite that, Bruno Mars won all three categories, sweeping the competition. He bested Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar, and Lorde for best album. He took down the “Despacito” juggernaut for best record and best song. It was an all-around superb evening for Bruno Mars at the 60th Grammy Awards.