Opinion: The Grammy awards respect elders

Megan L. Brown is a junior magazine journalism major and a columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected] 

Megan L. Brown

We saw some wiser choices in the rock categories of the 56th annual Grammy Awards Sunday, Jan. 26. Black Sabbath, The Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney (with Dave Grohl, Kris Novoselic and Pat Smear), Gary Clark Jr. and Muse were all nominated for Best Rock Song. McCartney and friends took home the win for “Cut Me Some Slack,” and Grohl couldn’t thank McCartney enough because without his legendary work as a musician, where would Grohl be?

Black Sabbath, David Bowie, Kings of Leon, Led Zeppelin, Neil Young and Queens of the Stone Age were all up for Best Rock Album, and Led Zeppelin took home the gold. This was the first win ever for Led Zeppelin. Absurd, right?

A band that seems to be the epitome of rock ‘n’ roll wins a Grammy decades after their existence. The Grammy was awarded for their release of “Celebration Day,” the recording

of Led Zeppelin’s 2007 reunion performance at London’s O2 Arena.

Up for Best Rock Performance were Alabama Shakes, David Bowie, Imagine Dragons, Jack White, Led Zeppelin, and Queens of the Stone Age; Imagine Dragons took home the win. I’m not a fan of them, but there’s no denying they’re a solid band and can rock a performance. They performed their hit song “Radioactive” with Kendrick Lamar during the ceremony, and it was heavy. Lamar spit verses of his own “m.A.A.d city,” and they made it clear they were in control of not just the stage but the audience.

Reverting back to the older generation, the Grammys let us see Ringo Starr and Paul McCartney reunite onstage. Although we didn’t get to hear a Beatles song performed, we saw Sir Paul and Ringo play “Queenie Eye,” a song from McCartney’s latest album, “New.” The celebration continues as CBS will celebrate the Beatles’ 50th anniversary Feb. 9 with “The Night That Changed America: A Grammy Salute to the Beatles.” As Dave Grohl mentioned in his acceptance speech, where would many of these bands be without the Beatles and other bands of older generations?

We even got to see half of the country super-group, The Highwaymen, reunite. The original members included Johnny Cash, Kris Kristofferson, Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson. Blake Shelton and Merle Haggard filled in for the late Cash and Jennings. They performed the Highwaymen’s signature song, “Highwayman,” along with Nelson’s “Mammas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys” and Haggard’s “Okie from Muskogee.” The crowd was alive, and that’s what it’s all about: coming together through music.

The Grammys always don’t recognize everyone who should be seen within the music industry, but they sure had some great moments this year. Whether it was through collaboration or reunion, the night was full of gratifying moments, especially for the music legends.