2. Censorship – All We Do Is Curse?
Issue: Recall the Rick Ross performance where it was silent for what felt like an eternity? It should definitely go down as one of the best unheard performances of this decade. In addition, let’s not leave out Ms. Minaj’s acceptance speech. I get it. It’s a free country, but there’s a time and place for almost everything. No need to even rehash Odd Future’s soliloquy last year.
Solution: Perform the radio version of the record, with the hope that artists can censor themselves, whether performing or accepting an award on stage. Audience members of most ages (as we were repeatedly shown throughout the night) have memorized or been programmed to memorize the lyrics to these records; censorship will not dilute the performances from the selected artists.
3. Production – Or Lack Thereof
Issue: There was much praise throughout social media regarding the direction of Hill and the overall presentation of the show. With the utmost of respect, we disagree. This could’ve easily been the longest segment of our list, but we decided to stick with two disconcerting themes: one, camera shots, and two, the establishment of roles and responsibilities.
Solution: Sprinkle celebrities throughout the crowd. We don’t know how many times we saw the Carters, Mr. West and Ms. Kardashian, Baby and Busta in the front rows. It gives the appearance that only 10 people came to the event. We are tired of seeing the same folks in the audience. We love our peers, but we don’t watch the show to see them dancing and reciting lyrics and catching the Holy Ghost when their beloved artist[s] perform. We’ve paid our cable bill, popped our respective boxes of popcorn, and charged our phones to tweet the actual performances, so let us see them!
Also, there were countless moments when everyone — from host Samuel L. Jackson to M.C. Lyte — was oblivious to the camera when returning from commercial breaks. T.J. Holmes didn’t even show up on stage when he was announced. Everyone looked like deer caught in headlights. Keep it simple and maybe change the venue. The Shrine Auditorium is starting to look like the Apollo.