Going into the Grammy Awards, six different artists had six nominations each. But when the show finally wrapped up on Sunday night, the Grammys still didn’t know which artist it liked best, as several different acts ended up picking up multiple awards.
The big winner, technically, was Dan Auerbach of The Black Keys. In addition to winning three Grammys as a member of the alternative rock duo, he won an additional trophy for Producer of the Year, bringing his total to four. The group did not win in any of the major categories, though, despite a slew of nominations.
Artists who won three Grammys include Gotye and the duo of Jay-Z and Kanye West. Double winners included Fun., Frank Ocean and Mumford & Sons. Those last three acts had been heavily nominated going into the show, but only Fun. landed two of the top awards: Song of the Year for “We Are Young” and Best New Artist.
Accepting for “We Are Young,” lead singer Nate Ruess joked, “I don’t know what I was thinking when I wrote the chorus of that song. If this is in HD, you can see our faces and you can see we are not very young!”
The band noted that they’d actually been doing their thing for 12 years, and thanked their families who’d been supporting them all that time. Guitarist Jack Antonoff’s girlfriend Lena Dunham, creator and star of the HBO series “Girls,” was seen in the audience cheering for her man, just as he cheered for her when she won at the Golden Globes last month. When the band returned to the stage to accept the Best New Artist trophy, Ruess said that he wanted the other members of the band to make the speech because he “had to pee” so badly.
Gotye, whose momentum seemed to have slowed a bit going into the awards, ended up with three Grammys, including the prestigious Record of the Year trophy for “Somebody that I Used to Know.” Gotye, who was thrilled to accept the trophy from one of his musical inspirations — Prince — noted that there were “so many incredible songs” in the category, adding, “Thank you to everybody who puts great energy into the world making music. I feel unworthy being up here but thank you, all musicians.”
Album of the Year went, surprisingly, to “Babel” by British folk-rockers Mumford & Sons, whose only other trophy Sunday night was for Best Longform Music Video. We wish we could tell you what lead singer Marcus Mumford said when he accepted the award from Adele, but he cursed so much that most of his comments were bleeped out.
Last year’s big winner, Adele, was only nominated in one category — Best Pop Solo Performance — but of course, she won, for a live version of “Set Fire to the Rain.” Wearing a dress with a print that looked like it should have been covering a sofa, she told the crowd that she was a fan of all the other women in the category, which included Kelly Clarkson, Rihanna, Katy Perry and Carly Rae Jepsen. “Big love to all the other girls…we work so hard and make it look so easy!” she laughed.
Kelly Clarkson gave what may have been the most entertaining speech of the night when she won for Best Pop Vocal Album, for her disc Stronger. When her name was called, she ran over to Katy Perry and John Mayer and appeared to do an “I’m not worthy” move, and then ran to hug her friend Miranda Lambert, but their dresses got stuck together. After extricating herself, Kelly joked about being “stuck on Miranda Lambert,” but then said, “I didn’t know I was going to win ’cause I was so excited to be in the category…Fun. I’ve been covering you all summer…I love Pink, I love everybody I was in the category with!”
Then, referring to an earlier performance by R&B star Miguel of his Marvin Gaye-like ballad “Adorn,” she blurted out, “Miguel, I don’t know who the hell you are but we need to sing together! I mean, good God! That was the sexiest damn thing I’ve ever seen!”
Unusually, two country awards were given out during the telecast: Best Country Solo Performance, which was won by Carrie Underwood for “Blown Away,” and Best Country Album, which Zac Brown Band won for “Uncaged.” Underwood told the crowd, “Country music has always been so good to me, and I thank the Lord that I am part of such a wonderful, talented family.”
Katy Perry drew chuckles with her intro to the Best New Artist trophy presentation. “If you don’t win, don’t worry,” she told the nominees. “I was never even nominated in this category, and I have my own eyelash line!”
Leave it to Adele to get the last laugh, though. Presenting the evening’s final category of Album of the Year, the new mom said, “Most artists who have won Album of the Year tend to have more success, embark on humongous tours or get knocked up like last year’s winner!” That was her, in case you forgot.
By the way, some artists pushed the limits of that notorious memo that CBS sent out ahead of the telecast, warning them not to expose too much flesh. Jennifer Lopez’s body was covered, but her dress exposed her entire leg right up to the crotch. She joked, “So, as you can see, I read the memo!” Katy Perry, however, was displaying what’s commonly referred to as “side boob” with her deep cleavage, and even Alicia Keys flashed “underboob” when she lifted her arms and the black band of her dress that covered her breasts lifted up slightly.