It probably doesn’t matter which Cyrus you’re talking about: for any of them, it’s pretty exciting to have a song on the radio and participate in GRAMMY Week.
The latest to partake in this is Billy Ray’s youngest daughter and Miley’s little sister Noah, who is making a name for herself with the Labrinth-assisted track “Make Me (Cry).”
“I’m like a little stressed out, a little nervous,” the teenager offered during our chat inside Staples Center. “This whole experience has been great.”
The experience has included releasing the track, performing on “The Tonight Show” and prepping for an upcoming spot on James Corden’s “The Late Late Show.” Corden hosted The GRAMMYs last weekend and Cyrus divulged to us that she would probably watch the award show at home, on the couch, Chinese food in hand.
It probably served as a well-deserved break from the promo run she’s been on behind the single. Cyrus is currently in the studio working on her debut album, “NC-17.”
“I don’t have a date for it yet,” she said. “It’s very far along but I still just want to get those final few songs that are like, ‘Alright, this is what makes the album me.’”
And something tells me that if she’s looking for advice on that, well… she won’t have to travel far from the couch to get it.
The 59th GRAMMYs proved to be an interesting mix of the predictable and the unpredictable.
Heading in to the night, you knew Adele was going to sweep the three major categories. The songstress took home all five gramophones that she was nominated for, including Record, Song and Album Of The Year.
You also probably assumed (correctly) that the singer, nee Adele Adkins, would turn in a rousing performance of her hit “Hello,” proving to open the show on the loveliest of notes.
James Corden? He was exactly what you expected: funny, not unsafe and collaborative. We saw the Carpool Karaoke segment coming from as far away as Justin Bieber or Drake were sitting (neither attended the show).
Actually on the karaoke bit – why didn’t CBS, which broadcasts the Patriots games, pull in Tom Brady or Julian Edelman for that spot? The final product looked more real-life karaoke than of the edited, Carpool variety: some didn’t know the lyrics, others were a little off and I think everyone at one point contributed to the awkwardness.
Then there were the political statements. From the subtle (Katy Perry wore an arm band reading “PERSIST”) to the not-so-subtle (A Tribe Called Quest complete with Busta Rhymes calling America’s Commander-In-Chief “President Agent Orange”). But hey, if you tuned in expecting not to see that then you simply haven’t been paying attention to the past year-and-a-half of our country.
Sunday night’s award show, which rose slightly in the ratings from last year, threw us a few curveballs too. Metallica, who took the stage with Lady Gaga, would say that’s putting things lightly. First Laverne Cox introduces the performance by only mentioning Gaga’s name and then lead singer James Hetfield’s microphone wasn’t working.
You didn’t hear Hetfield (mostly) and something you didn’t see were the stagehands in the commercial break after Beyonce’s performance. They had to use leaf blowers to clean the stage from confetti for the following act.
Another incident you didn’t see: the fact that every vendor inside Staples Center closes for the show, yet there was a rogue McDonald’s dishing burgers and fries to hungry attendees through the stand’s side door in cash-only transactions. From what I witnessed, it appeared that someone from the venue came over and shut down the operation.
Yeah, definitely didn’t expect to see GRAMMY-goers decked out in black ties and gowns while downing Big Macs. I also didn’t expect to see Adele have a performance-snafu… again.
Remember last year? The microphone inside the piano fell over and caused a weird sound throughout the number. This year, the flub occurred while Adele was performing a rearranged version of George Michael’s “Fast Love” in tribute to the fallen star. The 28 year-old accidentally sang an uncensored line and immediately hit the brakes.
“’I know its live TV; I’m sorry I can’t do it again, like last year,” she said. “I’m sorry for swearing. I’m sorry for starting again. Can we please start it again?”
Adele eventually reset and turned in another spectacular performance. Predictably, she stole the show. But no one could have predicted how.
Bruno Mars responding to James Corden’s inquiry about his tour rider during “Carpool Karaoke” was hilarious but upon further review, far from revealing, at least at the moment.
“Some booze, some water,” the “24K Magic” singer first told Corden about what he needs in his dressing room prior to a concert. Mars then offered up a thoughtful pause before adding, “Wet wipes.”
“All Bruno Mars needs is some wine and some wet wipes,” the TV host joked while Mars cracked that the line could provide the inspiration for his next album, to which they then both agreed could be massive.
“Pop the cork and wipe down!” Corden quickly sang, to the tune of “Don’t believe me, just watch!” from “Uptown Funk.” And the host wasn’t finished, freestyling, “Stop! Wait a minute! Wipe my face, put some liquor with it!” as Mars beatboxed the Mark Ronson-produced beat.
The interaction, its likes which have become Corden’s trademark on the segment, was instant TV and viral video gold. However following a search for a leaked Bruno Mars rider online, two points became apparent: the rider has never leaked and Mars talked about wanting wet wipes and wine backstage in a 2013 clip posted on TMZ’s website.
If anything, credit Mars with consistency… and of course, cleanliness. Plus fast forward a few years, and who knows, you might even be able to credit Corden with the singer’s next LP title.
Some news and notes from my fourth consecutive Tony Awards red carpet:
– There was a major scene change this year as the biggest night on Broadway moved uptown from 6th Avenue to… Broadway! The Tony’s were held at the venerable Beacon Theatre, the sister-venue of previous host Radio City Music Hall. Both buildings are managed by the Madison Square Garden Company. Instead of wrapping around the venue, this year’s red carpet simply stretched down two blocks from the front entrance of the theatre.
– It didn’t matter if you were Lin-Manuel Miranda, Leslie Odom Jr. or the guy in charge of lighting… if you were a part of the hit musical “Hamilton,” everyone wanted to talk to you. The production nabbed 16 nominations in 13 categories and took home 11 trophies. Tickets are impossible to come by unless you’re willing to refinance your house. Alex Lacamoire, who won the Tony for Best Orchestrations thanks to the musical based on Alexander Hamilton, smiled when I asked about the amount of ticket requests he has received.
“That’s wonderful because that means people want to see our show,” he said, in perhaps one of the bigger understatements of the evening. “So hey, no complaints.”
– Certainly Odom Jr. had zero complaints as he beat out his co-star Miranda for the Lead Actor in a Musical category. When I asked Odom if he and Miranda made a friendly wager over the Tony prior to the award show, he found the question so hilarious that he nearly spit out the water he was sipping.
– This was a first: two reporters next to me were hungry, so they decided to walk to a pizzeria, pick up a pie and bring the entire box, paper plates included, back to the red carpet. At least they shared (I did not indulge but they were very kind to offer).
– Neil Patrick Harris shouted, “Work!” when I asked him what inspired his new, shorter haircut. I was tempted to simply tell you that I asked him what his favorite Rihanna song was.
– Nice to see Sara Bareilles on the carpet; she said hello to me before her publicist dragged her inside so she wouldn’t miss the award ceremony. It has been a wonderful Broadway debut for the pop star: her musical “Waitress” nabbed four Tony nods including Best Musical and Best Original Score, which of course was penned by Bareilles herself.
– Of course, there are a lot of artists from all genres of entertainment on and/or involved with Broadway these days. The great Andrew Lloyd Webber offered an interesting response when I asked him about this.
“Providing that you’ve got the right people for the right roles, if that’s what you’re asking me, and they’re cast for the right reasons… that’s great,” the seven-time Tony Award winner, whose musical adaptation of “School of Rock” received multiple nominations, told me. “It really doesn’t matter who you have in a show. Like, ‘School of Rock’ doesn’t have a star, but at the same time it easily could. I mean, James Corden wouldn’t be bad in ‘School of Rock,’ would he?”