Archives For Macklemore

A celebrity beef squashed while another was allegedly started. A host spewing many expletives but for most of the show, not wearing nearly as many articles of clothing. A crying pop star. A presidential campaign announced.

And in between, a few solid performances and a couple of awards.

The 2015 MTV Video Music Awards contained a bit of everything Sunday night. Live from the Microsoft Theater in downtown Los Angeles, the network’s flagship broadcast set Twitter ablaze and caused more of a dumpster fire when the ratings came out.

Perhaps a large chunk of the decline in viewership can be attributed to the host. No one knew what to expect from Miley Cyrus, and afterwards the correct response would have been “not much.” There is a certain ebb-and-flow to hosting live television and it is a skill that doesn’t come easy to many; thus the reason why a guy like Seacrest gets paid so much to do it.

The VMAs averaged about five million viewers on MTV according to Nielsen, down 39 percent from last year.

But offer credit where it is deserved: Sunday night’s VMAs set a U.S. Twitter record for a non-sports TV broadcast with 2.2 million people generating over 21 million tweets. That can probably also be attributed to Cyrus, who surprised everyone by closing out the show and releasing an album online for free at its conclusion.

Oh, and the awards. Taylor Swift took home four, including Video Of The Year for the cameo-filled “Bad Blood” featuring rapper Kendrick Lamar. Of course Swift showed up with her “squad” in tow, including model Karlie Kloss and fellow singer Selena Gomez.

An outdoor stage set-up downtown provided some of the best musical moments of the night – Macklemore offered up a theatrical rendition of his new single “Downtown,” Demi Lovato received some assistance from surprise guest Iggy Azalea on “Cool For The Summer,” and Pharrell Williams struck a vastly different tone than most of the show with his performance of “Freedom.”

Inside, Justin Bieber returned to the VMA stage. The 21 year-old performed a medley of “Where Are U Now” and his latest single, “What Do You Mean?” Following the performance, Bieber was seen visibly weeping on stage. Reaction seemed to be generally positive, especially considering what has happened in the five years since he last performed at the VMAs.
Kanye West was there and relatively speaking was well behaved. MTV bestowed upon West the Vanguard Award for lifetime achievement, and rightfully so. But of course, it did not come without spectacle: Once-foe-now-friend Swift presented him to the stage and West followed with a rambling speech in which he both trashed award shows and admitted he had smoked weed beforehand.

He finished the rant by announcing that in 2020 he would seek the Oval Office. Then, he dropped the mic. Not surprising and certainly fitting.

Mary Lambert opened 2014 with a performance for the ages at The 54th Annual GRAMMY Awards. Joined on stage by Macklemore, Ryan Lewis, and Madonna, the singer/songwriter belted out the hook of the anthemic “Same Love” while 33 couples, straight and gay, were married inside the Staples Center.

Lambert found herself crying in front of Madonna during rehearsals, and has since found love and a hit single to call her own in “Secrets.” The 25 year-old stopped by “Ralphie Tonight” ahead of the release of Heart On My Sleeve, due out October 14, to chat about the album and the past 10 months of her life.

The accolades continue to roll in for Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, as the duo lead all artists with six American Music Awards nominations. The nods were revealed Thursday morning during a segment on “Good Morning America” and later in a press conference at nearby B.B. King’s in Times Square.

In addition to the top prize of Artist of the Year, the Seattle-based tandem will be up for Kohl’s Best New Artist, newly created Single of the Year, Favorite Pop/Rock Band, and Best Artist and Album in the Rap/Hip-Hop category.

Macklemore and Ryan Lewis will have their work cut out for them when it comes to the biggest award of the evening. Taylor Swift, Bruno Mars, Rihanna, and Justin Timberlake also received nominations for Artist of the Year. Timberlake looks to be the clear front-runner, having dropped two number one albums this year. But, the vote is fan-based, and is live now at For the first time in the show’s history, Twitter will also be used in the vote tallying process.

If it’s any consolation to the “Thrift Shop” artists, there’s at least one person who thinks they can take home the big award. The support though comes from an unlikely source: former N’Sync member Lance Bass.

“Macklemore and Ryan Lewis really just had such a stellar year,” Bass told me after the press conference. For the fourth consecutive year he will co-host the Coca Cola Red Carpet broadcast prior to the show. “I think it’s going to have to go to them.”

Bass still insists that Timberlake, who he referred to as “his boy,” will be sure to stop and chat with him on the red carpet prior to the AMAs. The award show will broadcast live on ABC, Sunday November 24 at 8 pm, from Los Angeles’ Nokia Theatre.

Also on Thursday, the first two performers were revealed: Miley Cyrus and Imagine Dragons. The latter is up for Best New Artist and the former made plenty of headlines the last time she performed on an award show.

“I don’t ever have talks with people about what they can’t do,” insisted AMAs producer Larry Klein. “We have creative talks to discuss what they want to do, and how they want to be presented. It’s very seldom that I ever say to somebody, ‘You cannot do this.’”

Given her recent live TV history, if there is one person in music that would warrant that seldom-used warning, it might be Cyrus.

Swift and Timberake tied for second on the nominations list with five apiece. The American Music Awards are produced by dick clark productions. Cumulus Media Networks is the show’s official radio partner.

My prediction is that Macklemore and Ryan Lewis are here for a little longer than the duration of “Thirft Shop.” Sure, the duo may be defined by that track, but a quick listen to The Heist reveals their talent reaches far beyond a novelty song. “Can’t Hold Us” is the second single.