Gaga shines, Rihanna falters at Grammy nominations

Correction: A previous version of this article said “You and I” is a hit song by Sugarland. The song is from Lady Gaga’s album Born this Way.


To celebrate the end of the semester, my friends and I treated ourselves to attending the 2012 Grammy Nominations Concert at Nokia Theatre. The purpose of the hour-long show is to announce next year’s Grammy nominations, with performances interwoven throughout the program. The show, while entertaining overall, had its share of both hits and misses.

Best Performance: Lady Gaga and Sugarland, “You and I” duet

Who knew that the pop legend could rock it with the American country music duo? In a creative collaboration, the two acts teamed together to perform Lady Gaga’s hit, “You and I.” Sugarland’s lead singer, Jennifer Nettles, was absolutely excellent live, and her strong, clear vocals meshed well with Lady Gaga’s passionate singing. The pop star used her piano chops and flair for performance to add extra flavor to the song.

Worst Performance: Rihanna, “We Found Love” in London

My friends and I went into the concert thinking that Rihanna was actually performing at the Nokia Theatre, due to the advertising done for the show featuring her name as a headliner. As it turned out, the show lamely broadcasted a clip of her performing her hit “We Found Love” in London. Apparently we weren’t the only ones who were disappointed, as the mood in the audience significantly dipped as her clip was played.

Best Presenter: Bruno Mars

Bruno Mars, who was nominated for six awards, announced the nominees for Best New Artist. His delivery was smooth and playful, as he joked that winning a Grammy was a great feeling, followed by a wink (Bruno won his first Grammy last year for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance for “Just the Way You Are”).

Worst Presenter: Katy Perry

The pop star, who has ruled the radio airwaves this past year, stumbled over several of her lines and simply looked awkward onstage as she announced the nominees for “Album of the Year.”

The Band Perry and Usher also performed, in addition to Jason Aldean and Ludaris and a large collaboration featuring Grandmaster Flash, LL Cool J, Common, and Lupe Fiasco.

Top nominees for next year’s Grammys include Kanye West, who led the pack with 7 nominations, followed by Adele, the Foo Fighters, and Bruno Mars, who racked up six nods each. For a full list of the 2012 Grammy Nominees, click here.