AMAs 2014: Highs and Lows
Last night the 42nd annual AMAs aired on ABC. There were some great points, but more than enough moments that confirmed a three hour broadcast was unnecessary, especially if they couldn’t squeeze in presenting the Favorite Latin Singer award. Keep reading for the highlights and low points of the 2014 AMAs.
Pitbull hosted for the second year in a row and I’m still not sure why. Last year I figured there was a last minute change up and an actual host wasn’t available so they settled for an “artist” with a little personality. Fair enough, but he didn’t need to return. The only thing we gained from having Pitbull host was his commitment to incorporating Latino culture into the broadcast. He can definitely overdo it, but it’s nice to see non-white cultures represented since this award show otherwise ignores people of color. Also that performance with NeYo? Nobody needed that.
Taylor Swift kicked off the AMAs with a theatrical performance of her current hit single “Blank Space”. Taylor always delivers and this time was no different, but I couldn’t help but feel like she was slightly inspired by Beyonce’s Grammy performance of “Drunk In Love”. Lots of turning her back to the crowd and whipping her head around to sing.
Later Taylor accepted the Dick Clark award from Diana Ross but wait – shouldn’t it be the other way around? Taylor Swift is great and deserves every dollar, fan, and award she’s been winning for the past 10 years but what is the AMAs obsession with prematurely giving young artists these lifetime achievement awards? She’s accomplished so much, even just with this last album but it would be nice to artists receive these honors when they’re decades into their careers.
Who else won awards? One Direction took the lead with three awards in the Artist of the Year, Favorite Pop/Rock Album and categories and Iggy Azalea somehow managed to beat out Drake and Eminem for both Favorite Hip-Hop/Rap Artist and Favorite Hip-Hop/Rap Album. Honestly, didn’t we all see that coming? AMAs has never been about who deserves to be honored for their work, it’s more of a glorified People’s Choice Awards. If you’re as confused about the results as I am perhaps you should consider voting for next year’s show.
Christina Milian joined Lil Wayne to perform their new single “Start a Fire” and I hope they intend to throw copies of this single into said fire. If you enjoyed this performance you were either drunk, high, or just relieved to see brown faces in an otherwise white-washed award show. Not only could Wayne have left these bars in the studio for us to never hear in public, but he should have left Milian in 2001. She was so rusty there’s NO WAY she’s been practicing much in her time away from the spotlight – but we could tell that by her Instagram to be honest. Has she even been keeping up with the industry? Her style and dance moves seemed relevant in her “Dip It Low” days but now they just looked dated. Don’t try again.
In the most awkward transition since BET went from “F****n Problems” to Tamela Mann’s “Take Me to the King”, Wayne and his girlfriend scurried off stage to make way for Nicki Minaj and Skylar Grey. This duo was much better – Skylar at a piano while Nicki rapped in a white gown without any theatrics. Both of their voices sounded great!
Nicki Minaj also gave us the only other performance you needed to see when she took the stage again for her collaboration with Ariana Grande and Jessie J. Maybe Jessie didn’t put planning into her red carpet outfit because she was busy practicing this performance and if so, than we’ll forgive her because she delivered! Jessie belted out her verse like her entire career depends on it and I kinda think it does. This version of “Bang Bang” was their best yet except for one thing – Ariana Grande. Her voice is amazing, she’s in great shape but her appearance needs to be tailored. We know, she’s sticking to this hairstyle because her hair is damaged but there are options, ask your buddy Nicki Minaj for a wig hook up! At 22 and five feet even Ariana has to make better efforts to look her age. Watching her wear booty shorts and crop tops with a 12 year old hairstyle while singing lyrics about holding hands in school and how to graduate makes me feel like Chris Hayes or Detective Benson will bust through my doors at a anytime and I don’t like it. Nicki Minaj and Jessie J both looked great on their own but next to Ariana Grande it looks like Nicki’s an old Vegas hooker teaching Ariana the ropes and Jessie J is their madame. Not a good look.
Back to performances you didn’t need to see – Selena Gomez cried her heart out about Justin Bieber in what many thought of as an emotional performance. She seemed moved by her own performance but I was bored. The song itself isn’t that great and knowing that she’s singing about longing for a privileged, immature asshole makes me even more annoyed. I would’ve rather seen Meghan Trainor perform “All About That Bass”.
I’m still trying to process how I feel about Fergie’s appearance last night. She “rapped” her new single “LA Love” featuring DJ Mustard and YG and it was, thought provoking. Fergie’s always been connected to the hip-hop world but this isn’t the type of music many of us envisioned. It seemed a little forced, and instead of looking like the season singer and dancer she is she appeared to be knocking off Iggy Azalea. She wasn’t the worst of the night but we’ve definitely seen her do better.
One Beyonce inspired performance apparently wasn’t enough, so the show closed out with J.Lo and Iggy Azalea performing “Booty” in the style of Queen Bey. J. Lo came out with wet hair, seem familiar?, doing a burlesque type of routine. Few people love Beyonce’s latest project more than me, but I feel like artists should still do their own thing. Don’t go the Christina Aguilera route of trying to copy your biggest competition for success because it will never work.
Did you watch the AMAs? What were your favorite, or most hated, moments? Make sure you’re following @ItsEstaFiesta on Twitter so we can live tweet the next award show together – oh, and right now you can win a flat iron if you’re following me too!!