2021 Grammys Fails

Highlighting some of the more disappointing and cringe-worthy moments of music’s biggest night.


A derivative by Nhu Tat of “Grammy” by Colby Sharp, used under CC BY

Disclaimer: This is a satirical opinion article, and the sentiments within this piece do not necessarily reflect the Messenger’s views as an organization.

On March 14th, viewers tuned in to watch the 63rd annual Grammy Awards hosted by The Daily Show’s Trevor Noah. The socially distanced and partially pre-recorded show was speckled with star performances by Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion, Harry Styles, Dua Lipa, BTS, and Taylor Swift. However flashy the attendees were, the internet was quick to give its opinion on some of the more memorable outfits and performances.

First to open the ceremony was Harry Styles, delighting many viewers as he took the stage in a black leather suit and a green feather boa, purposely displaying his large moth tattoo across his abdomen, in place of a shirt. His performance of hit single “Watermelon Sugar”, paired with his rockstar get-up was well-received. However, his red carpet outfit was not as widely applauded. Styles took the carpet in Clueless meets English grandfather meets Britney Spears outfit, including a yellow plaid jacket, over a knit sweater vest, all wrapped up in a purple feather boa. Obviously, his leather and abs outfit were more popular. 

Later on in the evening, Dababy took the stage to perform his hit “Rockstar,” wearing a white Chanel suit with pearl and jewel detailing. Simultaneously rapping and conducting a choir of elderly women, his performance left viewers with one request: pick a genre. 

Unfortunately, the confusing set designs didn’t end there. Doja Cat and Dua Lipa’s performances, while impressive, were overshadowed by the number of lasers and lights used during their set, creating a show reminiscent of a 2010’s Katy Perry concert and likely starting a migraine. 

The awards side of the show consisted of surprises and snubs. The Academy honorably mentioned Beyoncé for breaking the record for most Grammys won by an artist ever. However exciting this announcement was, Beyoncé merely smiled and pretended to look shocked, because no one (including Beyoncé) was really surprised that only she could pull off this feat. On the unsurprising side of the night, Taylor Swift took home the prize for album of the year, an award she has already won twice previously. Her cottage-core quarantine transformation was showcased in the ceremony, with Swift performing in a makeshift cabin in the woods for her set. While Taylor’s year of whimsey and dancing through forests has been well received, her performance was the perfect opportunity for most viewers to use the bathroom.

The biggest upset of the night included Billie Eilish winning Record of the Year over Megan Thee Stallion, something Eilish noted in her acceptance speech. “This is really embarrassing for me,” admitted Eilish. “You [Megan] deserve this. You had a year that I think is untoppable. You are a queen.”

Thankfully Eilish had the grace to attribute her award to Megan, since her Gucci-tracksuit-ocean-eyes personality has been getting a little old. 

Most Grammy viewers seemed to agree that the obvious MVP of the night was Megan Thee Stallion, attending the ceremony in a neon orange Dolce & Gabbana gown, complemented by a diamond necklace. She performed two of her hit singles “Savage” and “Body” as a remix, in a roaring ’20s themed set, complete with tap dancers. Her show-stopping performance earned her three Grammys later in the night. 

All in all, the socially distanced award ceremony was fairly underwhelming. Despite Trevor Noah’s efforts to keep the audience laughing, most viewers felt like what Beyoncé looked like the entire program: bored. After a year of desperate scrolling from behind screens, viewers felt like they should be rewarded gossip and entertainment at the first big celebrity moment since the pandemic hit, but unfortunately, the Grammys did in fact disappoint. Luckily for The Academy, Megan Thee Stallion saved the night with her performance and presence.