Taylor Swift is nominated for three Grammy awards. But she won’t be performing on Sunday’s show. She sent out a message to her fans that she was too consumed with the planning of her upcoming 1989 tour. That may be true, but the more likely reason is that back in November, Swift performed “Blank Space” on the American Music Awards. And performers who choose the AMAs are generally not allowed on the following Grammys.
Pierre Cossette introduced that edict years ago to make the Grammys special. Producer Ken Ehrlich has stuck to the rule, and it’s served him well. Performers have to decide in the early fall if they need the publicity hit then from being on the AMAs rather than wait until February. At the time last November, Taylor was launching her “1989” album and the “Blank Space” single. Her presentation on the AMAs was pretty extensive, not just a stand up with a guitar. It was a full on Taylor Swift production.
The idea that she couldn’t out together one of her diorama type settings for “Shake it Off” for the Grammys doesn’t really fly. Swift’s company could put on a Broadway show if they wanted to. Instead, she’ll present Best New Artist and have a dance party in the Staples Center audience.
Two performers who were on the AMAs will perform on the Grammys– Sam Smith, and Ariana Grande. But on the AMAs they performed with others, not by themselves. And Ehrlich may have plans to include them in other numbers to diminish their roles. Smith is a separate problem. On the AMAs he performed “I’m Not the Only One.” He’s nominated for “Stay with Me” for the Grammys. But now there’s been an issue with Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne claiming songwriting royalties for the song. Knowing Ehrlich, he’ll get the two rockers to do a medley of their song “I Won’t Back Down” with “Stay with Me.”
Meantime, there’s a rumor of Beyonce joining Common and John Legend to sing “Glory” from the movie “Selma.” Paul McCartney is performing with Rihanna and Kanye West, there’s Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett, and a ton of other unique moments. I’m looking forward to watching the Grammys on TV for a change this year. It’s going to be a great show!