The music world is experiencing the aftermath of its own El Nino following last night's 40th annual Grammy Awards presentation at New York's Radio City Hall.
Perennial favorite Jimmy Sturr may have captured his eighth polka-related award, but it was Bob Dylan and son Jakob who stole the show, upstaging the Polka Prince by snagging three and two Grammys, respectively.
The elder Dylan won the hearts of rock purists by winning the Album of the Year award (Time Out of Mind), Best Contemporary Folk Album (Time Out of Mind) and Best Rock Song ("Cold Irons Bound"), while Jakob and the Wallflowers snagged awards for Best Rock Performance By a Duo or Group With Vocal ("One Headlight") and Best Rock Song ("One Headlight").
Before Dylan captured his final piece of hardware, he performed a memorably rugged version of the bluesy "Lovesick," unwittingly complemented by a topless man performing an interpretive dance. The limber neo-hippie (the dancer, not Bob), who had the words "Soy Bomb" painted on his chest, appeared beside the unflappable veteran and vogued to the song before half-asleep security yanked him off-stage.
Earlier, the napping staff allowed the Wu-Tang Clan's daft Ol' Dirty Bastard to disrupt Shawn Colvin's acceptance speech for Song of the Year with his tangential filibuster about how the Clan should have won the Best Rap Album award instead of Puff Daddy and the Family. "Puff Daddy is good, but Wu Tang is for the children," ODB told the dumbfounded audience. (Mayor Rudy Giuliani was undoubtedly doubled over in laughter. Maybe next year Jerry Springerwill lend Grammy organizer Michael Greene some henchmen to keep things copacetic.)
Another bizarre moment came during the award for Best Female Country Vocal Performance, in which Trisha Yearwood nabbed the Grammy for the song "How Do I Live" one minute after 15-year old LeAnn Rimes performed a stirring, also-nominated version of the same song. (That's like giving props to Thelma instead of Louise.)
Squeezing 18 performances into three hours is no easy task -- one that inevitably involves cutting some performances short (so long as they're not ratings-grabbers Celine Dion or R. Kelly, who picked up three Grammy Awards for the Space Jam song "I Believe I Can Fly").
The Lilith Fair contingent got the proverbial shaft this year as Paula Cole, Shawn Colvin and Sarah McLachlan were given the "verse-chorus, next, please" treatment for their back-to-back-to-back performance. Still, Cole managed to drop a kickin' human beatbox into her truncated version of "Where Have All the Cowboys Gone."
After Colvin's reflective take on "Sunny Came Home" (Song of the Year and Record of the Year), Cole and Colvin joined double-Grammy winner McLachlan (Best Female Pop Vocal Performance and Best Pop Instrumental Performance) for a gorgeous "Building a Mystery." Later, Cole avoided being a shut-out for her seven nominations by upsetting favorites Hanson and Fiona Apple to capture a Grammy for Best New Artist. (To celebrate, Cole will not shave her armpits.)
Unexpected winners included Ray-Ban sunglasses, which received choice product placement from Will Smith during his inspired rap medley "Men in Black/Gettin' Jiggy Wit It," as well as Dan Aykroyd and John Goodman, who managed to plug Blues Brothers 2000 during a performance of "Respect" featuring Aretha Franklin. Smith later accepted a Grammy for Best Rap Solo Performance ("Men in Black").
Other artists who lugged Grammys to the after-parties included: Erykah Badu for Best R&B album (Baduizm) and Best Female R&B Vocal Performance ("On and On"); Radiohead and Jamiroquai -- neither of whom attended the show -- for Best Alternative Music Performance (OK Computer) and Best Pop Performance By a Duo or Group with Vocal ("Virtual Insanity"), respectively; the Smashing Pumpkins for Best Hard Rock Performance ("The End Is the Beginning Is the End"); Tool for Best Metal Performance (Aenema); John Fogerty for Best Rock Album (Blue Moon Swamp); the Chemical Brothers for Best Rock Instrumental Performance ("Block Rockin' Beats"); and Fiona Apple for Best Female Vocal Performance ("Criminal"). Fortunately, Apple didn't accept the award during the show's telecast.