Flat Grammy Fashion

By: Marcelo Báez

Grammy viewers seem more concerned with fashion than musical recognition. Television executives surely know this because them seem to give more screen time to the red carpet than any other part of the ceremony. Right now lots of people are pissed at Kanye West for making his typical dumb-ass proclamations. And while he definitely deserves the ire of his critics, would anybody be talking about Beck’s achievements – and Beyoncé’s bloated legend—if it wasn’t for Yisus’ big mouth? Probably not.

But we’re here to join the herd, not to underline the obvious silliness of the Grammys. So lets talk about fashion, then—but specifically, let's talk about how most of the men in attendance seem to believe they won't look good, or possibly be taken seriously, unless they wear a jacket and a tie. Rockers, hip hop heads, pop gods – aren’t these people supposed to be edgy? You know there's a problem when Dwight Yoakam has a better outfit than Pharrell. Save the suits for Sunday mass, kids. You need to pull a Michael Jackson and wear something people will actually remember.

One notable exception was Prince, a man who can always be counted on to entertain. Prince is such a phenomenon —both in music and fashion— that at this point in his career can put a dead, mummified cat carcass on his head and serious fashionistas would hesitate to call it anything other than art. Knowing all this, Prince wore a loose gimp suit along with some butt beads he must have picked up in Tibet. To tie together the look, the Artist Formally Known As An Unpronounceable Sign added a white, bedazzled cane to his look and—voila, the Gimpce look was completed.

But what of our people? How did Latinos “represent” us this time around? By dressing just as mundane as the rest. Enrique Iglesias, for example, felt no shame when he decided to present an award —or stand around, or whatever he was there to do— in jeans and a black shirt with a sweater over it. It’s the daring, hot look a suave fashion enthusiast, such as Ellen DeGeneres, would totally approve of.

Yes, our dear Juanes performed. And apparently it was the first time a song was performed in Spanish at the non-Latin Grammys. So what did he wear for the momentous occasion? A tux? One of Steven Tyler's awesome outfits? (Because, after all, Juanes is a rockero). Naw. He just wore a plain jean shirt. What about fellow Colombian Carlos Vives? He just wore a suit, like everyone else. He should have gone with one of his sexy pool boy outfits instead.

We do need to salute Lila Downs. Not so much for her outfit, which is a weird mix of Divine’s cocktail dress and folkish Diego Rivera art, but because she wore a “43” band around her arm in order to call attention to the infamous Ayotzinapa case.

But the best outfit of the entire night was Rihanna's quinceañera cake topper dress. We’re not sure if she seriously though it looked, like, couture fashionable or whatever, or if she went into Mitzy’s showroom and was like “make a dress but move the waist up to my neck because I wanna f*** with people.” Either way, she looked hilarious. (BTW, Rihanna, can you put us in touch with your therapist? Because we want some of that confidence for ourselves.) 

Marcelo Baéz is a writer, DJ, and musician based in NYC. When he's not producing "Rico Suave" parties, he releases music under P3CULIAR.