Last week, we all threw several black lace mourning veils over our faces to mourn the death of every member of The Supremes, Gladys Knight, Stevie Wonder, Smokey Robinson, and literally every singer not named Jennifer Lopez, because that was the only explanation for why the Grammy people chose JLo to headline their tribute to Motown. I thought that maybe after the Grammys were hit with a million and one side-eyes for that decision, they’d make the right decision by replacing her with a hastily-made Marvin Gaye hologram or even Rancho Cucamonga’s third most popular The Temptations tribute group performing to a track blasting out of an iPhone 5. Even Diana Ross’ grandson and fucking Jaden Smith did a better tribute to Motown and it wasn’t even a tribute to Motown.
But the Grammys went through with it and JLo delivered the kind of Motown “tribute” you’d see at 2:30 in the afternoon on a Tuesday at a 2-star casino motel outside of Laughlin, NV. They should’ve went all the way with that vibe by putting a stale potato bar on the stage, along with a chain-smoking gambling addict who’d yell at JLo, doing double duty as his cocktail waitress, to get his G&T already.
The good news is, no eardrums were harmed in the making of this laughable Motown tribute, because it seems like JLo lip-synched. The bad news is, everything else, including this tribute to Motown not really being a tribute to Motown. It was more like a tribute to fuckery. This mess, which included help from Ne-Yo and Smokey Robinson, was Motown night at a strip mall karaoke joint wrapped in a salsa show and covered with a heaping dose of rhinestone-embedded WTFness. But on a positive note, you can tell that JLo thoroughly researched the history of Motown by including some Tina Turner moves (Tina Turner was not a Motown artist, by the way).
After that Motown by way of Miami performance, Entertainment Tonight asked JLo for her thoughts on people not loving her tribute I guess Gina Rodriguez is her response writer now.
“The thing about music is that it inspires all. Any type of music can inspire any type of artist. You can’t tell people what to love. You can’t tell people what they can and can’t do, what they should sing or not sing. You gotta do what’s in your heart.”
Lopez continued, explaining that the GRAMMY producers and Motown icon Berry Gordy were “thrilled” about her involvement.
“They know how much I have been influenced by that music and so it was a natural fit for them. But for some people, [it wasn’t], and that’s okay. I’m just very humbled and honored to be able to have sung those songs.”
The night before the Grammys, Smokey Robinson was asked by Variety about the backlash, and he defended Jenny From “Her Hispanic Neighborhood Wherever She Was” by saying that only stupid people are upset. HAHAHA!
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