February 21, 2013 by Colin Kelly
Random thoughts on BRITS 2013:
Taylor Swift delivered one of the best performances I’ve ever seen. It was sensational and puts her among the Premier League of performers. She’s up there with Rihanna and Beyonce now. She looked incredible, the stage set, costumes and dancers helped of course but right at its heart is her incredible voice and deep connection with the audience. She’s transitioning into an icon before our eyes.
Robbie Williams has the hunger back. If you described the ideal popstar you’d never get to him in a million years but he’s authentic. There’s only one and when he’s on form, there’s no-one better. British music needs Robbie Wiliams at his best and he needs his music career because he’s got a lot to say. Take his last 3 singles and read the lyrics. Few other artists say so much.
I cringe every time I see Nick Grimshaw. Doesn’t he realise the hangers on just want coverage? At least Chris Evans was selective about who he hung around with and built an empire off the back of it. But it’s the desperate quest to be relevant. Where Robbie sometimes has too much to say, Grimshaw has nothing.
Emeli Sande proves there’s always a place for class and talent in an extremely shallow world. She rises above it. She doesn’t need to try. That’s not to say she doesn’t work incredibly hard, but she doesn’t crave attention. She’s secure in her abilities, she knows she can do it and we should all be proud of her and learn something from her.
One Direction are like the Duracell bunnies that keep on going. You watch them and you know they’ve loving every minute. They can’t believe it’s happening and the energy picks you up and carries you with them. You forget the fact the song is a dodgy cover version and that everyone over 21 only knows Harry by name. It doesn’t matter. They give 100% and have the production and the marketing behind them. That’s the trick – convince a multinational behemoth that you’re the one they should fully invest in.
James Corden did a good job hosting, except for his nonsense cuddling up to Grimshaw at the end. He’s naturally a very likeable guy and doesn’t need to try. His false ad-lib after Adele’s genuinely amusing acceptance speech via video fell utterly flat and put a barrier between him and the audience. Doesn’t he get it? We already like you, so every time you try to make us like you it only makes us feel further away from you. Just stand there and be yourself, you’ve already got it.
The organisers were smart wrapping up the show with Emeli Sande rather than 3 songs from some clapped out ‘life time achievers’. Keep it current, celebrate the best we’ve got now and give a nod to up and coming talent rather than trotting out the has beens.
But STV missed a trick. On the day they got some thoroughly deserved good press for their increased profits and bold new direction, they missed the opportunity to connect with their audience off the back of Sande’s success. A profile documentary on Jose Mourinho could have gone out anytime. Instead, they should have broadcast a quick turnaround feature on Aberdeen’s Emeli Sande. They should do so as soon as possible.
Mastercard – (EDIT: please note, this section of this post originally included some opinions of mine about the involvement of Mastercard as sponsors of the show and called for them to put more effort in to supporting up and coming British talent. I based this on content on the BRITS website which revolved around a Mastercard backed competition ‘to meet Ne-Yo’. It’s now been brought to my attention (please see comment from Neil Henderson below) that Mastercard has a proud and highly successful 15 year relationship with The BRITS School which has been responsible for helping to develop the careers of Jesse J and Adele among many others. I’m happy to clarify this and I’m sorry this wasn’t made clear in the original post. You can find out more about The Brits School here.