Grammys will be lip-licking good with LL Cool J

LL Cool J hosts the 56th Annual Grammy Awards on Sunday at 8 p.m. on CBS. (Credit: CBS Photo Archive/Getty Images)
LL Cool J hosts the 56th Annual Grammy Awards on Sunday at 8 p.m. on CBS. (Credit: CBS Photo Archive/Getty Images)

The last thing millions of viewers will be focused on while watching the Grammys is the awards themselves. What makes the Grammys are the performances. The programmers know this, which is why in recent years they have featured less trophy presentations and more of their oddball pairings of performers that you wouldn’t necessarily think would work together. The results often vary from stunning to excruciating, which is why we tune in. Here’s what to look out for on Sunday night.

Getting lucky?
Pharrell Williams had his hand in two of 2013’s mega hits, Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” and Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky,” the latter of which he’ll perform with everybody’s favorite helmeted Frenchmen. (BTW, be ready to tell your parents that Daft Punk have been around since the ’90s when they ask who the weirdos in the helmets were). With Nile Rodgers and Stevie Wonder also joining in this jam, you can feel it all over, especially as it’s rumored they’ll go into Stevie’s classic, “Sir Duke.” It will also be surprising if you don’t see Pharrell at the podium to accept an award at least once. He’s nominated for seven!

The host with the most (licks)
LL Cool J is back for his third consecutive year as the host, and if the previous years are any indication, he also swings wildly between cringe-worthy (actually saying the phrase “hash tag” in front of everybody’s name he mentions like a verbal tweet) and awe-inspiring (kicking it old school at the end of last year’s ceremony with Chuck D, Z-Trip, Tom Morello and Travis Barker). Also, if you’re looking for a Grammys drinking game, if you take a drink after every time the host licks his lips, you’ll be wasted before a single note-worthy award is given. Historically, LL has stood for Ladies Love, but maybe it’s been lip-licking all along!

Country classics
Though many may see this as “the guy from ‘The Voice’ with a bunch of old bearded dudes,” Blake Shelton (nominated for Best Country Solo Performance) will sing with Merle Haggard, Kris Kristofferson and Willie Nelson. The forecast for this one is amazing, with a chance of embarrassing.

Blurred horn lines
You remember Robin Thicke from the VMAs? Yes, he was definitely there! He was the one guy that Miley Cyrus grinded upon that wasn’t dressed like a stuffed animal. Anyway, he’s being given another shot at awards show glory, and he’s sharing the stage with the legendary nine-piece horn outfit Chicago. So he had something different in mind when he told Miley right before their duet that he wanted “something horny”?

‘Radioactive’ collaboration
One of the worst moments in Grammy history happened in 2006, when Linkin Park, Jay Z and Paul McCartney tried to create popular mashups that featured their music. (In 2006, mashups were still new and musicians were still figuring out how to accompany rappers.) Eight years later, hip-hop and rock fit more naturally, so when Imagine Dragons play their Record of the Year nominee, “Radioactive” as Kendrick Lamar raps over it with “Swimming Pool,” from his Album of the Year nominee, “Good Kid, M.A.A.D City,” it has potential. Interestingly enough, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis (nominated for seven awards also, including Album of the Year and Song of the Year) are not paired with anybody. Maybe the Academy thought they were separate artists who they’d already paired together?

Music’s last couple
Yes, they’ll probably do “Drunk in Love” together, but wouldn’t it be sublime if hip-hop’s royal couple silently acted out a dramatic scene while Lorde performed her multiple nominee “Royals”? Think about how much that “you can call me Queen Bey” part would resonate! Or maybe Jay and Bey could perform “Love Will Keep Us Together,” as a tribute to Captain and Tennille, who earlier this week announced that they are divorcing.

Big sloppy rock ending
There’s also no star in an all-star jam, because when a ton of accomplished famous musicians plug in, it’s just a mess. Earlier this week it was announced that Dave Grohl was curating the finale, which includes Nine Inch Nails, Queens of the Stone Age and Lindsey Buckingham of Fleetwood Mac. But what makes this different from any Rock and Roll Hall of Fame jam is that we can’t think of a single song that all of these guys would like. It will be a mess, but at least it will be an interesting mess.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Federal mediator joins Met Opera labor talks as…

Unions representing the orchestra and chorus of the Met Opera agreed to have a federal mediator join labor talks on Thursday as a threatened lockout loomed.

Local

Winning $7 million New York lottery ticket sold…

The only $7 million winning New York Lottery ticket for Monday's Cash4Life drawing was sold at a Queens 7-Eleven, officials said on Tuesday.

Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

Movies

Review: 'Guardians of the Galaxy' is a refreshingly…

Marvel is sitting so high on a cash mountain that it's now thrown $170 million at the relatively obscure and very silly title "Guardians of the Galaxy."

Movies

Review: 'Get on Up' is a war between…

James Brown finally gets his own boring biopic with "Get on Up," but the Godfather of Soul puts up a good fight against the usual cliches.

Movies

Review: 'Child of God' finds director James Franco…

James Franco's 11th directed feature is a noble but sloppy adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's "Child of God," about a feral mountain man (Scott Haze).

Movies

Review: Alex Gibney's Fela Kuti doc 'Finding Fela'…

Prolific documentarian Alex Gibney takes on Afrobeat god Fela Kuti in "Finding Fela," but fails to capture his unique essence.

MLB

Yankees land Stephen Drew, Martin Prado at trade…

Yankees land Stephen Drew, Martin Prado at trade deadline

College

Playing the Field: Valentine's Day coupling edition

  It’s Valentine’s Day, a day created by Hallmark to make couples spend loads and loads of money on candy, flowers and gourmet dinners. Or…

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

Career

What do you wear to a career fair?…

Getting that gig starts with presenting the most polished and memorable version of yourself, so refer to our expert fashion advice.

Style

Editors pick: Margiela's finger armor ring

These cool rings from Maison Martin Margiela are designed to overlap over the finger, covering each joint like armor.

Style

Givenchy champions diversity

Riccardo Tisci's uses a variety of ethnically diverse ladies for his spring campaign including Erykah Badu.

Wellbeing

Don't settle for the hotel fitness center with…

Travelers who want to skip the hotel fitness center in favor of local gyms that may offer better equipment, classes and amenities can turn to…