I have decided I don’t care what anybody has to say or for the jabs some have taken: Jennifer Lopez was asked to bring something to last Sunday’s Grammy Awards, the 61st annual, and Jennifer Lopez did that: She brought it.
And, then, the shoulding began.
Hey! Carrie Bradshaw warned us against shoulding. It is not a good thing.
Seems to me that the people most upset with J. Lo performing a tribute to Motown during the show sorta wished that the multi-hyphenate – one of the top Latina stars we got, if not the top Latina star we got – would have stayed in her lane. Which is crazy because for more than 20 years, La Lopez has proved and pushed herself for our entertainment, thankyouverymuch. Plus, the entire point of asking anyone to perform a tribute such as this one is to encourage them to interpret the music, to make it personal, and to share that with the world. Which she did.
What, is Jennifer Lopez good only for plunging Versace necklines?
The takedown mentality that’s plaguing the national discourse is warranted, yet, it is clear to me, in need of treatment. Of guidance.
There are people who are due for a check. That’s obvious. Good. It is time for change. It’s happening; keep it going. But Jennifer Lopez? All she wanted was for people to enjoy how she experienced the soul of Motown. Singing, dancing, entertaining, they are key to her soul, on that we agree, no?
If people had taken the time to receive that instead of waiting to pounce, then, perhaps, they would have written or said kinder words. They would have enjoyed the show, which, really, is all any of us watching at home or wherever was ever asked to do.
Now we should all over who will host award shows, instead of, I dunno, more pressingly, how we should all be doing a better job of protecting civil rights and liberties, and of remembering the Golden Rule, and of myriad more important things. J. Lo is limitless. Don’t come for her; be limitless, too.
Now for a somewhat-related note, 20 years ago, at the 41st Annual Grammy Awards, Ricky Martin had his big first moment as a crossover artist in America. This year, he helped to open the show with a diverse group of artists in a fun display of camaraderie for the sake of music’s biggest night.
Back to 20 years ago, Jennifer Lopez was there, and, together with Jerry Seinfeld, she presented a Grammy to Madonna. I watched all o’ that a couple of months after finishing high school in Lima, Peru, and it showed me that America was, indeed, a melting pot.
It was a beautiful moment, and it is good to see, that 20 years later, that moment was only a beginning.