As that beautifully minimalistic image above reminds you, the 57th Grammys ceremony airs this Sunday, February 8, at 8 p.m. EST on CBS. But why should you sit your ass down and take in a two-hours-plus ceremony dedicated to Music's Biggest Night? Well, that's a good question, and you've come to the place for the good answers. We've run down reasons why you should tune in below.
1. Kanye, Rihanna, and Paul McCartney are performing...
Yup, that's right: as announced earlier this week, the trio responsible for Rihanna's latest single, "FourFiveSeconds," will join together in a performance of the song for the ceremony. "FourFiveSeconds" is a pretty weird-sounding song—for one, it's pretty much bereft of percussion—so it'll be interesting to see how it translates to the stage. (Also: there's the possibility of denim, which we hear is very much "in" lately.)
2. ...And Kanye's debuting a new song on his own, too
We're no closer to hearing Kanye West's new album—it's not even finished yet—but Mr. West will be taking the stage this Sunday to debut a brand-new song too. This is something to be truly excited about, as 'Ye's been known to pull it out for award show performances, especially when it comes to showcasing new material—such as when he debuted "Love Lockdown" at the end of the 2008 MTV Video Music Awards:
3. Beyoncé will be performing...
After opening last year's ceremony with a mind-blowing performance, Queen B is returning again this year, albeit in a more minor role: rumors abounded earlier this week that she'd be taking part in a medley centered around Ava DuVernay's incredible, powerful film Selma, and it was confirmed two days ago that she'll be performing a rendition of the gospel standard "Take My Hand, Precious Lord."
Common and John Legend picked up a Golden Globe last month for their powerful Selma song "Glory," and they certainly seem primed to take the Oscar for Best Original Song in a few weeks. They aren't nominated for any Grammys for "Glory," but they'll be performing at the telecast on Sunday anyway, and we're sure it will prove inspiring.
5. Sia's sure-to-be-interesting appearance
Sia's disappearing act has been one of the most interesting occurrences in the last 12 months of mainstream pop, and the singer/songwriter's commitment to obfuscating her identity has been impressive—when she appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live to read a mean tweet earlier this week, her back faced the camera as she dug into a jar of peanut butter. Will she bring that jar to the Grammys? Probably not! Then again, who really knows. She's found solace in the unpredictable, and for that she will have our undivided attention this Sunday.
Case in point:
7. There's plenty of eyebrow-raising collaborations planned
As the shitshow that was the Beach Boys tribute from a few years back taught the world, the Grammys telecast is a repository for, uh, strange ideas when it comes to pairing artists together onstage. This year, we get a dose of the not-totally-surprising (Beck and Chris Martin, Sam Smith and Mary J. Blige, Herbie Hancock/John Mayer/Questlove) and the huh-what? (ELO and Ed Sheeran, Jessie J and Tom Jones, Hozier and Annie Lennox). Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga's planned duet makes total sense, of course, because that's just how fucking weird 2014 was.
8. Drinking games!
Not that I know from experience, but I personally recommend dealing with the occasional (and, sometimes, persistent) tedium of award shows the same way the stars do: gathering with a few friends and seeing how much you can imbibe before you are unable to feel your face. Don't just binge drink, though! Make it fun with some rules:
-- Try to guess who's gonna win every award, and anyone who gets their guess wrong has to take a drink
-- Finish your drink if whoever wins Best New Artist makes a joke about how they're "not really new at all"
-- Take a drink any time host LL Cool J licks his lips
-- Anyone who makes a "They forgot Guru!" joke during the "In Memoriam" section must finish their entire drink and leave
-- Any time hip-hop and R&B seems to be disrespected as a genre by the awards committee, drink until you can no longer feel any pain