Canuck: The Musical

By Nick Craddock

The Grammy Awards never surprise in their ability to showcase several artists that can’t sing well live (or simply can’t sing well), and rarely fail to showcase a fair bit of the musical talent from the Great White North.

French-Canadian rock band Arcade Fire, which was up for three awards Sunday, won the Grammy for the Album of the Year.

Other Canucks with multiple Grammy nominations included Drake aka “Wheelchair Jimmy” (4), Neil Young (3), Michael Buble (2) and Justin Bieber (1).

Compared to some of the other major award shows, such as the Oscars or the Emmys, Canadians are much better represented at the Grammys for some inexplicable reason. Perhaps syrup is good for relaxing the vocal chords?

Bieber was shut out (cue downward spiral of career here), but it’s only a matter of time before his rabid fans mobilize to form a standing army, and violently take back the Grammy for Best New Artist from Esperanza Spalding.

Spalding also edged out Drake in the Best New Artist category; however, you might argue that Drake was undeserving of any award because he lacks the street credential (I don’t say “street cred” because I have none) of other hip-hop artists. Drake’s character on the Canadian teen drama “Degrassi” may have been crippled as a result of a gunshot, but 50 Cent is still walking around on his two feet after being shot nine times in real life. Score one for Fitty, sorry Drizzy!

Well before Bieber and Drake’s rise to fame, Canadian musicians, though numerous, could also be among the most polarizing.

Take for example Nickelback, which is either adored by people or absolutely hated. The group has spawned the Facebook page “Can this pickle get more fans than Nickelback.” As it turns out, people really like pickles. Whether that be dills or sweet gherkins has yet to be decided by the Facebook community.

Also consider Avril Lavigne’s continued attempt to win the masses over with her punk rock, unnecessary-tie-wearing-stick-it-to-the-man ways.

Whatever your thoughts on the work of varying Canadian musicians, the gem of all Canadian music remains the national anthem, “O Canada,” a simplistic yet catchy little tune.

“The Star-Spangled Banner” is not a worse anthem, but it has been complicated many times over by artists singing the mono-syllabic “brave,” as if it were 17 syllables. Sometimes an artist’s rendition includes distracting hand gestures, too; for example: Flail your hand upwards when hitting a high note, flail it downwards when hitting a low note or flail it continuously if your name is Mariah Carey.

American artists had better get back to basics (anthem included) or they risk losing out on more Album of the Year honors to indie rock bands from the strangest province in Canada.

The musical talent of the Great White North is “fancy huh?”

Awwww yeahhh!