Pop Culture Princess

Pop Culture Princess
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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

I've got The Best Song blues

Things are getting worse for the Best Original Song category at the upcoming Oscars,folks;with only two tunes up for the award,there is now talk that live performances of the nominees will not take place that night.

This is too much to be borne,in my opinion! Bad enough that we're not given a respectable number of songs to compete for this award,the nominated artists won't even get a chance to sing as well? Talk about adding insult to injury here. Granted,the Best Song performances have, at times, become moments of unintentional comic relief or crimes against the art of music itself but cutting them out altogether seems unduly harsh.

Part of the fun of Oscar night is in seeing how the Best Song nominees will be showcased. Taking them out of the big show is a true letdown,plus how will they fill up that time? Everyone loves to complain about the overlong running time of the Oscars but snipping out these musical interludes is no guarantee of brevity.

Seeing who will be singing is another Oscar night treat. Sometimes you're lucky enough to get the original singer perform the song and other times,the person chosen to "interpret" that particular tune offers up a rather unique rendition that's hard to forget(I still recall Lou Rawls and Melba Moore singing "Take My Breath Away" from Top Gun and probably will until my dying day):

However,not performing won't hurt either one of this year's nominees in terms of odds on winning. Eminem didn't even make an appearance or had anyone else sing "Lose Yourself" from his flick 8 Mile back in 2002 and it beat out the likes of U2,who did perform that evening. The stunned look on Barbra Streisand's face as she announced the winner was,as Kathy Griffin might say,a gift basket from heaven:

Sitting out the show is one thing when it's the artist's option,it is a very different deal altogether when the Academy Awards themselves choose to put this portion of the program out to pasture.

You would think that many of the singers-turned-actors who are members of the Academy would be raising a bit of a fuss about this. Perhaps they are doing so,behind the scenes,since a good number of them such as Streisand,Bette Midler and Jennifer Hudson have made some of their best career moments on the Oscar stage:

Nothing is set in stone at this point,yet I fear the worst for the Best Original Song section,both this year and beyond. Let us not sing a swan song for this category too soon,however. A last minute reprieve is rather over dramatic but hard for entertainers to resist. In the end,music will be part of the Academy Awards one way or another and hopefully it will be to celebrate victories instead of consoling the losers:

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