The 58th Annual Grammy Awards were truly a sight to behold. This year's program restored my faith in both the telecast and the music industry. Though her album definitely wasn't the best of 2015 (don't hate me), I loved Taylor Swift's uplifting rebuttal to Kanye West's misogynistic lyric about her on his The Life of Pablo track, "Famous". Kendrick Lamar delivered a breathtaking, passionate, politically-charged medley that was a powerful display of blackness at a time when America most definitely needs to see it. Despite some technical sound issues and a few uncharacteristic bum notes, Adele still managed to give us all the feels. And Lady Gaga oh so fully committed to her show-stopping tribute to the late great David Bowie. There were a few missteps during the 3.5 hour broadcast (like Pitbull's lame collab with Robin Thicke and Travis Barker), but every performer ultimately brought their A-game, and there was rarely a dull moment.
That can't be said for the fashion. The ladies always bring it. And even when it's bad, it's still interesting to see. But fellas, you continue to play it safe. So safe! I'm not a big fan of red carpet best dressed lists because save for a change in fabric, a peak lapel, or a gaudy pattern, the differences between tuxedos are so subtle that the red carpet often looks like a gathering of formalwear-clad zombies. There were a few that I liked.
Jack Antonoff, in a daring move, actually wore a color other than black in his tux. It was a classic offering, but combined with his glasses and the seemingly miniature bow tie, it effectively showcased his personality.
Mark Ronson stepped the furthest away from convention wearing a midnight blue satin jacket with nothing more than a t-shirt underneath. With beautifully cut trousers, a slightly lower than normal neckline on the tee, and some fab hair, he pulled off awards show cool in a way that no one else did that night.
There were also many that I didn't like. Some guys just looked like they gave up. Like they were going over to a friend's house to play video games. Or like The Grammys was just a pit stop on the way to the grocery store.
A$AP Rocky is often celebrated by the fashion community for his daring fashion sense, and he's one of the few rappers to truly connect with luxury designers. But this. I don't know what this is. He's pictured here with his mother, and it looks like she knitted this sweater for him last week. He's so nice to her he even offered to carry her handbag while they walked down the red carpet.
DJ Khaled really tried. For a guy that we usually see on Snapchat in extra large tees and gold chains, he cleans up pretty well. But it's his extra large bowtie here that gives the impression he's out of his comfort zone when it comes to dressing like a grown up. Bigger isn't always better, bro.
And Johnny Depp, along with his Hollywood Vampires "supergroup" bandmates Alice Cooper and Joe Perry, looked like any drunk dude you'd find in the back of a dive bar in any city. Unkempt, shaggy, over-accessorized. Just because one of your most famous movie roles is that of a pirate doesn't mean you have to stay in character.
But in the end, it was Lady Gaga who showed these guys how to push the envelope. I know what you're thinking. She walked the red carpet in a dress. How can any guy compete with that? Well, she was paying tribute to one of the biggest musical and style icons of our lifetime. Bowie was a futuristic risk taker when it came to fashion, and Ziggy Stardust was this extraterrestrial being that wore out of this world bejeweled jumpsuits. Her custom designed Marc Jacobs dress is an homage to Ziggy Stardust's legacy as a fearless trailblazer. And her killer pantsuit during the performance?
Lady Gaga pushes the fashion envelope in a way that no other woman does and every man seems afraid to try. In paying tribute to a fallen icon of men's style, she defied convention and took more risks than every other person on that red carpet. The biggest influence she channeled was Bowie's disregard for what was popular or deemed acceptable. She channeled his bravado, his verve, his peculiar taste.
Alas, the best dressed men of the Grammys red carpet delivered in a consistent and predictable way. But it was Gaga who, in pulling inspiration from one of the most influential men's style icons of all time, exhibited the best men's style of the night.