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Kendrick Lamar, Taylor Swift and one Australian rule the Grammy Awards

For one night we were all Tim Munro. All 24 million of us in Australia.

The better-known locals – Courtney Barnett, Tame Impala, Keith Urban and Hiatus Kaiyote – left the Grammy Awards empty-handed, probably to the relief of the shy Barnett in particular.

However, the hitherto little recognised Munro, a flautist from Queensland, was a clear stand-out for a country that loves winners.

Munro, now based in Chicago, won his third Grammy – which is three more than Cold Chisel and Powderfinger, and two more than Kylie Minogue – in the category of best chamber music/small ensemble performance, for Filament by his sextet Eighth Blackbird.

Away from partisan eyes, the man garnering a bit more attention in Staples Centre, which usually hosts the Los Angeles Lakers basketball team, was an LA local, Kendrick Lamar.


Nominated for 11 awards and vying for many of the major prizes with the pop culture behemoth Taylor Swift, the hip-hop producer and performer put on an incendiary and compellingly political performance in a show notable for its overall politeness and blandness.

Having watched Lamar's The Blacker The Berry, a song about black identity in the face of violence and oppression, few would have been surprised to see him win best rap album (To Pimp A Butterfly), best rap performance and best rap song (both for Alright) and best rap/sung collaboration (These Walls).

That said, Swift, who opened the awards telecast with a barnstorming Out Of The Woods, did rather well herself. Pre-telecast she won best music video (for a song featuring Kendrick Lamar interestingly) and then added best pop vocal album and album of the year for 1989.

In her acceptance speech, Swift seemed to take a not-so-subtle dig at one ego not present in the room, Kanye West, who recently said of her that "I made that bitch famous".

Pointing out that she was the first woman to win album of the year twice, Swift said "I want to say to all the young women out there, there are going to be people along the way who are going to try to undercut your success or take credit for your accomplishments or your fame."

Credit and fame was shared elsewhere though as another pop hit, Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars' worldwide success Uptown Funk (best pop duo/group performance and record of the year) and Ed Sheeran's Thinking Out Loud (song of the year and best pop solo performance) were multiple winners alongside the surging soul/rock group Alabama Shakes (best rock performance, rock song and alternative album, the category that included Tame Impala).

Meanwhile, in the who-would-have-believed-it-a-year-ago category, the one-time human headline/walking punchline Justin Bieber won his first Grammy, best dance recording, for his collaboration with Skrillex and Diplo.

So far Kanye has not claimed credit for this award. Or for Tim Munro's. But it is early days.

Album of the Year

1989 – Taylor Swift

Song of the Year

Thinking Out Loud – Ed Sheeran and Amy Wadge

Record of the Year

Uptown Funk – Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars

Best Rap Album

To Pimp a Butterfly – Kendrick Lamar

Best Pop Vocal Album

1989 – Taylor Swift

Best Pop Solo Performance

Thinking Out Loud – Ed Sheeran

Best Rock Song

Don't Wanna Fight – Alabama Shakes

Best New Artist

Meaghan Trainor