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Thursday, 1 March, 2001, 12:24 GMT
The Brits: Best of British pop?
Craig David and David Gray - best of British?
British pop's annual awards ceremony, the Brits, took place on Monday, with singer Robbie Williams winning three awards.

Craig David, who has appeared from nowhere to become a household name in 18 months, had six nominations, but went home with nothing.

Rock band Coldplay won best British band and best British album for Parachutes.

But have the judges got it right this year? Who should have been up for a Brit this year, but missed out? And is British music worth praising at the moment?

This debate is now closed. Read a selection of your comments below.


Your reaction


Craig David should stop bleating about his lack of recognition

Mike Parker, England
I'm amazed at all the fuss about these awards. Surely everybody over the age of 14 knows there is lots more quality outside the charts and airwaves. Reef and Radiohead are following in the footsteps of Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd by being successful despite the lack of airplay. Craig David should stop bleating about his lack of recognition, in my view his popularity is in inverse proportion to his talent.
Mike Parker, England

As boring and dull as the Grammys are they do give awards to such fields as jazz, classical and gospel. As long as the Brits continues to pander to the teenybopper demographic it (and the UK records industry) will continue to be regarded with derision.
Paul, UK (ex US)

I think that although the Brit awards may seem unfair, they are an exciting and fun part of British pop and media. Let's face it, none of us would turn down a ticket there would we? We should congratulate and be pleased for people like Robbie who have managed to do something cool with their lives.
Sarah Louise, England

I'm sorry Andrew McDonald but the reason that Eminem said what he said about Steely Dan is because they do mean nothing to most young people. They are only still around because the people who bought their records in the 70s are also still around! Just as in the same way, 16 year olds will look back with fond memories of Eminem in 20 years time. Face it - you're just showing your age. Be like me and don't be embarrassed to admit it!
Kathy, UK

I think we should rename the Brit Awards the Robbie Awards since it is always the same guy who gets all the awards every year even if there is a much more talented new artist called Craig David in competition. The show started with his name shown in the middle of the stage surrounded by giant awards as if the Brits were him. And could you tell me what David Ginola and Jamie Oliver with his wife were doing on the stage? Can we focus more about music, please?
Sylvie, UK

The Brit Awards? A complete joke!
Bob Thompson, UK


The Brits are truly the greatest celebration of mediocrity ever

Dave, UK
The Brits is yet more self- congratulation by a music industry that cares less about originality and talent and more about the almighty dollar/pound/euro. The Brits are truly the greatest celebration of mediocrity ever! With the "talents" of Robbie Williams (who should be scorned for his crimes against music) and a torrent of manufactured bands (record producers are now even manufacturing "Rock" bands...JJ72) being celebrated rather than those bands who actually write innovative and original music such as Radiohead etc. I agree with countless entries posted that the music industry will self-destruct soon, and, with a bit of luck, take second rate bands along with it.
Dave, UK

Can I just say: Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath. British music at its best.
Dale, England

I am in total agreement with Pete from England who laments over the total blanking by the British musuc Industry of Iron Maiden who have been making quality music for over 20 years. Despite no radio airplay they've also been selling out arenas and stadiums globally since the early 1980s and have recently headlined the Rock in Rio festival, probably the biggest concert in the world. But no recognition is forthcoming from the industry they have given so much to, instead it awards "bands" like A1. We really are in trouble if that is the state of things in British music.
Andy, Scotland

Eminem stated "Who the **** are Steely Dan" after winning his award. He can ask again in 20 years time when their songs will still be remembered, unlike his talentless rantings over backbeats.
Andrew MacDonald, Scotland


The awards ceremony itself is basically an overblown popularity contest

Scott, UK
The Brits is just another excuse to impose commercialism. The awards ceremony itself is basically an overblown popularity contest to praise what's considered hip or cool at the time.
Scott, UK

The Brits are becoming as unfashionable as the Grammys, with Robbie and Coldplay (medium-talented also-rans in the grand scheme of things) triumphing over Craig David, who despite his egotism is clearly the most talented man in British pop right now. People, wake up, how are we going to create great music for future generations when we give best band and album to "the new Travis" who themselves were dubbed "the new Oasis". Craig David, Artful Dodger, Eminem and Kelis are at least original and highly talented.
PG, UK

The most vulgar aspect of the Brits was the award given to A1. It is time the British music industry stopped pushing these manufactured boy and girl bands and targeting the pre-pubescent audiences who fall for these talentless, stage-school drop outs. The music industry will self-destruct (witness the massive devaluation of the charts) unless someone does something soon.
Mark Silverman, England

Not a mention of course for Iron Maiden, once arguably the biggest heavy metal band in the world, who put out another great (but ignored) album this year. I just don't know what anyone sees in the rubbish that picks up awards these days. It baffles me. Where is the compositional creativity?
Pete, England


One hopes that the stage is being set for a significant reaction against this soulless drivel

Daniel Martin, Chicago, USA
I'm in agreement with "Simon the Ex-pat" regarding the cyclical nature of pop music. Top 40 music here in the States is embarrassingly vapid at the moment, and even the "controversy" of a moron like Eminem has the distinct aroma of corporate manufacture. If history is any indication ('76 in the UK or '79 in the States for example), one hopes that the stage is being set for a significant reaction against this soulless drivel. It certainly makes me appreciate the good stuff that is out there!
Daniel Martin, Chicago, USA

The Brits should represent British music as a whole, therefore they can't really ignore manufactured bands if they have been successful. When I was a teenager most of my favourite artists didn't get a look in, and I think the Brits lacked variety back then because the whole thing was so snobbish.
Amanda, UK

Craig David gets nominated for 6 awards after an outstanding debut year in the music business yet he doesn't get an award even for best newcomer. How can that be possible? The only pop act with a certain degree of musical creditability with dance crossover falls victim to pathetic manufactured pap.
Paul Mullan, Ireland

Don't get me wrong. British music fills the air, sometimes polluted by low quality, prefab teen music (normally American music). I do agree with all the positive comments (mainly from overseas) which declare that Brit music is the best in the world.
Mario A, Mexico

I love the Brits, they just get funnier and funnier. A1 as best British Newcomers - hysterical! And Craig David not winning anything - I haven't stopped laughing yet!
Steve, England

Poor Craig David. I have never seen what is so great about Robbie Williams. And as for A1 winning best newcomer... I think that just demonstrates how rubbish Radio 1 has become over the years, that the majority of their listeners who voted did so for a talentless bunch of kids.
Jenny McDermott, Scotland


As the Jam once said the public gets what the public wants

Gary, UK
Although I don't particularly like Craig David, it's hard not to feel sympathy for him. Who will be playing A1 songs next year, let alone in 10 years time? One thing that hasn't been mentioned is that the best single, video, pop act and newcomer awards were voted for by the great British public. The parents of the 12-year-olds who selected A1 must have pretty large phone bills coming soon. As the Jam once said (and when will Weller get a lifetime achievement award?), the public gets what the public wants!
Gary, UK

Thank God, the music scene in the UK is more varied than the representation it receives at the Brits. The Brits are just a tap on the back of the big commercial scene, and don't encourage, as they should, creativity! Surprised Madonna got a gong at all with a rather daring album for an artist of her stature.
Bruno Lasnier, UK


Make them all sing and play live - people will soon make up their own minds who is good and who isn't

Colin S, UK
I'm sorry but right from my teen years I always saw the Brits as the Muppet Show! Full of weird hairstyles and clothes all worn by people who look really self-conscious but trying desperately to look like it's normal to them. Make them all sing and play live - people will soon make up their own minds who is good and who isn't.
Colin S, UK

Of course this whole thing is stupid - but just relax! Buy the records you like, and don't buy the stuff you hate!
Dave, Germany

Brit Awards? - Isle of Wight. That's rhyming slang, by the way.
Joey O'Riley, Scotland


Music is meant to be about having a good time - get those elitist chips off your shoulders

Lynne Cameron, Scotland
Re: Michael Thomas's comments - yes the Brits are a showcase but I think people should wake up to themselves and realise because something is popular doesn't mean it can't be good or creative. Twenty years from now nobody will remember who half the obscure, trendy bands are - but they will remember Robbie! And no, I am not a silly wee girl - I am 29 with tastes that vary from Robbie, all the way through to Jimi Hendrix. Stop taking yourselves so seriously, music is meant to be about having a good time - get those elitist chips off your shoulders. And Robbie - ROCK ON MATE!
Lynne Cameron, Scotland

Respect goes out to Robbie not for the awards (even though I reckon he deserved them) but for avoiding a verbal punch up with Oasis. Now that his ex is expecting a little Gallagher it's admirable that he's buried the hatchet. He's an example to youngsters across the UK. As for the awards themselves, I'm reasonably happy with them myself, I think that this year's awards are fairly realistic and in the main well deserved.
Alex Banks, Wales, living in Sweden


It is a sad state of affairs for your music industry when an award for lifetime contribution to British music is given to a band that is not even British

Sean, Ireland
It is a sad state of affairs for your music industry when an award for lifetime contribution to British music is given to a band that is not even British. It is the usual case of failing to recognise Irish people as non-British nationals. Maybe some old-timers like REM can be adopted as British next year?
Sean, Ireland

The picture of Robbie Williams with a handful of awards and Craig David empty handed symbolises the credibility of the Brit Awards. Craig David is a ray of sunshine in the declining British music industry - what a tragedy it turns its back on him. Hearsay/Inner Spin should now start writing their acceptance speeches for next year.
Dana Pickering, New Zealand

I'm getting heartily sick of Robbie Williams - that bloke has become so over-rated it's not true, and it seems that everyone is happy to collude in the fiction of his excellence, normally with something along the lines of "He's an entertainer."
Curtis B, UK

What I don't understand is: why doesn't people like Tom Waits or Nick Cave ever win these awards? Surely they've created some of the best music these past decades. I did like U2 winning a prize.
MJ, The Netherlands


I love music. It connects me with the souls of individuals in tune with Nature.

Chris Connors, USA
Music, like everything else, goes in cycles. I'd like to think that the best is yet to come. Award shows can only reward what's available, so let's support the musicians locally and encourage them when we feel they are true. I love music. It connects me with the souls of individuals in tune with Nature.
Chris Connors, USA

In terms of inventive quality pop music Britain still seems to have more than anywhere else. British culture encourages musical involvement to a MUCH greater degree than other countries. However, since airplay is hugely determined by sales and marketing, and the biggest purchasers are the 10-16 age range, the music we are all (worldwide) subjected to, tends to be aimed at that market... Perhaps if MP3 and CD burning can continue to strangle the record companies, the cost of music will rise - pushing the cost of music outside the scope of kids - lifting the age of the average consumer?
Adrian, Australia

Have we gone mad giving an award for best newcomer to A1? That should be Craig David. I can hardly believe it. Ridiculous!
Alan Grainger, Tamworth, England

Why aren't artists like Primal Scream, The Charlatans, Ian Brown and Richard Ashcroft nominated? Even The The's Naked Self album which has got to be the most overlooked album of the year. And please, please would someone PLEASE take Ronan Keating off the nomination list for Best International Male Solo Artist! He's got no right to be there. A talentless embarrassment to our country.
Jim Roche, Ireland

The Brits are an accurate representation of the current UK music scene - garbage.
Dave, UK


Cliques voting for cliques

Stephen Nelson, France
Cliques voting for cliques. Try looking at the UK music scene from another country. It's embarrassing, manufactured, commercialised tat.
Stephen Nelson, France

Why haven't Pet Shop Boys been given a "lifetime achievement award"? 16 years since West End Girls and still going strong. If the Spice Girls were eligible after 5 years then why not Neil and Chris?
Paul Harris, England

British music is still the best in the world. However, it isn't as good as it used to be. I'm 18 and can't stand any of this garage, house, r&b etc. I don't even know what it is! The 60s 70s and 80s were far superior to now. I am an avid Queen fan and will openly admit it. Music has been getting worse since Freddie died.
Richard, England

Talk about rose tinted glasses - M.A. Deal. I think you'll find the 70s produced some fine examples of manufactured pop rubbish. Think back to Gary Glitter or The Bay City Rollers! It was this type of music that led to the invention of punk, the subsequent "New Wave" and an era when British music truly set world trends. It's highly likely that a similar cycle will follow this present pattern, so let's not despair too much.
Simon, Ex-pat, Australia

The Brit Awards reflect nothing of any value in today's popular music. Therefore, they are 'The Weakest Link' - goodbye!
David P. Hughes, Canada

No matter what you say about the Brits, they are still better than our Grammys.
Brandon, USA


Rock music is as British as Big Ben

Jeff, USA
Rock music is as British as Big Ben and Britain has a great tradition of innovative and creative rock music - the Beatles, the Rolling Stones and the multitude of bands in the '80s that broke ground musically.
Jeff, USA

English music at the moment is pretty poor - there's not much original stuff out there. But I prefer blandness to the awful Destiny's Child and guy bands we have over here in the States.
Anita Porcogal, USA

This awards ceremony is no longer about music but about image. Those who make it in the now depressing world of pop music get there because of what they look like - very few have any musical talent.
Paul, UK

British chart music is and has always has been "grotesque sickly sweet pap" with of course the odd exception. The mid 90's was a purple patch with the Britpop revolution but things seem to be tailing off again with the return of manufactured artists or should I say performers. A lot of real British talent just doesn't get any daytime exposure. My personal favourite at the moment is David Gray, a huge talent.
Phil (age 41), Belgium

I would like to know why the Brits only give awards to "older" artists as "lifetime achievement" awards. Some of these artists are still putting out great and challenging music. They get Grammys in America but the Brits ignore them.
Pete, UK

I don't agree with Steve MacDonald who says that, "The Brits is a reflection of the music played on today's radio. It seems the awards tend to go to the most commercially popular acts rather than the most creative or innovative bands, groups and artists". What about bands such as Radiohead who are hardly suffering from radio-play saturation? Likewise Coldplay, who though they are undeniably successful and commercial, are not 'manufactured' and are unusual and innovative.
Rebecca Sellars, England

That show Popstars said everything there was to say about where the Brits stand. Why not have an award for Best Manufactured British Tosh instead?
Karen, UK


The bands that are successful are those that make the music that the population buys

Keith, UK
So many people in this debate are commenting on the poor quality of the current British pop scene. The bands that are successful are those that make the music that the population buys. In general music, especially singles, is bought by the youth sector (age 10 - 25). Unfortunately for fans of quality music, the current 'youth' generation has grown up in a world where creativity and imagination are banished to the toy cupboard to be replaced by game-boys, play-stations, TVs in every child's bedroom, etc. If they have not developed their mental skills, how can they understand or appreciate music that is anything more than thump-thump-thump?
Keith, UK

I find it hard to get excited about any of the nominees - and why on earth are Radiohead on the list? I didn't realise there was a category for "Most Self Indulgent Album" of the year award. I can only guess that it's the "King's new clothes" scenario all over again.
Martin, UK

The Brits have never been about recognising talent or innovation and they never will be. Does anyone who is seriously into music, really take these awards ceremonies seriously anyway? They are there to raise artists' profiles and increase sales. I say let S Club 7 win everything, will it really matter???
Conal Presho, England

Today's 'popular' music must be a contradiction in terms. Without TV advertisement, record company hype and local radio stations, as well as Radio One, this rubbish noise would never sell, only amongst the brain dead. I am from an older generation who finds dance music and teeny pop groups, in all their various forms, worse than torture. There are some good rock groups out there, Radiohead and the Manics among them and they should be dominating the airwaves. Astonishingly, I hear more of their kind of music on Radio Two than on commercial radio stations. All this manufactured pop nonsense would never have stood a chance in the 70s, when bands such as Led Zeppelin and Deep Purple were the masters.
M.A. Deal, UK


They won't get an award if few want to buy them

Clive Mitchell, UK
The Brits is about commercial success, which is about getting people to buy records. There may be great and original songs out there, but they won't get an award if few want to buy them.
Clive Mitchell, UK

I think the Brit awards might be better described as the best of British manufactured rubbish.
Alison, UK

It would have been nice to see some nominations for artists who have released music that's truly original and challenging, such as Goldfrapp's Felt Mountain album, or The The's Naked Self, rather than just the usual mainstream manufactured tosh.
Graham Adair, Scotland

Maybe I'm just getting old (25), but I do think the Brits are a bit more on the ball than they used to be. It was a good idea to have separate categories for pop, so that the high-selling low-quality teenybop stuff is ring-fenced and you don't have S Club 7 beating Radiohead. Sadly the UK music scene isn't as exciting as it was in the mid-90's, so the dearth of good nominees isn't the Brits' fault.
Paul, UK

After reading the nominees, there are none which I could say I particularly like, or would buy. This is not because I'm not into music - I couldn't be without it - but I do not feel inspired by what's on show here. Maybe I'm turning away from the lure of 'popular music' - in effect, turning into my parents!!
Allison, Scotland


Unfortunately the Brits always has been and always will be a night of industry backslapping and smug self-congratulation

Steve McDonald, UK
The Brits is a reflection of the music played on today's radio. It seems the awards tend to go to the most commercially popular acts rather than the most creative or innovative bands, groups and artists. This is a real shame since the charts are dominated by truly awful and talentless manufactured groups. Unfortunately the Brits always has been and always will be a night of industry backslapping and smug self-congratulation.
Steve McDonald, UK

How else would the vacuous pretty people feel important?
Gerry, Scotland

The nominations don't offer much in the way of originality or even good music this year. The exceptions being Badly Drawn Boy and Coldplay. The former with some truly great songs and latter whilst not being entirely original (it is still in the whiney indie mould) adds something of a twist and they do have some excellent songs. Moloko are another possibility but they aren't my cup of tea so I don't want to comment one way or the other...
Peter Kenyon, UK

I'm hoping to see Napalm Death getting some awards this year. A real manufactured teeny pop band...
Fraser, England

I think Leanne Rimes should be up for an award. She has a great voice and she sang the no 1 song for the no 1 film, Coyote Ugly.
Angela Gallacher, Scotland

As long as the grotesque sickly sweet pap that occupies the Top 40 isn't represented then there is maybe something worth celebrating. However new, innovative and critically acclaimed bands like Kinobe and Bent who don't have commercial success behind them won't be represented. It seems that the people who nominate the Brits are on a hiding to nothing really. For originality in music, which is a rare commodity these days, I prefer to look at the entrants in the Mercury Music Prize. The Brits is just a showcase and always has been.
Michael Thomas, UK

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