In the world of 21st Century American musical spectacle, the MTV Video Music Awards exists in a category all its own. Way less reserved than the Grammy Awards (but no BET Awards), the VMAs have over the years provided plenty of water-cooler fodder, and this year's upcoming show has just added more bang: Producers just announced the addition of pop singer Rihanna and R&B crooner Frank Ocean as performers.
The performance roster was already pretty thick with superstars: Slated to gig live at the Staples Center during the Thursday, Sept. 6, live broadcast are country-pop princess Taylor Swift, Bay Area punk vets Green Day, resurgent pop star Pink, and Brit boy band One Direction. With the addition of Rihanna and Ocean, the lineup is dense with some of today's biggest-selling artists.
Which isn't to say the music world will necessarily be altered the next day. We know what a Taylor Swift performance is like, and One Direction lacks the heft to cause a commotion, let alone a magical moment. Whether Pink swings through the air on a trapeze is relatively unimportant, and Rihanna will walk the tightrope, careful to be just risque enough to keep the delay button at bay. Green Day will play punk rock like punk rockers do and, based on the show I saw a few weeks ago, will probably be pretty great.