“I don’t rehearse too much,” Jack White told the Hollywood Reporter this week when they asked about his Grammys 2013 prep. But his admission was really more of a brag. White’s face-melting guitar work — witnessed here with searing performances of “Love Interruption” and “Freedom at 21” (from his thrice-nominated album Blunderbuss) proved that playing live, for him, is a lot like breathing, or matching his outfits: It just comes naturally.
Decked out in an Elvis-worthy black suit adored with blue sequins and loads of rhinestones, White reunited with singer Ruby Amanfu for “Love Interruption.” The pair kept eye contact (and Amanfu even stroked White’s chest). Hey — they’ve got well-documented chemistry. After an abbreviated version of the Blunderbuss single, White quickly switched from his all-female band to his second, all-male group for “Freedom at 21.” If he was upset that he’d lost Best Rock Song and Best Rock Album to the Black Keys at the Grammys pre-broadcast show, he took out all that anger on his guitar. But he might not need to be disappointed — he has one more opportunity to win tonight, for Album of the Year.
The Nashville (by way of Detroit) musician has played the Grammy stage before. Back in his White Stripes days, White played “Seven Nation Army/Death Letter” at the 46th Grammy Awards. And he won’t spend a lot of time basking in post-Grammys glow: White told the BBC last week that he’s already written 20 songs for his next solo record.