The 61st Grammy Awards were everything the 72nd BAFTA Awards were not: colorful. Female talent was celebrated time and time again, a pint-sized kid upstaged his legendary grandmother, Twitter bonded over a questionable tribute, and a well-known rapper dismissed the importance of the Grammys altogether. Let’s delve deeper into the evening’s most memorable moments, shall we?
Sisterhood was the name of the game from the get-go, with Lady Gaga, Jada Pinkett Smith, Michelle Obama, and Jennifer Lopez joining host Alicia Keys on stage during the earliest moments of the show. Each celebrated the ability of music to uplift, share, tell a story, and feel truly free, with Keys summing it up perfectly: “Do you feel that love in the building? This is love. This is life. This is living. This is light, and all because of music. Music is so powerful.”
Childish Gambino’s “This Is America” is no stranger to making headlines, particularly as its ambitious video was rife with racial symbolism and violent imagery. Now, it has made history by becoming the first rap song to take home the prestigious Song of the Year award. It also won in the Best Music Video and Best Rap/Sung Performance categories. Also making history? Cardi B, who became the first woman to win Best Rap Album.
Drake is famous for boycotting the Grammys, so just the fact that he showed up lands him a spot on this list. He was there to pick up his Best Rap Song award for “God’s Plan”. Something else everyone’s still talking about? How the broadcast of Drake’s acceptance speech cut to commercial before he was finished speaking. Were the producers cutting him off deliberately or did they simply assume he was done? You decide.
The show stealer of the evening wasn’t an A-lister, but someone you have never heard of: Raif-Henok Emmanuel Kendrick. The nine-year-old is the grandson of legendary crooner Diana Ross, and came onstage to introduce his “grand mommy”, stealing our hearts with the words: “Did she say little guy? I’m almost 4 foot 9!”
Tribute vs Twitter
While Jennifer Lopez’s tribute to the iconic US record label Motown was high on energy and full of killer dance moves, the question on everyone’s lips was: “Why?” Not only is she of Latin-American descent, but she’s also known for her dance-y pop records. It’s no wonder that many felt the likes of Gladys Knight, Jennifer Hudson, or Beyoncé would’ve been a better choice. And Twitter agreed.
— Baby Grl💙 (@Blkconnoisseur2) February 11, 2019
Alicia Keys sings, writes songs, produces records, looks incredible sans makeup, and is active in the fight against HIV and AIDS – and can play two pianos at a time, apparently. The 15-time Grammy Award winner astounded audiences worldwide when she honored some of her favorite artists during a musical interlude, showing off her mad musical skills by playing two pianos at once before performing hits like “Killing Me Softly” and “Unforgettable”.