Photo courtesy of CNN
Story by Tevin Rutledge / Contributing Writer
The 59th annual Grammy Awards did not disappoint. From the performances, acceptance speeches and award winners, to political statements and technical difficulties, the Grammys still has the whole world buzzing.
As the show opened, viewers were graced with a performance from Adele, singing her hit song “Hello,” which went on to win Grammys for Song of the Year, Record of the Year and Best Solo Pop Performance later that night. Adele also claimed the coveted Album of the Year award, making her the first artist to sweep the Academy’s three major awards twice. After winning Album of the Year, Adele paid homage to Beyoncé, saying, “The ‘Lemonade’ album was so monumental and so well-thought-out and so beautiful and soul-bearing, and we all got to see another side of you that you don’t usually let us see. We appreciate that. All us artists here adore you. You are our light.”
Beyoncé was nominated a field high nine times for “Lemonade” and won awards for Best Urban Contemporary Album and Best Music Video (“Formation”). Making her first public appearance since announcing her pregnancy with twins, Beyoncé delivered a legendary performance of “Love Drought” and “Sandcastles.” Queen B showed off her breathtaking vocal range, and her performance even featured holograms of herself and her daughter, Blue Ivy Carter.
One of the biggest wins of the night belonged to Chance the Rapper, who had never won a Grammy previously. Chance took home awards for Best New Artist — the first black hip-hop artist to win since Lauryn Hill in 1999 — Best Rap Album (“Coloring Book”) and Best Rap Performance (“No Problem”). He also partnered with gospel singers Kirk Franklin and Tamela Mann to deliver a powerful performance of “How Great/All We Got” from his Grammy-winning album, “Coloring Book.”
Like always, the ceremony featured a number of tribute performances to the legends that died in the previous year. This year’s ceremony included tributes to the late Prince and George Michael. Bruno Mars and Morris Day & The Time delivered an incredible tribute to Prince, which included Bruno Mars sporting classic “Purple Rain” attire and singing the classic “Let’s Go Crazy.” One of the most talked-about moments of the night, though, was the George Michael tribute by Adele. Adele’s initial performance was marred early on by errors, which prompted her to start the performance over completely and deliver a flawless rendition of George Michael’s “Fastlove.” By the end of it, both Adele and members of the audience were led to tears.
One of the most moving performances of the night was delivered by legendary rap group A Tribe Called Quest, featuring Best New Artist nominee Anderson Paak. The politically-charged performance featured Busta Rhymes calling Donald Trump “President Agent Orange” and criticizing the immigration ban. “Resist! Resist! Resist!” Q-Tip yelled after performing their song “We The People,” as a group of immigrants was invited onstage.
Other notable performers included Ed Sheeran and Bruno Mars. Meanwhile, Lady Gaga and Metallica made for a unique combination, but were plagued with technical difficulties throughout their performance. The Weeknd delivered a strong performance of “Starboy” and “I Feel It Coming.” He was accompanied by Daft Punk, who made their first television appearance in three years. Katy Perry also debuted a new single entitled “Chained to the Rhythm” featuring Skip Marley.
The 59th annual Grammy Awards was certainly filled with several “Grammy moments” that made this show memorable.