It was Kendrick Lamar’s night at the Grammys as, despite not taking home any of the major gongs, his performance shone the brightest and proved that really, he should have triumphed over the more generic, chart-friendly likes of Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran.
Adele’s moment in the spotlight was tainted by audio issues but other great performances came courtesy of The Weeknd, young jazz prodigy Joey Alexander and the Hamilton cast.
Sadly, controversy was notably absent from the ceremony, but this arguably allowed the music to take centre stage so perhaps it’s no bad thing.
Take a look at the best bits you missed out on:
Kendrick Lamar stole the show just like he was always going to
This is Kendrick Lamar we’re talking about. Bowie loved him, Bon Iver hails him as the best out there and even President Obama named “How Much A Dollar Cost” as his song of 2015. There was a lot of pressure on the rapper’s performance but he more than delivered, putting on a dazzling, political show hailed as a “free jazz thunderstorm” and earning an extended standing ovation. Oh and he took home a handful of gongs, too, despite somehow failing to win either Record of the Year or Album of the Year.
Lady Gaga’s David Bowie tribute left us wanting more
Bowie’s self-professed biggest fan on the planet attempted to pay tribute to her idol with a Ziggy Stardust-inspired outfit and medley performance. Some critics have criticised her efforts as “generic cruise ship”, despite the spiders and stars projected onto her face during “Space Oddity”. In her brief slot, Gaga also rattled through “Changes”, “Suffragette City”, “Rebel Rebel”, “Fame”, “Fashion”, “Let’s Dance”, “Heroes’”, “Ziggy Stardust” and there was even a hint of “Under Pressure” in there. Sadly, it was all too much in too little time but to be fair, she is an apt contender for the Thin White Duke’s throne and clearly wasn’t trying to actually be him.
Biebs won his first ever Grammy
He then went on to give a banging performance that proved his haters wrong.
Even Adele is at the mercy of technology
In proof that it happens to the best of us, what would have been an awesome performance was marred by dodgy sound caused by a piano mic falling on the strings. At some points, the audio fully failed, leaving Adele understandably frustrated. She’s not one for out there gimmicks and special effects, so it shouldn’t have been hard to give her the stage she needed.
The Taylor-Kanye beef continues
He wrote a misogynistic lyric about her, she rightly kicked off and inevitably made a not so subtle dig at him in her Album of the Year acceptance speech. Swift became the first woman to win the most coveted award twice, so congrats are due there, but her opening performance of “Out of the Woods” felt a little old hat. Let’s park 1989 and move on to something new, please?
Joey Alexander is the new name on everybody’s lips
One of the youngest ever Grammy nominees is a 12-year-old jazz prodigy and his insane piano performance was, well, just watch! (Sorry, we now feel like huge underachievers too.)
Adele gave The Weeknd a standing ovation
The Weeknd gifted the audience with two songs from Beauty Behind the Madness - “Can’t Feel My Face” and a stripped-down take on “In the Night” featuring only a piano and a cello. Adele was in raptures, jumping up from her seat to cheer him on.
Hamilton is actually worth the hype
The Broadway hip-hop hit’s opening number gave everyone a taste of what so many theatre fans are paying though the roof for. Creator Lin Manuel Miranda went on to win Best Musical Theatre Album - deservedly so given this fun and dynamic performance.
Johnny Depp paid tribute to Lemmy
Depp and his heavy metal pal Alice Cooper joined forces as the Hollywood Vampires to give Motorhead frontman Lemmy a strong send-off after he recently died suddenly of cancer.
Taylor Swift got her hair done like Anna Wintour
Pop’s biggest star is now officially taking hairstyle inspiration from the famously fearsome Vogue editor. To be fair, they’re both hugely powerful women in their own right, so it kind of figures that they should both be able to work that signature bob. Anyone else feeling…intimidated?
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