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The 65th Grammys: A Recap

Sunday February 5 was music's biggest night of the year as the Grammys delivered an array of performances, some controversial moments, and many surprises. The show was hosted by Trevor Noah, former host of “The Daily Show”. While he did his best to keep the evening flowing smoothly, Noah often found himself in the center of an awkward moment. There was much anticipation leading up to the evening. With Adele, Beyoncé, Harry Styles, and Kendrick Lamar nominated head to head in multiple categories including Album of the Year, Record of the Year, and Song of the Year, it seemed like it could be anyone's game. Here are some of the stand out moments from the 65th annual Grammy Awards. 

 

Beyoncé Makes History 

After entering the night with an astounding nine nominations, Beyoncé set the record for most career wins at the Grammys when her album Renaissance won Best Dance/Electronic Music Album. The record breaking win was Beyoncés fourth of the evening, bringing her career total to 32 wins. Her three other wins were for Best Dance Recording, Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance, and Best R&B Song. Although it was a successful evening for the artist, she was once again snubbed for Album of the Year with the award going to Harry Styles instead. 

 

Kim Petras and "Unholy"

Kim Petras became the first openly transgender woman to win a Grammy after she and Sam Smith picked up an award for their song “Unholy”. The win was for the Best Pop Duo/Group Performance category and beat out other top artists such as Doja Cat, BTS, and ABBA. In her speech, Petras thanked the many transgender icons that came before her, Madonna, and her mother for all her inspiration and support. The duo also drew some controversy for their so-called “satanic” performance of their Grammy-winning song. While many viewers praised the ground breaking visuals, others deemed them "satanic", "anti-christian", and "sexually suggestive". 

 

50 Years of Hip-Hop 

In addition to performances by nominated artists, this year's Grammys featured a performance dedicated to celebrating fifty years of hip-hop as an industry-defining genre. Aiming to highlight the rich history and culture of the genre, the performance featured over 25 artists including Big Boi, De La Soul, Missy Elliott, Lil Baby, Lil Wayne, and Queen Latifah. The electrifying performance was well received by both viewers at home and the live audience. Also included was a tribute to Takeoff, a rapper best known as a member of the trio Migos, who was killed last November in a targeted shooting. 

 

Harry Styles

The evening ended with the highly anticipated presentation of the award for Album of the Year. After an interesting segment in which selected super-fans held a focus group to discuss which of the nominees deserved to win, Harry Styles was announced as the winner for his album “Harry’s House”.  Long time Styles fan, Reina Lafantaisie, was given the honor of presenting Styles with the award and the two seemed equally overcome with shock and joy. The win was a controversial one, with many arguing that Beyoncé deserved the award instead. The controversy was furthered by Styles’ acceptance speech during which he stated that “This doesn’t happen to people like me very often and this is so, so nice. Thank you very much”.  The apparent intention of this note was to acknowledge his humble beginnings and lack of connection to the industry, but many saw it as a tone deaf denial of his privilege. 

 

Once again, award season is proving to be as glitzy and dramatic as ever. With a long awaited return to a pre-pandemic format there are still many more moments of suspense and controversy to come. Up next are the BAFTA awards on February 19th and the highly anticipated Academy Awards on March 12th.

 

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