Kanye West may have been in Berlin eating dinner alone (if you know, you know), but the 60th Annual Grammy Awards will certainly go down in history, boasting one of the most rap-centric groups of nominees ever, as well as, sadly, a pathetic number of statues handed out to women. Winners aside, the show delivered an impressive series of flamboyant performances, poignant messages and very first wins. Here’s what we enjoyed…
7 WONDERS: GRAMMYS 2018
Kesha, Blue Ivy and Lorde were all highlights.
Kendrick Stole Our Hearts
After witnessing Kendrick Lamar’s performance last night, we’re in no doubt why he was chosen to open the show. Performing possibly the most captivating TV performance of his career to date, the man’s medley of songs from album DAMN – that rendition of “XXX” though – was spectacular to say the least. From his gut-wrenching lyric “America, God bless it if it’s good to you”, to that haunting moment when his dancers fell to the ground at the sound of gun shots – it was little surprise he ended up with a golden trophy by the end of the night.
Lorde Made Her Statement
So though many artists carried or displayed a white rose in honour of the Time’s Up movement against sexual harassment and discrimination in the entertainment industry, our girl Lorde had a slightly singular approach. By literally sewing an excerpt from a work by conceptual artist Jenny Holzer – on a card stitched with red thread to the back of her red Valentino dress – the (only female) Album of the Year nominee was determined to get her message across.
THAT Kesha Performance
Can we just take a moment to acknowledge Kesha’s performance please? After victoriously returning to the stage – with her own Grammy squad featuring Cyndi Lauper, Camila Cabello, and Julia Michaels, we might add – the singer’s performance of “Prayer” was truly a testament to the power of women’s solidarity. Singing, “Some say in life, you’re gonna get what you give / But some things only God can forgive” – it seemed that most were fighting back the tears.
Camila Cabello Supports Dreamers
And on that note… The night became even more poignant with Cuban-Mexican singer Camila Cabello taking the stage to denounce Trump’s proposal to scrap the Obama-era scheme. Calling for people to continue fighting for the protection for 1.8 million young migrants known as Dreamers – the final moments of her speech earned justified applause from the audience, with everyone from bestie Lorde to the Carters clapping in support.
Though summer is long over, we definitely felt the heat when Riri took the stage. With a flower in hair to accompany her sassy moves, she performed last year’s hit track “Wild Thoughts” along with DJ Khaled and Bryson Tiller, who also gave us some satisfying vocals (of course). Infusing our senses with was an explicit celebration of the African diaspora across borders and generations, the performance was visually exhilarating, complete with Josephine Baker vibes, 70s Blaxploitation references and Sun Ra’s celestial visions.
Gambino’s First Win
After hinting at retirement from the music industry last summer, it was dope to see Childish Gambino – aka Donald Glover – win Best Traditional R’n’B performance for “Redbone”. During last night’s event, the Georgia-bred artist gave us some serious feels as he sang under the glow of a blue-toned spotlight – killing us completely with his crystal falsetto – and not to mention those smooth Marvin Gaye vibes. An instant highlight.
Blue Takes Control
Speaking of applause – there was a certain someone who wasn’t having it that evening – and that was none other than 6-year-old Blue Ivy. Though any of us would love to have parents as cool as Jay-Z and Beyoncé, it seems even they can’t escape from embarrassing their child. Shooting her parents a dictating gaze, with a nonchalant “calm down” gesture, it was clear who really runs things in their household.