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Here’s our full coverage of the historic 2021 Grammys

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Billie Eilish, Beyoncé and Megan Thee Stallion
(Jay L. Clendenin/Los Angeles Times | Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times)

Watch here for live updates on winners, performances, the red carpet, the COVID-impacted telecast and more.

Billie Eilish wins record of the year and celebrates Megan Thee Stallion

A woman with green and black hair raising a hand to her face with long black nails
Billie Eilish
(ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Nobody seemed more surprised than Billie Eilish when she won record of the year at the 2021 Grammys.

Eilish was recognized for “Everything I Wanted,” a song she co-wrote with her brother and collaborator Finneas O’Connell.

In accepting her award, the L.A. musician said that she had expected the award to go to Megan Thee Stallion, who earlier in the evening won multiple Grammys, including for new artist and rap song.

Eilish devoted the first half of her speech speaking directly to Megan and celebrating her achievements.

“You deserve this,” said Eilish. “You had a year that I think is untoppable. You are a queen, I want to cry thinking about how much I love you.”

This marks back-to-back record of the year wins for Eilish, who took the award last year for her song “Bad Guy.” She won all four of the top prizes at the 2020 Grammys, which included new artist, song of the year (“Bad Guy”) and album of the year (“When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?”).

The other nominees were:

  • “Black Parade” — Beyoncé
  • “Colors” — Black Pumas
  • “Rockstar” — DaBaby featuring Roddy Ricch
  • “Say So” — Doja Cat
  • “Don’t Start Now” — Dua Lipa
  • “Circles” — Post Malone
  • “Savage” — Megan Thee Stallion featuring Beyoncé
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Cardi B, Megan Thee Stallion make ‘WAP’ less NSFW for the Grammys

Megan Thee Stallion performing on a giant screen
Megan Thee Stallion perform on screen at the 63rd Grammy Award outside Staples Center.
(Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times)

No need to grab a bucket and a mop. Megan Thee Stallion and Cardi B already wiped the floor with their fellow Grammys performers Sunday night.

After opening her Grammys set with her latest single, “Up,” Cardi B was joined onstage by Megan Thee Stallion for a steamy, live rendition of their hit collaboration, “WAP,” which practically broke the internet upon its release last summer.

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Lil Baby, Killer Mike, Tamika Mallory speak out against police brutality at the 2021 Grammys

Lil Baby performs during the iHeartRadio Album Release Party in 2020.
Lil Baby performs at the iHeartRadio Album Release Party in 2020.
(Kevin Winter / Getty Images for iHeartMedia)

Atlanta hip-hop star Lil Baby delivered a chilling performance of his 2020 protest anthem, “The Bigger Picture,” at this year’s Grammys. The song was nominated for rap song and rap performance.

As Lil Baby spit verses in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, actors played out harrowing scenes inspired by real life violence against African Americans, as well as the 2020 uprisings that took place in cities across the United States. Proceeds from the song’s sales benefited the National Assn. of Black Journalists, the Bail Project and Black Lives Matter, as well as a fund for Breonna Taylor, who was shot dead in her bed by Louisville, Ky., police.

“It’s bigger than black and white / It’s a problem with the whole way of life,” rapped Lil Baby. “It can’t change overnight / But we gotta start somewhere.”

Surrounded by protesters wielding Black Lives Matter signs, New York civil rights activist Tamika Mallory took the podium for her own cameo — which included a plea to President Biden. “It’s a state of emergency,” said Mallory, “a hell of a 400 years. President Biden, we demand justice, equity, policy and everything else that freedom encompasses. ... This is not a trend, this is our lives.”

Killer Mike also appeared for a striking surprise verse from his Run the Jewels cut “Walking in the Snow.” “You so numb you watch the cops choke out a man like me / And ‘til my voice goes from a shriek to whisper, “I can’t breathe,” he rhymed. “And you sit there in the house on couch and watch it on TV / The most you give’s a Twitter rant and call it a tragedy.”

“Until freedom!” the performers chanted, in reference to Mallory’s nonprofit organization, Until Freedom.

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Taylor Swift’ historic Grammy win for album ties her with Sinatra, Wonder and Simon

 Taylor Swift a
Taylor Swift accepts the award for Album of the Year at the 63rd Grammy Award outside Staples Center.
(Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times)

Taylor Swift’s surprise pandemic album “Folklore” has won the Grammy for album of the year and put her in the hallowed company of Stevie Wonder, Frank Sinatra and Paul Simon.

It marks Swift’s third career win for album of the year, following trophies for “Fearless” in 2010 and “1989" in 2016.

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H.E.R.'s ‘I Can’t Breathe’ takes Grammy for song of the year

H.E.R. and Tiara Thomas accepts the award for Song Of The Year at the 63rd Grammy Award outside Staples Center.
(Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times)

Singer, songwriter and guitarist H.E.R. has won the Grammy Award for song of the year for her 2020 protest track, “I Can’t Breathe,”

Written in memory of George Floyd and the many Black Americans who died at the hands of police, the deeply ruminative R&B ballad became one of many songs that soundtracked the surge of Black Lives Matter protests across the country.

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Dua Lipa’s fans proud of her ‘growth’ with those Grammys dance moves

Dua Lipa
(Christina House/Los Angeles Times)

If you don’t wanna see Dua Lipa dancing with somebody — don’t tune in to the Grammys.

Fans are raving on social media about the “Future Nostalgia” artist’s high-energy performance at Sunday’s 63rd Grammy Awards. During the first half of the show, Lipa performed a medley of her hit singles “Don’t Start Now” and “Levitating,” featuring rapper DaBaby.

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Grammys pay tribute to Little Richard, John Prine and Kenny Rogers

 Brandi Carlile
Brandi Carlile
(Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times)

In years past, when the Grammy Awards ceremony paused to honor those musicians, producers and industry figures who have died in the year prior, the show’s producers scheduled it late in the event after most of the performances, giddy reception speeches and requisite Taylor Swift and Beyoncé audience cutaways had hooked viewers.

Needless to say, it’s been a long year and the devastation has been so harrowing that it only made sense that, this year, the show’s producers devoted extended airtime to the lives of so many musical spirits. Slotted after Swift had performed a trio of songs and the Troubadour’s night manager Rachelle Erratchu had awarded the pop solo performance trophy, a bunch of primo musicians honored a few of the fallen.

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Post Malone brings a little bit of edge with his moody ‘Hollywood’s Bleeding’

Post Malone at the American Music Awards.
Post Malone at the American Music Awards.
(AFP)

And now for something completely different: Post Malone with a dark and moody performance of “Hollywood’s Bleeding.”

Malone is nominated for three awards at the 2021 Grammys. Record of the year and song of the year for “Circles,” and album of the year for “Hollywood’s Bleeding,” his third album.

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Megan Thee Stallion channels classic Hollywood glam in Grammys performance

Megan Thee Stallion on "Saturday Night Live."
(NBC)

Fresh off of being named the best new artist at the 2021 Grammys, Megan Thee Stallion took to the stage and showed the audience just why she’s one of the most exciting performers around right now.

Channeling classic Hollywood glam in all its glitzy, glittery glory, Megan performed a duo of songs — “Body” and “Savage” — before returning to the stage a bit later to join Cardi B to perform “WAP.”

Megan then went on to win the rap song Grammy for “Savage.” It’s also nominated for record of the year and won earlier today for rap performance.

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Maren Morris anchors block of country performances

Maren Morris and John Mayer
Maren Morris and John Mayer perform during a pre-taped segment for the 63rd Grammys at the LA Convention Center.
(Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times)

Maren Morris closed out a block of performances from female country stars with a rendition of “The Bones.”

Picking up after Miranda Lambert — who introduced her “Texas gal pal” after her own performance — Morris was joined by John Mayer and his trademark guitar riffs.

“The Bones,” from Morris’ second album, “Girls,” was among those nominated for country song at the 2021 Grammys.

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Mickey Guyton is the first Black female country artist to perform on Grammy Awards

Mickey Guyton performs for a pre-taped segment for the 63rd Grammys at the LA Convention Center.
Mickey Guyton performs for a pre-taped segment for the 63rd Grammys at the LA Convention Center.
(Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times)

Mickey Guyton became the first Black female country artist to perform on music’s highest-profile awards show when she sang her “Black Like Me” at the 63rd Grammy Awards ceremony on Sunday.

“It’s a hard life on Easy Street / Just white painted picket fences far as you can see,” she sang, backed by a churchy choir, in the midtempo cut built on stately piano and yearning steel guitar. “If you think we live in the land of the free / You should try to be Black like me.”

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Harry Styles wins the Grammy for pop solo performance — and is mysteriously censored

Harry Styles performs at the Forum on Dec. 13, 2019.
(HELENE PAMBRUN)

British pop star Harry Styles accepted his first Grammy on Sunday for his 2020 single, “Watermelon Sugar,” from his 2019 album “Fine Line,” which was awarded the Grammy for pop solo performance.

Styles is also nominated for pop album and music video this year — the latter of which he lost to Beyoncé. Donning a pink feather boa and yellow tartan blazer, Styles appeared stunned to accept the honors for pop solo performance, during a distanced ceremony at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

For reasons unclear, a portion of his acceptance speech was mysteriously cut.

“Wow,” he said. “To everyone who made this record with me, thank you so much. This was the first song we wrote after [my] first album came out during a day off in Nashville. And I just want to say thanks to Tom, Tyler and Mitch and everyone. Rob Stringer and everyone at Columbia, my manager Jeffrey who has always nudged me to be better and never pushed me and thank you so much, and feel very grateful to be here, thank you. [Muted speech] Thank you so much. I feel very honored to be among all you, so thank you so much.”

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Welcome Silk Sonic -- Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak -- to the Grammys

 Trevor Noah with Silk Sonic (Anderson .Paak and Bruno Mars)
Silk Sonic (Anderson Pack and Bruno Mars), Trevor Noah
(Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times)

It’s not a bad way to launch a project.

The soul-funk super-duo Silk Sonic has released only two tracks — and one was a minute-long “Silk Sonic Intro” — but at the 63rd Grammy Awards ceremony in Los Angeles, Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak took center stage during prime time. Or, rather, performed amid a GIF-friendly cosmic realm that suggested a “Soul Train” set from 1972.

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Taylor Swift’s performance brings cottagecore magic to the Grammys

Taylor Swift in a 2019 performance.
Taylor Swift in a 2019 performance.
(Evan Agostini / Invision / Associated Press)

Taylor Swift’s Grammys performance seemed like something out of a fairy tale.

In a medley performance of “Cardigan,” “August” and “Willow,” Swift welcomed the audience into a grassy, woodsy set embodying everyone’s cottagecore dreams.

Joining Swift in her performance were collaborators Jack Antonoff and Aaron Dessner.

Among the Grammys Swift is up for Sunday night are song of the year (for “Cardigan”), pop vocal album and album of the year.

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Curious where John Legend was when he won a Grammy? We have the answer

John Legend
(Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times)

John Legend accepted his third overall Grammy Award for R&B album from his kitchen.

On Sunday, model Chrissy Teigen filmed her husband’s nonchalant reaction to his big win, which was announced during the Grammys pre-show. Legend received the honor for his work on “Bigger Love,” besting fellow nominees Ant Clemons, Giveon, Luke James and Gregory Porter.

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Dua Lipa takes to the stage for a polished performance of ‘Levitating’ and ‘Don’t Start Now’

dua

Dua Lipa and backup dancers striking a pose onstage
Dua Lipa at the 2020 American Music Awards.
(Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images for dcp)

Dua Lipa — who won the new artist Grammy in 2019 — took to the Grammys stage for a slick back-to-back performance of “Levitating” and “Don’t Start Now.”

Both songs are from the English singer-songwriter’s latest album “Future Nostalgia,” which is among the nominees for album of the year and pop vocal album.

In a video segment that introduced her performance, Dua Lipa mentioned that “doing music was only a pipe dream,”

Returning to the stage to join Dua Lipa in her performance of “Levitating” was DaBaby, who had just performed his “Rockstar” earlier in the show.

But the highlight of the segment was Dua Lipa’s polished rendition of “Don’t Start Now.” The song is up for record of the year, song of the year and pop solo performance.

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Haim bring up the show’s energy with a performance of ‘The Steps’

Haim
(Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times)

Three-piece Los Angeles rock-act Haim closed out the first round of socially distant performances with a rendition of its Grammy-nominated song “The Steps.”

It marks the first ever Grammy performance for the siblings, whose “Women in Music Pt. III” is up for album of the year.

The performance breathed a bit of energy into the telecast, which understandably has a different feel because of its socially distant safety precautions.

It was also a fun showcase of sisters Alana, Este and Danielle Haim as they seamlessly transitioned among instruments during the song.

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Puerto Rican stars Bad Bunny, Jhay Cortez bring their global hit ‘Dakiti’ to the 2021 Grammys

Bad Bunny
(Bad Bunny’s Facebook)

Bad Bunny and Jhay Cortez performed their jaunty Latin pop hit, “Dakiti,” at the 2021 Grammys, the lead single from Bad Bunny’s third studio album, “El Último Tour Del Mundo,” which was released in 2020.

Illuminated by warm neon lights, the two reggaetón stars took the stage as the lone Spanish-language performers at the Los Angeles Convention Center. They stuck around for Dua Lipa’s performance of “Levitating,” during which Bad Bunny was filmed shimmying along.

Bad Bunny is the most-streamed artist of 2020. He is nominated in two categories at this year’s ceremony. “Un Día,” his joint pop number with Dua Lipa, J Balvin and Tainy, was nominated for pop/group performance, and his 2020 album, “YHLQMDLG,” is nominated for Latin pop or urban album.

In 2020, his collaborative album with Colombian rapper J Balvin, “Oasis,” was nominated for Latin alternative or urban album.

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DaBaby, Roddy Ricch helm stunning, orchestral performance of ‘Rockstar’ at the Grammys

DaBaby and Roddy Ricch. Credit: Noel Vasquez/Getty Images; Prince Williams/Wireimage
(Noel Vasquez/Getty Images; Prince Williams/Wireimage)

Rapper DaBaby took the stage at the Los Angeles Convention Center to perform an orchestral rendition of his 2020 mega hit with Roddy Ricch, “Rockstar.”

The song is nominated for record of the year, melodic rap performance and rap song. It is the first time the two MCs are up for awards at the Grammys. DaBaby’s song “BOP” was also nominated for best rap performance, but lost out to Megan Thee Stallion and Beyoncé's “Savage (Remix).”

Waiting in the wings was Dua Lipa, who will perform her remix of “Levitating” with DaBaby later in the night.

During a pre-taped interview, DaBaby shouted out his daughters as “the reason why I’m here, they give me that extra motivation.”

“To be nominated for record of the year is amazing,” he said. “Now all we gotta do is bring one home.”

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Megan Thee Stallion first female rapper to win best new artist Grammy since 1999

Megan Thee Stallion
(Victoria Will / Invision / AP)

Megan Thee Stallion has been named best new artist at the 2021 Grammy Awards.

Megan is the first female hip-hop artist to win the category in 22 years, since Lauryn Hill received the honor in 1999. Megan beat out best new artist contenders Phoebe Bridgers, Doja Cat, Chika, Kaytranada, D Smoke, Ingrid Andress and Noah Cyrus.

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Here’s how Trevor Noah opened the 2021 Grammy Awards

Trevor Noah posing in a tuxedo next to a golden Grammy trophy
“The Daily Show” host and comedian Trevor Noah will emcee the Grammy Awards.
(Michael Schwartz / CBS)

In true “Daily Show” fashion, comedian Trevor Noah kicked off the 63rd Grammy Awards on Sunday with plenty of witty commentary on politics, the COVID-19 pandemic and of course, the night’s nominees.

“I’ll be your host tonight as we celebrate the last 10 years of music that got us through the last 10 years of coronavirus. I know it’s been one year, but it feels like 10,” Noah quipped from an open-air tent outside Staples Center in Los Angeles.

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Harry Styles brings a sexy, soulful ‘Watermelon Sugar’ to the Grammy Awards

Harry Styles at the Forum in 2019.
Harry Styles at the Forum in 2019.
(Helene Pambrun)

Harry Styles opened the 63rd Grammy Awards on Sunday night in low-key but sexy fashion with a sultry take on his hit “Watermelon Sugar.”

Wearing matching black-leather trousers and a jacket — but no shirt to conceal his sinewy frame — the former boy-band heartthrob led a crafty live band, which included Blood Orange’s Devonte Hynes on bass, through the disco-kissed pop jam from his “Fine Line” album.

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Billie Eilish launched 2021 Grammys with haunting rendition of ‘Everything I Wanted’

A woman with green and black hair raising a hand to her face with long black nails
Billie Eilish at the 2020 Oscars.
(ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Billie Eilish and brother Finneas performed their 2019 single, “Everything I Wanted,” during the 2021 Grammys telecast.

Dressed in a loose, glittery silver suit and a headpiece draped with gems, Eilish performed the electronica number from atop a sinking Dodge Challenger — a nod to her self-directed 2020 music video. Earlier in the day, Billie Eilish received the Grammy for song for visual media.

Eilish cleaned up at the 2020 Grammys, where she won five Grammys, including all four of the Big Four categories: song of the year, album of the year, record of the year, and best new artist. “She won so many Grammys last year that her Uber home was a U-Haul,” joked Trevor Noah during his introduction.

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Grammy winner Fiona Apple explains her reasons for skipping this year’s show

Fiona Apple staring into the camera
Fiona Apple in a 2020 handout shot from her label, Epic Records
(Epic Records)

Despite scoring three nominations (and two wins already), singer-songwriter Fiona Apple will not be present at the 2021 Grammy Awards.

On Twitter, the musician explained her decision Sunday not to join her fellow nominees, who were given the option to attend this year’s ceremony in person amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Apple is nominated for rock performance (“Shameika”), rock song (“Shameika”) and alternative music album (“Fetch the Bolt Cutters”).

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Megan Thee Stallion and Beyoncé win best rap performance with ‘Savage’

 Megan Thee Stallion
Megan Thee Stallion
(Rich Fury/Getty Images for the Recording Academy)

Add “tearfully overjoyed” to the list of the many moods Megan Thee Stallion describes experiencing in her smash “Savage,” which won the Grammy for best rap performance on Sunday in its remixed form with Beyoncé.

Appearing remotely to accept the prize — one of four Grammys she’s nominated for this year — the Houston rapper wept a little as she thanked her grandmother (“for not making me stop music to finish school”) and her late mother (“for pushing me and knowing that I was gonna be here”).

After taking off on TikTok thanks in part to its highly adaptable chorus — “Classy, bougie, ratchet / Sassy, moody, nasty” — “Savage” hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 last year, several months before the release of Megan’s debut studio album, “Good News.” Later Sunday, “Savage” will compete for the coveted record of the year award.

For Beyoncé, who earlier Sunday won best music video with “Brown Skin Girl,” the rap performance trophy brings her all-time Grammy count to 26 — just one shy of the awards’ all-time female leader, Alison Krauss, who has 27.

“I still can’t even believe this. Me?” Megan said in her speech Sunday before wrapping up her thank-yous with a shout-out to Houston and to the fans she calls her Hotties.

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John Prine’s ‘I Remember Everything’ wins two posthumous Grammy Awards

John Prine.
(Danny Clinch)

John Prine has earned two posthumous Grammy Awards for his song “I Remember Everything.” The legendary singer and songwriter, who died April 7 of COVID-19, won in the American roots performance and American roots song categories for his bittersweet love letter to life.

An emotional Fiona Whelan Prine, his wife of more than 30 years, accepted the award from her home in Nashville. Surrounded by her family, she thanked Prine’s fans and longtime team for their devotion.

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For L.A. bass god Thundercat, a solo Grammy at last

Thundercat
(Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)

The latest LP from longtime L.A. funk-fusion bassist Thundercat was tinged with loss. “It Is What It Is” spoke directly to the death of his close friend Mac Miller, and the album came out right as the world went into quarantine for COVID-19.

But Grammy voters saw the craft and heart of that record and just awarded it for progressive R&B album.

Although Thundercat previously won a Grammy for his work with Kendrick Lamar, this is his first as a solo artist. Flying Lotus, his friend and career-long collaborator, executive produced the LP. (Flying Lotus is up for producer of the year, non-classical.)

“This year had been like ‘The Walking Dead,’ where you really see people’s true natures and who is actually still there for you,” Thundercat told The Times in a recent interview. “But the Grammys does feel like a light at end of a tunnel.”

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Fiona Apple wins two Grammys, explains decision to avoid the telecast

Fiona Apple
(Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)

Fiona Apple has won the Grammys for alternative album and rock performance.

Named best alternative album, “Fetch the Bolt Cutters” beat out Beck, Tame Impala, Brittany Howard and Phoebe Bridgers. This became Apple’s first Grammy win since 1998, when her single “Criminal” received the honors for female rock vocal performance.

The “Fetch the Bolt Cutters” single “Shameika” later received the honor for rock performance.

Apple took to Instagram on Sunday to explain why she declined to attend the virtual Grammys ceremony.

“It’s not because I’m trying to protest, even though I have problems with the Grammys,” she said. “It’s not because of that I’m not going. It’s just really because I don’t want to be on national television. I’m just not made for that kind of stuff anymore. I want to stay sober and I can’t do that sober. It doesn’t feel safe to me, to be in that kind of exposure, scrutiny, comparison to people.”

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An overjoyed Burna Boy finally gets his Grammy

Burna Boy performs at the Wiltern Theater in Los Angeles.
Burna Boy
(Luis Sinco)

There was absolutely no grumbling about the Grammys this time when the Nigerian superstar Burna Boy gave his his acceptance speech.

The overjoyed singer accepted his first Grammy, for global music album, with a round of jubilant cheers for the global African diaspora. Burna Boy pulled in the award for his LP “Twice as Tall,” his fifth LP and one notable for its pan-Africanist solidarity.

Burna had been previously nominated for world music album in 2020 for “African Giant” and admitted to being profoundly let down by the loss on “Level Up,” the new LP’s opener: “I remember when I couldn’t level up / ‘Cause the Grammys had me feeling sick as f— / Asking questions like, “Why it wasn’t us?”

This time, the Grammys put him over the top, and he looked thrilled to be there.

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Kanye West wins best contemporary Christian music album for ‘Jesus Is King’

Kanye West
(Associated Press)

Rapper, entrepreneur, Christian and avowed Grammy Awards critic Kanye West won his 22nd-ever Grammy Award on Sunday afternoon for “Jesus Is King,” his first gospel album. West was not available via video to accept his trophy; Premiere Ceremony host Jhené Aiko accepted it on his behalf.

West won over artists Cody Carnes, Hillsong Young & Free, We the Kingdom and Tauren Wells.

Despite being nominated 70 times, West has never won an award in any of the four major Grammy categories. His criticism of the Recording Academy in 2015 foretold the recent anger over the Weeknd’s snubbing this year.

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Blue Ivy Carter wins first Grammy Award

Jay-Z, Blue Ivy and Beyoncé sit at the 60th Grammy Awards.
(Christopher Polk / Getty Images)

Blue Ivy Carter, daughter of Beyoncé and Jay-Z, has won her very first Grammy Award.

The 9-year-old was featured in Beyoncé's “Brown Skin Girl,” which was named best music video at the 2021 Grammy Awards. A rich blend of R&B and Afrobeat, “Brown Skin Girl” also features verses by American Guyanese MC Saint Jhn and Nigerian singer Wizkid. The song was initially released in the original motion picture soundtrack for the 2019 film “The Lion King: The Gift,” then adapted into an excerpt from Beyoncé's 2020 film, “Black Is King.”

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Canadian producer Kaytranada wins Grammys for dance recording and dance/electronic album

Canadian dance producer Kaytranada opened the 63rd Grammy Awards Premiere Ceremony on Sunday afternoon with two consecutive wins.

The acclaimed producer, best known for tracks including “You’re the One” and “Chances,” won in the dance recording category for “10%,” his collaboration with singer-producer Kali Uchis; and dance/electronic album for “Bubba.”

Kaytranada had just accepted his first trophy when, less than a minute later, he learned he’d won for “Bubba.” During the prime-time telecast, he’ll also compete for best new artist against musicians including Phoebe Bridgers, D Smoke, Chika and Megan Thee Stallion.

The first two awards came after an all-star band featuring musicians Kamasi Washington, Bebel Gilberto, Gustavo Santaolalla, Anoushka Shankar, John Beasley, Mariachi Sol de Mexico and others opened the show by performing Marvin Gaye’s “Mercy, Mercy Me (The Ecology).”

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73 awards will be given out at the Premiere Ceremony, starting at noon

Jhené Aiko, seated and wearing a jumpsuit, poses for a portrait.
Jhené Aiko.
(Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

L.A.'s own Jhené Aiko will host the Grammys’ Premiere Ceremony starting at noon.

The R&B star will preside over the pre-telecast ceremony where 73 awards will be handed out, including such top honors as pop/duo group performance, rap performance, rap album, rock performance, country song, spoken word album and producer of the year, non-classical.

It’s possible that, by the end of the ceremony, Beyoncé — who has won 24 Grammys over her illustrious career — will tie or break the record for most Grammys won by a female artist, currently held by Alison Krauss with 27.

You can watch the Premiere Ceremony at the Grammys website.

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Flea on competing with Meryl Streep (!) for the spoken-word Grammy Award

Flea poses for a photo in swim trunks, seated on a rock.
Flea.
(Peter Staley)

Here’s Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea on his nomination for spoken word album, finding the muse for his memoir and his lifelong devotion to music.

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ICYMI, here’s some Grammy reading to bring you up to speed

Taylor Swift in a cream-colored turtleneck on her "Folklore" album.
Taylor Swift.
(Beth Garrabrant)

* Awards show are dying. COVID made things worse. Enter the 2021 Grammys!

* Our experts on who will win, who should win and why the best new artist award may be cursed.

* How NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert became a golden ticket to the Grammys.

* Taylor Swift and the Grammys: It’s complicated.

* For metal nominees Power Trip, the Grammys are a bittersweet coda.

* A local jazz polymath could be tonight’s big winner.

* Multiple nominee Dua Lipa is still a bit of a mystery.

* L.A.'s Thundercat and Flying Lotus have big Grammy hopes.

* Megan Thee Stallion has had herself a year.

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A Grammys unlike any other

Taylor Swift
(Beth Garrabrant)

If it feels like the songs and albums nominated for this year’s 63rd Grammy Awards came out a lifetime ago, well, that’s because they pretty much did.

Take Megan Thee Stallion‘s “Savage” featuring Beyoncé, nominated for record of the year, rap performance and rap song. The original, Bey-less version of “Savage” was released on March 6, 2020. On that day, Elizabeth Warren suspended her presidential campaign. The Lakers defeated the Milwaukee Bucks at a packed Staples Center. George Floyd was working security at a Minneapolis nightclub. And L.A. County confirmed two additional cases of the coronavirus, bringing the total to 13.

In November, when Grammy nominations were announced, our lives had already been irrevocably altered by the COVID-19 pandemic and by the protests for racial justice that followed Floyd’s death. Some of the nominated music reflected those cataclysmic events, such as Taylor Swift’s quarantine album “Folklore” and Beyoncé's driving Juneteenth single, “Black Parade.”

Still, Grammys gonna Grammy, and amid a solid slate of nominees, the Recording Academy inexplicably snubbed the Weeknd, whose “Blinding Lights” was the only song in 2020 that absolutely everyone liked. And so what should have been a cycle of relative calm — maybe even mixed with some back slaps — for interim Recording Academy Chief Executive Harvey Mason Jr. instead turned into a firestorm of accusations against the Grammys, with the Weeknd branding them “corrupt” and artists as well as the music industry railing against the so-called secret committees that wield backroom power over the nominations.

And then, of course, more turmoil: The show, originally scheduled for L.A. on Jan. 31, had to be moved to March 14 after COVID cases surged in California and around the U.S.

Sunday’s broadcast will not have a live audience, will not have many (if any) live performances and will not be held at Staples Center. It will, though, feature performances from Taylor Swift, Megan Thee Stallion, Bad Bunny, Harry Styles, Billie Eilish, BTS, Dua Lipa and the new Silk Sonic duo of Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak; tightly contested races for top awards among Beyoncé (nine nominations), Swift (six) and Lipa (six); and tributes to the club workers and live-music professionals whose lives and livelihoods have been ravaged by the pandemic.

But don’t expect to see a “Savage” hot-girl summit with Beyoncé and Megan. The Recording Academy announced that Beyoncé has declined to appear on the broadcast. Grammys gonna Grammy.

Here’s how to watch tonight’s Grammy Awards.

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