Alicia Keys’ “Girl on Fire” won the prize for R&B album at the 56th Grammy Awards on Sunday.
A decade into a career that boasts more than 35 millions records sold and 14 Grammys, Keys said she was struggling to find herself. After marriage and motherhood, “Girl on Fire” showcased her newfound confidence.
“I think it’s mostly just stepping into your womanhood,” Keys told The Times in a 2012 interview about the album. "[‘Girl on Fire’] is really about finding your own passion, finding your own flow and standing in your own space. And just being fully and completely yourself.”
The album showed Keys at her most vulnerable -- and also at her most collaborative. She worked with Frank Ocean, Bruno Mars, Maxwell, Salaam Remi, Pop & Oak, Jamie xx, Emeli Sandé, Nicki Minaj and Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds.
“Girl on Fire” featured an impressive blend of Keys’ hallmark classical riffs and R&B-pop melodies with a fresh mix of genre-blending instrumentation. The album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart -- the fifth time she bowed at the top spot.
Keys was up against efforts from Faith Evans, John Legend, Chrisette Michele and TGT. Last year jazz pianist Robert Glasper’s genre-blending “Black Radio” took home the award.
The Grammys are determined by about 13,000 voting members. The eligibility period for nominated recordings was Oct. 1, 2012, to Sept. 30, 2013. The 56th awards are being held at the Staples Center and telecast on CBS. They are broadcast live except for viewers on the West Coast. The latest headlines and any breaking news will be posted here on Pop & Hiss.