From the second that Cardi stepped onto the stage to accept the award, she was a mess of nerves and tears. It took the steely calm smirk of Offset to help Cardi regain her composure as she worked to find the words to properly explain her feelings.
“Babe I can’t breathe,” she began, blinking back tears. “Oh, the nerves are so bad,” she said between gasps. “Maybe I need to start smoking weed.” The crowd erupted into laughter.
Of the laundry list of people that she went on to thank, her heartfelt mention of her daughter, Kulture, was the centerpiece of the moment, acknowledging her impending presence when she was pregnant as the catalyst of the inspiration to finish Invasion of Privacy. Cardi left the stage much calmer than before and content with her words.
Cardi was definitely out of breath from her mesmerizing and adventurous performance of “Money” earlier tonight. If she was on her way to regaining her energy following her musical number and acceptance speech, she might fall out again when she realizes that she’s the first female solo artist to win the Best Rap Album Grammy in history. Give this woman her crown already.
During the awards show on Sunday night (February 10), the 23-year-old was crowned Best New Artist, reigning supreme in a stacked category that also included H.E.R., Jorja Smith, Margo Price, Chloe x Halle, Luke Combs, Bebe Rexha, and Greta Van Fleet. After accepting the trophy from last year’s Best New Artist victor, Alessia Cara, Lipa fought back tears while thanking her fans, “who have allowed me to be the best version of myself.”
Lipa — who admitted she was “nervous and excited and grateful” to accept the honor — also acknowledged how cool it was to be nominated alongside so many stellar female artists. “I guess this year we’ve really stepped up,” she observed, referring to last year’s infamously ignorant “step up” comment about women in music.
The “New Rules” hitmaker ended her speech on a motivational note, preaching, “For anyone that hasn’t realized how special they are to have a different story, a different background, a name that honors their roots, because they just want to be normal, whatever the hell that means … never let that get in the way of you and your dreams because you deserve it. I’m proof that you can do whatever you put your mind to. I believe in you.”
Just minutes before accepting the award, Lipa shared the stage with St. Vincent, performing a medley of Vincent’s “MASSEDUCATION” and Lipa’s own “One Kiss.” The former shredded on guitar, the latter danced around seductively, and their matching haircuts were, naturally, on point.
Lipa’s other Grammy win — to which she had the cutest reaction ever — came during the pre-show, when her collaboration with Silk City (Diplo and Mark Ronson) won Best Dance Recording for “Electricity.” And thus, Lipa officially has a Grammy winning streak to her name!
Four years after being signed to Beyoncé’s record label, Chloe x Halle are getting the recognition they deserve, one perfect performance at a time. That trend continued during their tribute to soul singer Donny Hathaway at the 61st Grammy Awards, as the 20- and 18-year-old sisters proved their vocal chops singing “Where Is The Love.”
Chloe x Halle first gained viral fame from their viral covers on YouTube, including “Pretty Hurts” by Beyoncé, in which the sisters consistently hit precise, complicated harmonies. With the release of their Best Urban Contemporary Album-nominated debut album, The Kids Are Alright, Chloe x Halle haven’t stopped those harmonies.
The sisters caused a stir just a week ago at Super Bowl LIII, before which they performed “America the Beautiful” for tens of millions of viewers nationwide. “I’m so proud of Chloe and Halle,” Beyoncé wrote on her Instagram, sharing their performance.
Even more people learned Chloe x Halle’s names tonight, as the duo burst further into the mainstream with their rendition of “Where Is The Love” by Roberta Flack and Donny Hathaway, 40 years after Hathaway’s untimely death. The original recording won a Grammy for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals in 1973.
The duo didn’t miss a note – as per usual – and showed the audience why they also earned a nomination as this year’s Best New Artist, an award Dua Lipa won shortly after their performance.
“Thank you so much, Donny Hathaway,” the sisters said to end their tribute. “Your music lives on forever.”
The 2019 Grammys aired on Sunday night (February 10), and it was a high-energy show. Not only were the performances on-point—I’m still not over Cardi B’s, TBH—but there were some emotional, powerful speeches, not to mention so much epic red-carpet fashion.
Below, check out all the moments you need to know about from the 2019 Grammys:
Lady Gaga, Jada Pinkett Smith, Michelle Obama, Alicia Keys and Jennifer Lopez all graced the stage at the same time. They each talked about how the odds were stacked against them in their respective careers. It was such a badass moment.
Lady Gaga addressing mental health during one of her acceptance speeches. “I’m so proud to be a part of a movie that addresses mental health issues,” she said. “They’re so important. And a lot of artists deal with that, and we’ve got to take care of each other. So if you see somebody that’s hurting don’t look away. And if you’re hurting, even though it might be hard, try to find that bravery within yourself to dive deep and go tell somebody and take them up in your head with you.”
Camila Cabello, J. Balvin, Ricky Martin, and Dr. Arturo Sandoval’s opening performance. Their energetic renditions of “Havana” and “Mi Gente”kicked off the night perfectly.
Kacey Musgraves’ beautiful performance of “Rainbow.” It was simple and powerful. Musgraves’ Golden Hour album is one of the best records of 2018, full stop. Thank God it won the trophies for Best Country Album and Album of the Year.
Janelle Monáe serving production during her performance of “Make Me Feel.” In a sea of mostly acoustic performances, Monáe’s punchy set was a breath of fresh, pop-music air.
Jennifer Lopez’s instantly-iconic hat. It was large and in charge. Twitter couldn’t get enough of it.
Childish Gambino winning Song of the Year and Record of the Year for “This Is America.” So deserved. “This Is America” is arguably the most important piece of music to come out of 2018.
That star-studded Dolly Parton tribute. So many of your faves came out to tribute the Queen of Country, including Katy Perry, Miley Cyrus, and Kacey Musgraves. Parton herself also hit the stage to belt a few of her hits.
Ariana Grande just lounging around in her Grammys dress. She didn’t attend the show, but that didn’t stop her from wearing the custom Zac Posen gown she had prepped.
Cardi B’s performance of “Money.” This was, hands down, the best performance of the evening. Cardi brought out all the stops for this one: a flock of dancers, a piano player, and a show-stopping outfit. We are absolutely bopping and stanning.
Diana Ross’ performance. In celebration of her 75th birthday, Ross sang a medley of her greatest hits while wearing the most fabulous red dress.
Lady Gaga’s chills-inducing rendition of “Shallow.” She went full-on pop star for this performance, wearing a bedazzled jumpsuit and belting the award-winning tune like it was “Bad Romance.” I’m still recovering.
Jennifer Lopez’s tribute to Motown. Choreography! Outfit changes! Literal gymnastics! Someone please tell me why she hasn’t played halftime at the Super Bowl yet.
Cardi B winning Best Rap Album for Invasion of Privacy. She was truly taken aback in her speech, joking her nerves were so bad she’s considering smoking weed. This makes Cardi B the first solo woman to win Best Rap Album.
Dua Lipa winning Best New Artist. She gave one of the most heartfelt speeches of the night. “No matter where you’re from, or your background, or what you believe in, never let that get in the way of you and your dreams, because you deserve it,” she said.
Travis Scott is known for his explosive, utterly dynamic, and ambitious live performances. At the 2018 VMAs, he literally emerged from a massive golden head of his own image before setting the stage ablaze. And during his Astroworld live shows, he’s been known to recreate an entire theme park onstage, even going along for the ride. When he took the stage at the 2019 Grammys on Sunday night (February 10), it looked like he was actually taking things very slow this time — but that only lasted a moment.
Joined by James Blake and R&B singer Philip Bailey, the mood took a contemplative turn as the vocalists united for the downbeat “Stop Trying to Be God” and it looked like we were getting another side of Travis. Then, nearly just as quickly as we’d settled into that, the steel cage came down. And Travis found himself in the center.
The vibe shifted as soon as he launched into “No Bystanders,” and from the middle of the throng, Travis climbed the cage and jumped off of it — because this is Music’s Biggest Night™️, after all. This is the same man, by the way, who absolutely owned the Super Bowl halftime show just a week ago. What a time to be Travis Scott.
As supporters rushed the stage, surrounded him, and eventually carried him to a successful conclusion, it was clear: this night was meant as a cage match of Travis vs. the world. And he won.
ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images
Travis was nominated for three Grammys this year: Best Rap Performance and Best Rap Song for “Sicko Mode,” and Best Rap Album for Astroworld, which he could end up going home with before the night is over. If he doesn’t, we’ll always have that cage match. And the best leap from the top of a steel structure since Mick Foley in 1998.
Drake’s speech went in-depth on the politics of winning awards in the rap space. “We play in an opinion-based sport, not a factually based sport, so it’s not like the NBA where at the end of the year you are holding a trophy because you made the right decisions or won the game,” he said. He then went on a surprising tangent, decrying the importance of the awards. “You’ve already won if you have people who are singing your songs word for word, if you are a hero in your hometown, if there are people who have regular jobs coming out in the rain in the snow spending their hard-earned money to buy tickets to come to your shows, you don’t need this, I promise you – you’ve already won,” he said.
Drake’s win comes on the back of six other nominations this year. He would know a thing or two about both winning and being passed up on these awards; over the course of his entire career, he’s been nominated for 42 Grammys and only won three. If one of the highest-selling musicians of today gets passed over for accolades and still makes magic happen, maybe there are some nuggets of truth to his words tonight.
The songstress really lived up to the lyrics of her Golden Globe- and BAFTA-winning song from A Star Is Born, “Shallow,” during her performance at the 2019 Grammys on Sunday (February 10). Joined by her friend and frequent collaborator, Mark Ronson, Gaga pushed the Oscar-nominated pop-rock ballad off the deep end with a performance that was part performance art, part shimmering pop opera. There was drama! Rhinestones! Twirls! And a final, lingering stare into the camera.
To sum it up: It was the perfect reminder that Oscar voting opens Tuesday, February 12 — and Lady Gaga is up for not only Best Original Song — which she has in the bag at this point — but also Best Actress. And after the memorable performance she gave on-stage at the Grammys, how can she not be at the forefront of voters’ minds?
Gaga scored five Grammy nominations this year, four of them for “Shallow.” She’s already taken home three Grammys tonight — including Best Pop Solo Performance for “Joanne (Where Do You Think You’re Goin’?)” — so if the woman wants to writhe on-stage in glitter and platform heels, then she can, OK? She’s earned it.
Who is H.E.R.? That was a question on many people’s minds after the breakout R&B star received a windfall of Grammy nominations in December. Her performance at the awards show on Sunday night (February 10), though, answered it definitively: she’s a musical force to be reckoned with whose name you’re going to remember for a long, long time.
Taking center stage with a single spotlight on her, the 21-year-old rocked her signature dark shades and hit all the marks while singing “Hard Place.” Things kicked up a notch when she started shredding on a transparent electric guitar (she told MTV News on the red carpet that the instrument was designed especially for her by Fender) and as the stage lights brightened, a full band and a choir of singers emerged behind her. Oh, and BTS were totally feeling it, too.
Prior to her performance, H.E.R. was announced as the winner of Best R&B Performance for “Best Part,” her sweet duet with Daniel Caesar. She’s up for an additional four awards on Sunday: Album of the Year, Best New Artist, Best R&B Song for “Focus,” and Best R&B Album.
Surely, it’s a star-making night for H.E.R., and to hear her tell it, it’s practically serendipitous. The artist — who’s MTV’s Push: Artist to Watch for February — recently told us, “It feels like the possibilities are endless. It feels like, wow, I’m where I’m supposed to be. All my hard work is paying off. Everything I’ve dreamt about is here. My time is really now.”
Cardi B can really do it all. While sitting at the 61st Grammy Awards waiting to see if she’ll take home any trophies in the categories that she’s nominated in, she also brought the performance smackdown to the stage with her tour de force live rendition of “Money.” We can only imagine what it felt like live; we can feel fresh waves of adrenaline radiating from our television sets.
Lester Cohen/Getty Images for The Recording Academy
Cardi’s majestic performance of “Money” featured a flurry of women clad in black bodysuits while another pounded the piano as if her life depended on it. The rapper was the centerpiece and main attraction with her retro hairdo, demanding eyes be glued to her alluring figure and mesmerizing performance. The entire number felt like being in a jazz den in the 1940s, the viewer starring as a nameless detective who has been enchanted by a stunning femme fatale.
Cardi gracefully moved around the stage with her sensual moves and bouncing body parts, eventually becoming encased in a black flower. At this moment, the camera cut to Offset, her estranged husband, in the audience clearly feeling the performance, staring at Cardi on stage with his tongue out. That could mean a lot of things! Cardi exclaimed, “Welcome to the Grammys!” in her performance, and now it looks like the festivities can truly begin.
Cardi was nominated for not one, two, or three awards this year; she was up for five. This year, she could possibly still take home the trophies for Record of the Year (“I Like It“), Album of the Year (Invasion of Privacy), and Best Rap Album (Invasion of Privacy). It’s a major step up from last year when she received only two nominations for Best Rap Performance and Best Rap Song for her breakout single “Bodak Yellow.” And it feels right. The night’s still young, after all.
How many major musicians can fit on one stage to honor Dolly Parton at the Grammys? The answer – after watching the Dolly Parton tribute at the 61st Grammys Awards – is at least eight, with Miley Cyrus, Kacey Musgraves, Katy Perry, Maren Morris, Little Big Town and Linda Perry joining Dolly on stage.
Dolly’s tribute comes as part of her being honored MusiCares Person of the Year in the days leading up to the Grammys, a milestone moment for the country singer who’s racked up an astounding 47 nominations and nine wins, including this year’s latest honor. With a record that strong, it only makes sense that Dolly would perform a medley of her biggest hits with her best friends in the industry.
The tribute started with Kacey and Katy, the first in big diva hair and the second in small, trading verses of Dolly’s award-winning 1977 single “Here You Come Again” before Dolly herself joined the singers. Looking angelic in her all-white gown and rocking a white microphone, too, Dolly thanked Kacey and Katy for their part in her tribute, as if they weren’t thrilled enough to be there already!
“Where’s my Miley?” Dolly asked to begin the next portion, as goddaughter Miley came center stage for a rendition of Dolly’s timeless “Jolene” that was impossible not to sing along to. Blending their vocals, Miley kept the melody while Dolly dazzled on her harmonies – but the best harmonizing came right after.
Dolly and Molly remained on stage as Maren joined them for a three-part vocal performance of “After The Gold Rush.” And as perfect as the three singers sounded right off the bat, it wasn’t until they went a cappella that you could really appreciate their voices – and it became clear that this was a moment to remember.
Little Big Town, who explained in multiple red carpet interviews that they’ve been looking forward to a Dolly collaboration for years and years, joined the superstar to perform her new song “Red Shoes” from the Dumplin’ Original Motion Picture Soundtrack, executive produced by Dolly herself.
To close the tribute, Dolly kicked off “9 To 5,” her 1980 single from the movie of the same name, as each of the previous singers came back to the stage. And after Dolly gave her signature catchphrase – “Everybody!” – everyone sang together to close off a magical night for the country music singer. Songwriter Linda Perry accompanied on acoustic guitar, too, after the two collaborated on the Dumplin soundtrack.
With so many of today’s biggest artists on the stage together with Dolly, one can’t help but wonder: which of these talented singers will get their own tribute in 20 years?! Look out for the answer at the 81st Grammy Awards.