By: Sasha Stringer
Just hours after the death of basketball legend Kobe Bryant, the 62nd annual Grammy Awards were held in Los Angeles, California.
Taking place at the Staples Center, aka Bryant’s home court, those in attendance felt the full force of Bryant’s death. Alicia Keys, Host of Grammy’s Telecast, opened the night by speaking a few words of the tragedy.
“We’re all feeling crazy sadness right now, standing here in the house that Kobe Bryant built. We never imagined in a million years we would have to start the show like this,” Keys said.
Moments of silence and contemplation like this one were common throughout the night. From Tanya Tucker’s “Bring My Flowers Now,’’ to DJ Khaled and John Legend’s “Higher’’, the conscious anticipation of death was palpable throughout the Staples Center.
The Jonas Brothers broke the somber mood with their unreleased song, “Five More Minutes,” a lustful tune about a.m. lovemaking. Next, pop sensation Ariana Grande performed her two top songs of 2019, “7 Rings,’’ and “Thank U, Next.’’ The Jonas Brothers and Grande’s performances provided a welcome relief from the otherwise serious mood.
18 year-old Billie Eilish left the Staples Center full handed, literally. The genre-defying, home-schooled California girl had all the attention. Becoming the second artist in Grammy history to win all four of the Big Four Categories since 1981, Eilish claimed
Best New Artist, Album of the Year, Song of the Year, and Record of the Year.
Lizzo was heartbroken and having a blast, at the same time. Her two songs, “Cuz I Love You” and “Truth Hurts” and her speech honoring Bryant, made her appearance well-rounded during the chaos of the night.
Despite unexpected events, the ceremony continued to live up to its reputation and enjoyable for the 18.7 million viewers who tuned in.