LOS ANGELES (AP) – The 2020 Grammy Awards was filled with tributes to Los Angeles icons as the night honored and celebrated the lives and legacies of NBA legend Kobe Bryant and rapper Nipsey Hussle, who won his first Grammy posthumously Sunday.
The Grammys kicked off with a performance in honor of Bryant, who died hours before the awards began. The award show happened at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, where Bryant played for 20 years for the Los Angeles Lakers.
Before her performance of “Truth Hurts” and “Cuz I Love You,” Lizzo said, “This is for Kobe.” Host Alicia Keys said she was feeling “crazy sad” about Bryant. She called him a hero.
Hussle’s collaborators and friends, including DJ Khaled, John Legend, Meek Mill, Kirk Franklin, Roddy Ricch and YG, gave an all-star tribute to the man who died last year.
Billie Eilish won album of the year and record of the year to cap a dominant night of five victories at the Grammy Awards.
The 18-year-old Eilish won album of the year for “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?” and record of the year for “Bad Guy.” Her album beat a group of nominees that included Lana Del Rey, Lizzo and Ariana Grande.
“Can I just say that I think Ariana deserved this?” Eilish said as she accepted the award.
The edgy, avant-pop album that siblings Eilish and her brother, Finneas, created in a small bedroom in the musicians’ Los Angeles home won 11 honors for the musical family. It helped Eilish win the top four honors, including album, song and record of the year, along with best new artist.
The 18-year-old is the youngest artist to achieve the feat.
In her acceptance speech for song of the year, Eilish said, “I feel like I joke around a lot, but I genuinely want to say that I’m so grateful.”
She told the music stars in the crowd that “I grew up watching all of you.”
Finneas — who co-wrote, produced and engineered the album, walked away as Sunday’s top winner with six.
Lizzo won the Grammy for best pop solo performance for “Truth Hurts.” She had already won two Grammys before the telecast: best traditional R&B performance for “Jerome” and best urban contemporary album for “Cuz I Love You (Deluxe)."
“This whole week I’ve been lost in my problems, stressed out," Lizzo said as she accepted her third award. "Then in an instant all of that can go away.”
A mix of newcomers and well-known acts reached their goals of winning their first-ever Grammy Awards on Sunday, including Tanya Tucker, J. Cole, Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus.
Michelle Obama, Sara Bareilles, Rosalia and 21 Savage also became official Grammy winners when the show handed out trophies during its pre-telecast ceremony in Los Angeles.
Sean “Diddy” Combs called out the Grammy Awards for dissing rap and R&B stars in its major categories in a blazing speech that earned him a standing ovation from Beyoncé, Jay-Z and several other music industry players.
At the end of his 50-minute speech Saturday night at Clive Davis’ white-hot pre-Grammys gala where Combs was honored, the music mogul demanded a change and said he was happy to be involved in making a difference.
Davis’ annual gala was jam-packed with well-known guests, including Michael Douglas, Naomi Campbell, Cardi B, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Quincy Jones, Joni Mitchell and DJ Khaled.