Megan Thee Stallion was the first artist honored at the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards on Sunday night as she took home Best New Artist.
Megan fought back tears as she said: ‘I don’t want to cry. But first of all I want to say everybody is amazing. Every artist that was nominated for this award is so amazing. So shout out to all y’all.
Simply stunning: Megan Thee Stallion was the first artist honored at the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards on Sunday night as she took home Best New Artist
Big win: The 26-year-old rapper got emotional as she was given the award by her friend Lizzo at the event in a tent outside the Los Angeles Convention Center on Sunday night
‘Secondly, I really just want to thank god because thank you for putting life into my body for me to be able to even be here today. I want to say thank you for always being with me, being by my side.’
At one point during the speech, the outdoor elements next to a busy LA street came into effect as Megan seemed annoyed when traffic noise had interrupted her speech.
Regardless, she persisted through as she made sure to thank her beloved mother, Holly Thomas, who passed away from a brain tumor in March 2019.
She concluded her speech by saying: ‘I really want to say thank you to my mama, she’s not here with me today but I know she is here with me in spirit and she always believe I could do it, so thank you all so much.’
She faced heavy competition in the category including: Ingrid Andress, Phoebe Bridgers, Chika, Noah Cyrus, D Smoke, Doja Cat, and Kaytranada.
The show is taking place at the Los Angeles Convention Center which offers plenty of space indoors and outdoors for the socially-distanced telecast as winners were announced in an open air tent outside.
Extensive precautions were made amid the COVID-19 pandemic after the event, normally held at LA’s famed Staples Center, was delayed from its original date of January 31 and pandemic protocols had to be put in place.
Harry Styles was the first musical performer of the night as he donned a leather suit with no shirt underneath for a stripped down version of his hit Watermelon Sugar.
Shortly after Billie Eilish – who had a record-breaking night at last year’s Grammys – was joined by her brother FINNEAS for an emotional performance of hit Everything I Wanted.
Then Haim hit the stage as the three Los Angeles native sisters performed a rousing rendition of their hit The Steps.
Hunk: Harry Styles was the first musical performer of the night as he donned a leather suit with no shirt underneath for a stripped down version of his hit Watermelon Sugar
Emotional: Harry seemed to have a blast during the performance
Dripping in jewels: Billie seemed very much in her element
Host Trevor Noah opened up the show by explaining the safety precautions while giving a tour of the gala grounds which included an open air tent and venue inside for musical performances.
Of the safety protocols, Grammys executive producer Ben Wilson told Variety on Monday, March 8: ‘The performers and nominees are each other’s audience, so it’s a room of incredible musicians, all safely distanced from each other, and every 45 minutes a new four groups come in and the [previous] four go out.’
Harry Styles, Bad Bunny, Post Malone, Megan Thee Stallion and Dua Lipa are among those who will be hitting the stage at the star-studded event as some of the performances were actually prerecorded.
Co-executive producer Raj Kapoor told Variety: ‘One of our mandates was that [performers] have to come to us and be part of our team and film in L.A.
‘We’re not interested in doing a show that is disconnected. There’s a physical presence to it, of people performing live for the camera and being in a single location. Other shows may have used music videos and virtual reality and stuff, but ours is actually based in Los Angeles, where we usually celebrate the Grammys.
‘It may be done in a different way, but it definitely feels like people are coming together to make this show.’
Other performers include Chris Martin, John Mayer, Doja Cat, Maren Morris, DaBaby, HAIM, Lil Baby, Brandi Carlile, Roddy Ricch, Brittany Howard, Miranda Lambert, Mickey Guyton and Black Pumas.
Daily Show host Trevor Noah is hosting the event for the first time.
Beyonce leads all nominees as she is up for nine awards on the night.
The 39-year-old singer picked up song and record of the year bids with Black Parade, which she released on Juneteenth, the holiday that commemorates when the last enslaved African Americans learned they were free.
The song, which reached the Top 40 on the pop charts, is also nominated for best R&B song and best R&B performance.
Beyonce’s Black Is King film that highlighted Black art, music, history and fashion is up for best music film while Brown Skin Girl, a song dedicated to dark- and brown-skinned women, is nominated for best music video.
The singer also earned three nominations for her slick guest appearance on Megan Thee Stallion´s No. 1 hit Savage, including record of the year, best rap performance and best rap song.
A winner of 24 Grammys, Beyonce becomes the second-most nominated act in the history of the awards show with 79 nominations as she is currently tied with Paul McCartney.
Beyonce is only behind her husband Jay-Z and Quincy Jones, who have both earned 80 nominations each.
Multiple nominations went to Taylor Swift, Dua Lipa and Roddy Ricch, who each earned six nominations and followed the Lemonade hitmaker as the second-most nominated acts.
Megan Thee Stallion, who released her highly anticipated debut album last week after finding success with hit singles and mixtapes since 2018, scored four nominations including best new artist.
Another musician who is competing with Megan in the best new artist category is Phoebe Bridgers who also has four nominations including in the best alternative music album category for Punisher.
K-pop kings BTS earned their first-ever Grammy nomination after years of having success on the pop charts. They will compete for best pop duo/group performance with their No. 1 hit, Dynamite.
Other first-time nominees include the Strokes, Megan Thee Stallion, Michael Kiwanuka, Jay Electronica and Harry Styles, who became the first One Direction member to earn a Grammy nomination.
Several acts earned posthumous nominations, including John Prine (best American Roots performance, best American Roots song), Nipsey Hussle (best rap performance), Leonard Cohen (best folk album) Pop Smoke (best rap performance) and songwriter LaShawn Daniels (best gospel performance/song).
There was some controversy regarding nominations as The Weeknd earned zero nominations despite having multiple hits this year including Blinding Lights which has remained on the Billboard Top 10 for a full year.
The 31-year-old Canadian crooner expressed displeasure withe the lack of recognition when nominations were announced back in November.
‘The Grammys remain corrupt,’ the singer said on Twitter at the time. ‘You owe me, my fans and the industry transparency.’
Songs and albums released between Sept. 1, 2019 and Aug. 31, 2020 were eligible for nominations this year