2019 is the year of the “shake-up,” as award ceremonies have departed from traditional hosting formats. The Oscars stumbled into another bout of drama when they decided to forgo having a show host this year, but the Grammy’s took a turn possibly for the better when they decided not to have a comedian host this year’s event (James Corden MC’d the past two years).
Cardi B’s Sensual Performance (and Hidden Tribute)
From the moment a badass woman sat at a diamond-encrusted piano playing the major chords to “Money,” we knew Cardi’s performance would be lit. The 20s-inspired set (and her costume, which looked like a homage to the iconic Josephine Baker) was juxtaposed against rows of dancers decked in shimmering black body suits rolling their way through a more sensual version of the hit record.
“Welcome to the Grammy’s,” Cardi interjected her own performance 30-seconds in, with a keen awareness that she truly was the moment we’d all been waiting for.
Meanwhile, her on-again husband was low-key all of us as he got VERY into her performance.
— theGrio.com (@theGrio) February 11, 2019
Diana Ross’ Tribute to Herself — and Her #HairGoals Grandson
Picture this iconic moment: In his perfect velvet maroon blazer, Diana Ross’ grandson (and hair twin) graced the stage with palpable frustration towards the announcer as he came out to introduce his grandmother. “Did she say ‘little guy?’ I’m four foot nine!” Once the frustration passed, he made sure to give his grandmother a warm welcome, saying, “Please welcome my grandmommy, Diana Ross.”
— E! News (@enews) February 11, 2019
Ms. Ross herself, a vision in head-to-toe red, then thrilled the audience while her family looked adoringly on. Everyone from Jaden Smith to A.Rod and Nipsey Hustle — and of course, Diana’s daughter Tracee — sang along and swayed back and forth to “Reach Out And Touch” while Diana shouted, “Happy Birthday to Me!”
J.Lo’s Multiple Motown Costumes
There’s no denying that J.Lo had all the fun when she gave us multiple looks and moments in Motown history despite the controversy. She opened up the medley of Motown’s greatest hits with a Diana Ross-inspired look before she quickly stripped down to a onesie to sing renditions of The Jackson 5’s biggest hits. In a fast-moving tribute, she was soon joined by Smokey Robinson for an adorable “My Girl” duet, before performing “Square Biz” in a pink, floor-length feathered vest.
She finished out the lightning-quick performance with an acrobatic salsa performance while Ne-yo played the piano she shimmed on top of and A-Rod looked on in adoration.
— The Golf Chill (@thegolfchill) February 11, 2019
Cardi B Again… And Her Adorable Acceptance Speech
The queen of all realness humbly accepted the award for Best Rap Album (as she made history as the first woman to win the award) at the end of the night while choking back tears, thanking all of the executives at Atlantic Records, and showing real love to her daughter and husband. While she stumbled through the speech due to nerves, she started by admitting, “maybe I should start smoking weed,” as an icebreaker.
Cardi’s win felt like a continued victory her standout two years producing and performing her debut album, Invasion of Privacy.