By The Associated Press
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Follow along for real-time, on-the-carpet and behind-the-scenes updates on the 2023 Grammy Awards from The Associated Press. Live updates — any times Pacific — are brought to you by AP journalists at the show in Los Angeles and around the country.
Host Trevor Noah said he’d be floating around the room all night: “Think of me as a Chinese spy balloon.”
Some of his selected jokes:
On Bad Bunny: “That album is so fly it makes Trump want to learn Spanish.”
On Beyoncé: “Beyoncé is nominated for her album Renaissance, which is better than anything from the actual Renaissance in my opinion, which was just pictures of grapes and stuff.
On Harry Styles: “Women throw their panties at this man, then he puts them on and looks better than they do.”
On Lizzo: “The most famous flute player in the world since … I’m sure there were others.”
On Taylor Swift: “The only music we listened to more than Taylor Swift’s last year was the hold music for Southwest Airlines.”
Trevor Noah opened the Grammy Awards standing outside Crypto.Com Arena, celebrating the show’s return to its traditional Los Angeles home for the first time since 2020.
“The best city in the world if you ignore a few other cities,” Noah said.
He then introduced a show-opening performance from Bad Bunny, who started out alone on a platform before the aisles were flood with dancers, some in multicolored skirts, some in giant masks.
After the performance, Noah — returning for a third straight year — opened his monologue amid the audience.
“Every year, I notice that I develop a different rapport with the people in the room,” he told AP’s Jonathan Landrum Jr. last week. “That opens you up to a few more jokes and a few more conversations in a way where people understand the context of who you are in relation to them. It means you get to have a little bit of fun without anybody feeling like you’re dunking on them.”
Catch AP’s live show from the red carpet? Read this story by co-host Gary Gerard Hamilton on what’s behind the trend of R&B music becoming more explicit than ever.
Fashion lover Harry Styles walked the carpet in a rainbow harlequin pattern jumpsuit adorned with Swarovski crystals. His low-cut, multicolored Egonlab look drew cheers. Egonlab is a young brand out of Paris.
It isn’t just on television where awards show producers are tough with the music that not-so-subtly tells a winner to wrap things up and get off the stage.
It was a big part of the pre-telecast streamed online, too. After all, there were around 80 Grammys to give out in only three hours.
So it no doubt made for some bruised feelings. If artists didn’t take the hint and wrap things up, an offscreen announcer might even move directly into the next award. And in a big theater, sometimes winners had a long walk to the stage.
Which brings us to the unfortunate Molly Tuttle and her band, the Golden Highway, winner of a Grammy for best bluegrass album. She didn’t even make it up to the stage in time to pick up the trophy. Producers were on to the next award. Even though she got there late, she was out of luck.
The Grammys added five new categories to this year’s awards slate: songwriter of the year, non-classical; best spoken word poetry album; alternative music performance; Americana performance and score soundtrack for video games and other interactive media.
Tobias Jesso Jr. won the first non-classical songwriter of the year award. The new category recognizes one individual who was the “most prolific” non-performing and non-producing songwriter for a body of new work during an eligibility year.
The songwriter’s category takes a different approach than song of the year, which awards the songwriters who wrote the lyrics or melodies to one song.
“To the songwriting community, this is a big win,” said Jesso Jr., who has worked with a number of major artists including Adele, Harry Styles and FKA Twigs.
Bonnie Raitt has won a dozen Grammys spanning more than three decades and a lifetime achievement award.
But she had never won as a songwriter until Sunday.
She won best Americana Roots song for writing “Just Like That.” It was her second straight Grammy win, after also winning best Americana performance, and she had to return to the stage moments after leaving it.
“It’s been so long, hi!” she said. “Thank you so much for honoring my own songwriting.”
“Just Like That” is also nominated for song of the year, to be given away later tonight.
“Let it be known, this is for the poets y’all.”
— J. Ivy, thrusting his Grammy for best spoken word poetry album into the air.
The Chicago wordsmith shouted out his high school English teacher 30 years after she singled him out in class.
Ivy’s teacher, Paula Argue, assigned him to write a poem and read it aloud in class at Rich Central High in suburban Chicago. As a shy kid, he was nervous.
“I received a standing ovation that day and I decided to keep going,” Ivy said. “Somebody saw me and gave me a chance.”
Shania Twain isn’t up for a Grammy. She’s not presenting. That, she says, freed her to have fun with fashion. Twain’s hair was red and her Harris Reed wide-belled pantsuit was adorned with huge black polka dots against white. She topped it off with a high, matching wide-brim hat.
“Here I am with all my new fun things to wear,” she says.
Reed is a young British designer she wanted to support. Her goal: “I just wanted to add some pop and cheer.”
THEY SAID IT
“I’m probably going to drink.”
— Carly Pearce, on how she’s going to celebrate her first Grammy. She and Ashley McBryde won for best country duo/group performance for “Never Wanted to Be That Girl.”
50 YEARS OF HIP-HOP
The Grammys marking the 50th anniversary of hip-hop brought out icons like Grandmaster Flash, a pioneer in DJing, who said he was “like a happy granddad.”
“It’s been 50 years. … I can remember when this was just recreation, going to the park, taking our makeshift sound systems in a supermarket cart, going to your nearest park, plugging in and just doing block parties and here we are now,” he said. “It’s unarguably the biggest music on planet Earth.”
“We’re here with our pockets empty, but our hands aren’t!”
— Sir the Baptist, accepting the award for best roots gospel album on behalf of the Tennessee State University Marching Band for “The Urban Hymnal.” Baptist used his acceptance speech to highlight how underfunded historically Black colleges and universities like Tennessee state are, saying he had to “put my last dime in order to get us across the line.”
The nomination alone marked the first time a college marching band had been nominated in the category, especially significant given the role marching bands play in HBCUs’ identities and culture as AP’s Travis Loller explained last month. With the win, Tennessee State’s “Aristocrat of Bands” beat out the likes of Willie Nelson.
Kendrick Lamar can’t be beat for best rap performance.
He extended his record in the category with a sixth career trophy for “The Heart Part 5.”
The 35-year-old rapper from nearby Compton put even more distance between himself and Kanye West and Jay-Z, who are tied with two wins apiece.
Lamar also was honored for his writing with a Grammy for best rap song for “The Heart Part 5.” He shared it with three co-writers.
THEY SAID IT
“It’s rock ‘n’ roll, man.”
— Brandi Carlile, after jogging onstage to accept the trophy for best rock performance for “Broken Horses.” Carlile was the only woman nominated this year in a category long dominated by men.
She wasn’t gone from the stage for long. She soon returned to collect the Grammy for best rock song, a writer’s award. She co-wrote “Broken Horses” with twin brothers Phil and Tim Hanseroth.
“Oh my god, this is amazing,” Carlisle shouted. “Oh, I’ll never be the same.”
On the heels of announcing the end of his touring days, Ozzy Osbourne has won two Grammys.
“Degradation Rules” by Ozzy Osbourne featuring Tony Iommi won the best metal performance and his album “Patient Number 9” won best rock album. Osbourne’s 2020 album “Ordinary Man” was well received and his 2022 album “Patient Number 9” came into the Grammys with four nominations. The one with Iommi reunited him with his Black Sabbath bandmate. Osbourne did not attend.
“I just EGOT!”
— Viola Davis, picking up her Grammy Award for spoken word album. Davis has an Emmy for “How to Get Away With Murder,” an Oscar for “Fences,” a Tony for both “King Hedley II” and “Fences” and now a Grammy for her audiobook performance of her memoir “Finding Me.”
Bebe Rexha’s sizzling hot pink halter gown is Moschino. It twists and turns from the neck to the floor. And like Doja Cat, she accessorized with long matching gloves.
Eric Schilling could not accept his Grammy Award because he had to work. At the Grammys.
No, he’s not tending bar, but the mixing engineer is recording and mixing the Grammys show.
He won for best immersive album for “Divine Tides.”
“Hi Eric! If you can see us on the screen, We won!” said Herbert Waltl, who won the award along with Schilling, Ricky Kej and Police drummer Stewart Copeland.
All eyes are on Beyoncé, who has the chance tonight to take the mantle as the artist with the most Grammy Awards. She’s on her way, winning her first Grammy on what could be a historic day and night.
She took her 29th career trophy for best dance electronic recording early in the Premiere Ceremony. The win puts Beyoncé in second place for most Grammys ever, breaking a tie with legendary producer Quincy Jones.
If she wins three more before the day is over, she’ll be the biggest Grammy winner of all time. She’s nominated for eight more.
Doja Cat heated up the Grammys red carpet in skin-tight, shiny Versace. She capped off her shiny look with long black gloves and cropped black hair.
“Assassins Creed: Valhalla” has won the first Grammy Award ever handed out for a video game score soundtrack.
Composer Stephanie Economou accepted the award, which was a newly created category this year. She thanked all the people who fought to get the category created.
“Thank you for acknowledging and validating the power of game music,” she said.
She beat out composers who worked “Aliens: Fireteam Elite,” “Call of Duty: Vanguard,” “Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy” and “Old World.”
“Encanto” took home the first two Grammys of the night. The 2021 Disney film won the best compilation soundtrack for visual media and the best score soundtrack awards. The soundtrack included last year’s megahit “We Don’t Talk About Bruno.” Soundtrack writer Lin-Manuel Miranda was not in attendance, but thanked during both acceptance speeches.
RED CARPET ROLLOUT
The Grammys red carpet opens five hours before the show begins, but it doesn’t take nearly that long to walk through it. Let’s take a tour of it.
THEY SAID IT
“I just keep thinking back to when I was 16, when I was 20, what would it have been for me if I had seen the kind of visibility that there is now?”
— Anoushka Shankar, sitar player and Grammy nominee, on South Asian representation in the music industry. She was accompanied by sister and fellow nominee Norah Jones and added that one of best friends, actor Poorna Jagannathan from “Never Have I Ever,” helped her get dressed today.
So what can you expect from the Premiere Ceremony, which is now getting underway? Around 80 awards will be handed out during this pre-telecast event. Among the categories slated for this ceremony are best rap song; best alternative music album; and best audio book, narration and storytelling recording.
The Premiere Ceremony is hosted by Randy Rainbow, best known for his musical parodies. Presenters include poet Amanda Gorman, actor Myles Frost, jazz musician Arturo O’Farrill, singer Judy Collins and R&B star Babyface. Performers include jazz singer Samara Joy, sitar player Anoushka Shankar and Pakistani singer Arooj Aftab, Colombian singer Carlos Vives and singer Madison Cunningham.
The Premiere Ceremony is slated to start in just half an hour. Check out our guide on how to watch the pre-show offering and the main event.
The 2023 Grammy Awards show is upon us. With the notoriously long red carpet set to rollout in a matter of hours, it’s time to study up on our writers’ predictions for the evening.
Most of the awards will be handed out before the CBS telecast gets started, but we’ll keep you updated on the tallies from the Premiere Ceremony.
The AP will be hosting its own red carpet show, featuring a mix of fashion and interviews. It’ll be streamed on YouTube, Twitter and right here on apnews.com.
Follow AP’s coverage of the 2023 Grammys at https://apnews.com/hub/grammy-awards.
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