2020 Grammy Awards Highlights


Billie Eilish, as singer songwriter, arrives at the 62nd annual Grammy Awards at the Staples Center, Los Angeles. Photo by Voice of America.

Grace Potter

Billie Eilish, as singer songwriter, arrives at the 62nd annual Grammy Awards at the Staples Center, Los Angeles. Photo by Voice of America.
Billie Eilish, as singer songwriter, arrives at the 62nd annual Grammy Awards at the Staples Center, Los Angeles. Photo by Voice of America.

This year’s Grammy Awards were highly anticipated by music and pop culture lovers around the world. The show was full of surprises and performances that left only some viewers satisfied. However, no one can deny that the 62nd annual Grammy Awards left a mark on pop culture.

After the usual pre-show red carpet, the Grammys began with nominee and pop singer Lizzo taking the stage, accompanied by her famous flute. She dedicated her performance of “Cuz I Love You” to the late Kobe Bryant. It was an emotional opening to the show, especially so soon after Bryant’s tragic death. Alicia Keys and Boys II Men also dedicated their performance to Bryant.

Both Tyler, the Creator and Lil Nas X represented LGBTQ+ people of color with their performances. From his 2019 album “IGOR,” Tyler performed “EARFQUAKE” and “NEW MAGIC WAND.” Both Charlie Wilson and Boys II Men joined him on stage, along with a group of backup dancers all in matching IGOR costumes. Tyler took home the award for Best Rap Album, fulfilling the 2010 tweet in which he stated, “I’m going to get a grammy[sic]. Watch.” (@tylerthecreator.)

Lil Nas X, in a bright pink Versace cowboy suit, took the stage with his hit “Old Town Road.” The performance featured Billy Ray Cyrus and K-pop band BTS. He then went right into a performance of “Rodeo.” Nominated for a total of six awards, Lil Nas X won Best Music Video and Best Pop Duo/Group Performance, both for “Old Town Road.”

Nominee Ariana Grande also took to the stage halfway through the show with a mashup of “imagine,” “My Favorite Things,” “7 Rings” and “thank u, next.” Her vocals, choreography and pink backdrops elevated the performance.

One of the most talked-about moments was Billie Eilish taking home five out of the six awards she had been nominated for. Eilish replaced Taylor Swift as the youngest solo artist to win Album of the Year. People on social media felt that Eilish did not deserve these awards, although she was extremely humble when accepting them. After her third award, she outright said that she did not deserve it and that it should have gone to fellow nominee Grande.

Eilish also performed “when the party’s over”11 with her brother, Finneas O’Connell. The two showed how well they worked together, with O’Connell on piano and backup vocals as she sang.

Spanish singer Rosalía performed as well, gracing the stage with “Juro Que” and “Malamente.” She was nominated for Best New Artist and Best Latin Rock, Urban, or Alternative Album, and took home the second award for her 2018 album “El Mal Querer.” The singer has gained a lot of popularity and recognition over the past year and was ecstatic to win this award for her hard work.

Ever since Demi Lovato announced her return to the Grammys on Instagram, Lovatics were excited for her performance and the debut of her new single “Anyone.” Fans know how much passion Lovato can bring to the stage, and this emotional performance was no exception. Viewers could tell how important the song was to Lovato after she got slightly choked up at the beginning of the song.

There were plenty of Grammy Awards listening parties at the University. “Personally, I think sweeps are very boring for award shows, and that was still the case this year,” University sophomore Stephen Insalaco said. “If there was anyone to sweep, I’m happy it was Billie. she delivered such a strong debut album. I like seeing the new generation of artists who’ve been taking over music such as Billie, Lil Nas X and Rosalía earn their dues, but I was sad to see veterans Lana Del Rey, Ariana Grande and Taylor Swift be shut out.”

University sophomore Ty’ren Tillet said, “I was very happy with all of the performers who are responsible for influencing a new era in music. From Ariana’s beautifully arranged performance of ‘7 Rings’ to Lil Nas X’s larger than life performance of his two hit songs featuring many incredible guests. Lizzo opened the show by fueling us with all of the excitement we needed to continue with the rest of the event. I do believe Lana Del Rey should have won album of the year, but I’m not disappointed by Billie winning. All nominees were equally deserving of the awards in my mind, and this is the first time I have ever thought this!”

Whether it entertained or disappointed, the action-packed night was certainly one for lovers of music to remember.