Adele, tributes to Houston dominate Grammys

2012-02-13 09:12

Last year may have been Lady Gaga’s year but this year she walked away empty-handed as Adele took it all.

The singer won every single Grammy she was nominated for, and one for her Rolling in the Deep producer Paul Epworth.

Expectations were that the death of Whitney Houston on the eve of the 54th Grammy Awards, held at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, would dampen the mood, but it was very much a celebration of the singer’s work.

Said Kirk Franklin at the awards pre-show: “Whitney was very special singer who loved singing traditional gospel. I have many memories of her singing in Atlanta where she’s from. Right now, I’m just trying to find a way to be ok with it.”

The awards ceremony was started with a prayer by its host, LL Cool J, who dedicated it to the singer.

A few tears were shed when Grammy and Oscar winner Jennifer Hudson took to the stage to sing Houston’s version of I Will Always Love You.

Kanye West and the Foo Fighters led the wins from the pre-awards show.

West, who was not present at the event, won for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration and Best Rap Song for All of the Lights and the Best Rap Album and Best Rap Performance for Otis alongside Jay Z. The two were later surpassed by singer Adele who finished off with six awards.

The line-up of performers on the night included Bruce Springsteen, singing We Take Care of Our Own, Bruno Mars and Chris Brown who lit up the stage with his dance moves.

The Beach Boys gave a tribute performance, alongside Foster The People and Maroon 5. The band is celebrating their 50th anniversary but this was their first performance at the awards show.

Another veteran on stage was former Beatles member Sir Paul McCartney, who performed My Valentine after being introduced by Stevie Wonder.

But Adele’s performance was the most anticipated of the night.
She received a standing ovation when she took to the stage for the first time in six months since undergoing throat surgery. After being introduced by actress Gwyneth Paltrow, Adele performed hit track Rolling in the Deep, which won her a Best Song of the Year award earlier on the night.

This was the singer’s third win after winning Best Pop Vocal Album and Best Short Form Music Video award for Rolling in the Deep.

One of the coveted awards of the night, the Best New Artist Grammy was won by Bon Iver who beat favourites Nicki Minaj and J. Cole.

Towards the middle of the show, things wound down for the “in memoriam” during which the president of The Recording Academy, Neil Portnow, paid tribute to artists who had passed away, including Houston, Amy Winehouse, Heavy D, Nate Dogg, Nick Ashford, Dobie Gray and Etta James.

“There’s a whole in the heart of music,” members of Grammy-wining group Lady Antebellum said about Winehouse’s death.

Earlier, Bonnie Raitt and Alicia Keys performed their “favourite Etta James song”, A Sunday Kind of Love, while The Roots drummer Questlove gave a special mention to Soul Train’s co-founder, Don Cornelius.

Things heated up fast when Chris Brown came back to the stage with David Guetta, Lil Wayne, Foo Fighters and deadmau5 to perform some dance track that had a few celebs getting up to dance.

Adele proved that she’s a true phenomenon when she walked away with two of the awards’ biggest categories, Record of the Year and Album of the Year.

In her acceptance speech, the singer quipped that the album was born out of a “rubbish relationship”.

Paul McCartney showed he can still rock with the best of them by closing down the show with a lively performance of his hits Golden Slumbers, Carry that Weight and The End.

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