The 63rd Annual Grammy Awards kicked off on Sunday with host Trevor Noah trolling the British royal family seconds into his opening monologue, just one week after Meghan Markle and Prince Harry‘s tell-all interview with Oprah Winfrey.
While discussing the COVID-19 protocols in place for the show, Noah, 37, stood on a stage outside of the Staples Center in Los Angeles, showing that he will be hosting the show in front of an “open elegant air tent” with socially distanced tables where some stars of the night will be sitting.
In a show he promises will be “different” due to the unprecedented coronavirus pandemic, Noah said music’s biggest night will “bring us all together as only music can.”
“The white stuff going up people’s noses is cotton swabs,” Noah cracked. “Right now there’s more tension in that tent than at the family reunion at Buckingham Palace.”
The Recording Academy tapped Trevor Noah as host of Sundayy’s 63rd annual Grammy Awards.
Noah also promised the awards show will be the “biggest” outdoor entertainment night of the year “besides the storm of the Capitol.”
The show then opened with British singer Harry Styles performing “Watermelon Sugar” and following him was 18-year-old chart topper Billie Eilish who performed her hit, “Everything I Wanted.”
Up next was musical trio Haim, who is nominated for album of the year, with their first-ever Grammys performance.
Rapper Megan Thee Stallion took home best new artist, the first award of the night. Presented to her by Lizzo, Megan assumed the outdoor stage in shock. She thanked God “for putting life into my body for me to be able to even be here today.” She then honored her late mother.
“I really want to say thank you to my mama. I know she’s with me here in spirit. She always knew I could do this,” the female rapper said. “Thank you so much.”
Megan Thee Stallion won the first award of the night, best new artist.
(Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for The Recording Academy)
Dua Lipa performing at the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards.
(Francis Specker/CBS ©2021 CBS Broadcasting, Inc.)
Miranda Lambert took home the award for best country album for “Wild Card.” She was helped up on stage for her acceptance speech by her husband, Brendan McLoughlin.
Taylor Swift put on an elaborate performance featuring a medley including songs “Cardigan, “August,” and “Willow.” The singer wore a long-sleeved metallic dress on the stage, which was transformed into a forest, fitting for the theme of her “Folklore” and “Evermore” albums.
The Recording Academy announced in November that it had tapped Noah as host of music’s biggest night. Sunday marks the comedian’s first time hosting the awards show.
Prior to the telecast, the Grammy Premiere Ceremony was streamed via Grammy.com, where a majority of the 83 awards were handed out. Beyoncé, this year’s leading contender with nine nominations, won two honors during the pre-ceremony including best rap performance for “Savage” with Megan Thee Stallion and best music video for “Brown Skin Girl.” She shares the latter with daughter Blue Ivy Carter, who is also having a historic night: At 9 years old, she’s the second youngest to win a Grammy.
Beyoncé, this year’s leading contender with nine nominations, won two honors during the pre-ceremony including best rap performance for ‘Savage’ with Megan Thee Stallion and best music video for ‘Brown Skin Girl.’ She shares the latter with daughter Blue Ivy Carter. At 9 years old, she’s the second youngest to win a Grammy.
Queen Bey nabbed nominations for record of the year, song of the year and best R&B performance for her hit single, “Black Parade,” along with a slew of others.
Swift, Dua Lipa and Roddy Ricch all follow up with six nominations. Former Alabama Shakes vocalist Brittany Howard earned five nominations — while Justin Bieber, DaBaby, Phoebe Bridgers, Billie Eilish, Megan Thee Stallion, John Beasley and David Frost follow up with four.
The album of the year nominees are: Jhene Aiko’s “Chilombo,” Black Pumas’ self-titled album, Coldplay’s “Everyday Life,” Jacob Collier’s “Djesse Vol. 3,” Haim’s “Women in Music Pt. III,” Dua Lipa’s “Future Nostalgia,” Post Malone’s “Hollywood’s Bleeding” and Taylor Swift’s “Folklore.”
The song of the year nominees are: Beyoncé’s “Black Parade,” Roddy Ricch’s “The Box,” Taylor Swift’s “Cardigan,” Post Malone’s “Circles,” Dua Lipa’s “Don’t Start Now,” Billie Eilish’s “Everything I Wanted,” H.E.R.’s “I Can’t Breathe” and JP Saxe’s “If the World was Ending” featuring Julia Michaels.
The record of the year nominees are: Beyoncé’s “Black Parade,” Black Pumas’ “Colors,” DaBaby and Roddy Ricch’s “Rockstar,” Doja Cat’s “Say So,” Billie Eilish’s “Everything I Wanted,” Dua Lipa’s “Don’t Start Now,” Post Malone’s “Circles” and Megan Thee Stallion and Beyonce’s “Savage.”
Though it may look a little different as the pandemic continues, it’s still set to be a night full of celebration and gold for all of music’s elite. Other performers will include John Mayer, Mickey Guyton, Megan Thee Stallion, Post Malone, Black Pumas, Miranda Lambert, Cardi B, Billie Eilish, Brittany Howard, Lil Baby, Brandi Carlile, Maren Morris, BTS, Chris Martin, and Doja Cat.
Maren Morris attends the 63rd Annual GRAMMY Awards at Los Angeles Convention Center in Los Angeles, Calif.
(Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for The Recording Academy)
This year’s Grammys are notable for the fact that, for the first time in Grammy history, every nominee for best country album and best rock performance is a woman or is a group that is fronted by a woman.
Viewers can catch the show live on CBS at 8 p.m. EST/5 p.m. PST.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.