The stars were out and about in Hollywood this weekend for the 53rd Annual GRAMMY Awards. Music’s biggest night kicked off on Friday night with an exclusive pre-GRAMMY party hosted by five-time nominee, Cee-Lo Green at Live! On Sunset. Faith Evans, Fonzworth Bentley, Omarion and Big Boi enjoyed fiercely fashioned live mannequins, mac and cheese and customized cocktails and enjoyed a secret show from Cee-Lo, who told us he was “beyond honored” to be nominated five times and said “I’m enjoying every moment of this.”
Cash Money Records hosted a top-notch pre-GRAMMY soiree on Saturday night with a custom-built bank vault display and impressive ambiance. The gold carpet shined bright with stars like Nicki Minaj, Drake, Lil Wayne, Mario and Reggie Busha among others. The Cash Money family took the stage to present Nicki with her platinum plaque to commemorate her debut album, Pink Friday selling 1 million copies. Wayne announced the beauty, who gave a heartfelt thanks to Baby, Slim and the rest of her crew, and shout out to all the “bad ass bitches getting’ money.” She told the crowd that “this man found me on some steps rapping on a DVD in Queens, New York and now look. This shit is real.”
The highlight of the evening came when Wayne hit the stage alongside Jay Sean, DJ Khaled and Busta Rhymes to perform a medley of Young Money hits to a thunderous crowd into the wee hours of the morning. While some party-goers split to hit The Roots concert at The Music Box Theatre, others, called it a night to prep for the next day’s festivities.
GRAMMY night featured thirty performances, and was over-the-top fashion frenzy, with Nicki Minaj donning a leopard-print Givenchy ensembleand spotted hair. Lady Gaga arrived on the carpet in an enormous egg, and spending the night with pointed prosthetic shoulders and horns on her forehead. The freaky futuristic imagery lasted throughout the night culminating in her graphic performance of “Born This Way”.
Best new artist nominee, Justin Bieber gave an acoustic rendition of his hit, “Baby”, then was joined by his mentor, Usher for a rendition of his hit, “ Oh My God”. Janelle Monae joined Bruno Mars and B.O.B. for a fifties-inspired segment complete with doo-wop back-up singers, bow ties and black and white effects. Drake and Rihanna gave a sizzling performance of “What’s My Name”, with the sexy siren wearing a beaded bathing suit and grinding on her rumored former beau, and “Best New Artist” nominee.
The biggest moment of the night came from ten-time nominee,Eminem, who performed a remixed version of his hit “Love The Way You Lie” with Rihanna clad in a gorgeous gown beside him. Then, as Skylar Gray belted out the hook to “I Need a Doctor” through a misty darkness, Eminem delivered a dramatic punch when he spit a stirring tribute to his friend and mentor, Dr Dre, begging him back to the mic for his long-awaited return. And finally, Dre took the stage, commanding gasps from the crowd at his massive stature. His huge, built up figure, (much taller than I remember too) made his triumphant return after a ten-year hiatus, delivering his verse from the second single of the now DEFINITELY coming out project, Detox.
While Eminem nabbed two of his ten nominations, including “Best Rap Album”, the night’s big winners were Lady Antebellum, who scored five statues and Lady Gaga who nabbed two. Big surprises came in the “Best New Artist” category, when jazz singer, Esperanza Spalding beat out Drake, Justin Bieber and Florence and the Machine; and again when Arcade Fire won “Album of The Year”over Katy Perry, Gaga and Eminem.
Check out the full list of GRAMMY winners here.