(Feb. 15, 2016)– Meghan Trainor won best new artist at the 58th Annual Grammy Awards on Monday night and reacted with joyful tears.
“I have to think L.A. Reid for looking at me like an artist instead of just a songwriter,” the “All About That Bass” singer said, audibly sobbing.
Ed Sheeran won song of the year for his song “Thinking Out Loud.”
The honor, a songwriter’s award, seemed to catch Sheeran off guard.
“My parents come every year and every time I lose,” he said.
Not this year.
Sheeran and co-writer Amy Wadge beat some tough competition in the category, one of the ceremony’s big prizes along with record of the year and album of the year. He beat both Taylor Swift and Kendrick Lamar, who are considered the top competitors at Monday’s night’s show.
Lamar won the first award of the night: best rap album for “To Pimp a Butterfly.”
He’d won four in the pre-show honors, for rap performance, rap song, rap/sung collaboration and music video.
The latter was only a partial honor for Lamar. The song was Swift’s “Bad Blood,” on which Lamar was a featured performer.
Swift, who opened the show with her song “Out of the Woods,” earned seven nominations, including nominations in the top three categories: song, record and album of the year.
She’s still up against Lamar in the album of the year category. Also doing well: The Weeknd, whose seven nominations include nods for record and album of the year.
‘Hello’ to Adele and Richie
LL Cool J, the host of the 58th Annual Grammy Awards, took care of the obvious joke immediately, introducing “Hello” singer Adele from the audience and then suggesting Lionel Richie — also the singer of a song called “Hello” — tell Adele, well, you know.
In the pre-show honors (with 83 Grammy categories, most awards are given out before the broadcast), Swift won two trophies, for best pop vocal album and best music video.
The Weeknd also had a pair of Grammys in the early going: R&B performance for “Earned It (Fifty Shades of Grey)” and urban contemporary album for “Beauty Behind the Madness”. “Beauty” is also up for album of the year.
Other winners included the other album of the year nominees, Alabama Shakes (for alternative music album and best rock song) and Chris Stapleton (for country solo performance), as well as former President Jimmy Carter (for the audiobook of his memoir, “A Full Life: Reflections at Ninety”), Mark Ronson feat. Bruno Mars (for pop duo/group performance) and Ed Sheeran (pop solo performance).
Stapleton’s “Traveller” won best country album and Alabama Shakes’ “Don’t Wanna Fight” won best rock performance.
Tributes in song
But the Grammys are as much — if not more — about performances as they are about awards. Much of the action tonight has been in the form of tributes.
Richie received a tribute from Luke Bryan, Meagan Trainor, John Legend, Demi Lovato and Tyrese, performing a medley of his songs. Richie is the MusiCares Person of the Year.
Three recently deceased artists got very different treatments.
Lady Gaga paid homage to David Bowie, playing snippets of some of Bowie’s greatest hits, including “Space Oddity,” “Changes,” “Ziggy Stardust,” “Suffragette City,” “Rebel Rebel,” “Fashion,” “Fame,” “Let’s Dance” and “Heroes.” She was joined by guitarist and producer Nile Rodgers on the last two.
Eagles Don Henley, Joe Walsh, Timothy B. Schmit and Bernie Leadon saluted Glenn Frey with a performance of “Take It Easy,” joined by that song’s co-writer, Jackson Browne.
Bowie and Frey died in January.
Stevie Wonder and Pentatonix honored the late Maurice White of Earth, Wind & Fire with an acapella version of “That’s the Way of the World.” The band’s surviving members are to present the award for album of the year.
White died February 4. The Grammys announced that Earth, Wind & Fire will receive one of its Lifetime Achievement Awards at a separate ceremony in the spring.
The cast of the Broadway hit “Hamilton” performed the musical’s opening number live from New York, and not long after was rewarded with a Grammy for best musical theater album.
Composer Lin-Manuel Miranda rapped his thank-you speech.
Kanye West, who released his new album, “The Life of Pablo,” on Saturday, isn’t scheduled to perform, but he’s been raising eyebrows for days with his tweets. The Grammys themselves responded puckishly to one of them in which West stated he wouldn’t be coming unless he’s promised album of the year.
For that, he’ll have to wait.
On the other hand, he and Swift do have a history, so be ready for an uninvited guest if Swift accepts any awards on the broadcast.
The 58th annual Grammy Awards was hosted by LL Cool J.