Lizzo performs during the 62nd Annual GRAMMY Awards.
Lizzo performs during the 62nd Annual GRAMMY Awards.

Emotional Grammys tribute to Kobe

The Grammys have opened with an emotionally-charged tribute to the late Kobe Bryant, after his shock death today.

Following a performance by Lizzo, Grammys host Alicia Keys addressed the crowd at the Staples Center - the venue where Bryant played with NBA team, the Los Angeles Lakers.

Keys said she was "standing here heartbroken in the house that Kobe Bryant built", referring to the famous Los Angeles stadium.

She spoke of the basketballer's tragic death with her opening monologue and an acapella gospel performance with Boyz II Men.

"Here we are on music's biggest night celebrating the artists that do it best," Keys said.

 

Alicia Keys, centre, paid tribute to Kobe Bryant at the Grammys. Picture: Getty Images
Alicia Keys, centre, paid tribute to Kobe Bryant at the Grammys. Picture: Getty Images

 

Alicia Keys was visibly emotional as she discussed the NBA stars’s shock death. Picture: Invision
Alicia Keys was visibly emotional as she discussed the NBA stars’s shock death. Picture: Invision

 

"But to be honest, we are feeling crazy sadness right now because earlier today, Los Angeles, America and the whole wide world lost a hero.

"We are literally standing here heartbroken in the house that Kobe built.

"Right now, Kobe and his daughter Gianna and all of those people who have been tragically lost today are in our spirit, in our hearts, they are in our prayers, they are in this building.

"I would like to ask everybody to take a minute and hold them inside and share our strength and support with their families."

Lizzo opened the Grammys with an electric performance by dedicating it to Bryant.

"Tonight is for Kobe" before she poured her heart into a beautiful, medley culminating with her hit Truth Hurts and signature flute solo.

 

Lizzo at the Grammys. Picture: Getty Images
Lizzo at the Grammys. Picture: Getty Images

 

For Kobe! Picture: Getty Images
For Kobe! Picture: Getty Images

 

Fresh photos with the bomb lighting (to quote Lizzo). Picture: Getty Images
Fresh photos with the bomb lighting (to quote Lizzo). Picture: Getty Images

 

 

Truth hurts! Picture: Getty Images
Truth hurts! Picture: Getty Images

 

 

AUSSIE WINNERS

Australian Christian pop duo King and Country have won two Grammys during the pre-televised ceremony.

Brothers Joel and Luke Smallbone with country music legend Dolly Parton won Best Contemporary Christian Music Performance/Song for their hit God Only Knows.

The brothers also won Best Contemporary Christian Album for their record Burn The Ship.

The brothers thanked everyone for their donations and prayers for Australia during the bushfire crisis and asked for support to heal.

They also paid tribute to Parton.

"When we stepped in to write this song, we were all walking through really hard moments. As many of you writers know, when that happens you tend to put something on paper so you can reach out to people who are going through the same circumstances," Joel explained.

 

Joel David Smallbone and Luke Smallbone of King & Country. Picture: Getty Images
Joel David Smallbone and Luke Smallbone of King & Country. Picture: Getty Images

 

"To dear Dolly Parton, who is an incredible human being, it's one of the great moments of our career to collaborate with her and her team," he continued.

"I talked to her manager's sons in Sunday school, they were kind enough to reach out to her and play her the song. But she said something on a call, she said, 'I love this song because it's reaching to the marginalized, to the depressed, to the suicidal, which is all of us at some point."

"And then she said this, in her Dolly accent, 'I want to take this song from Dollywood to Hollywood to Bollywood,' and we did it."

Other early Grammy winners included frontrunner Lizzo, Billie Eilish and Lil Nas X.

Beyonce also picked an award for her Homecoming Movie and Michelle Obama for the audiobook of Becoming.

Full list of Grammys nominees and winners



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