Songs of Protest: Grammy Artists Air Their Feelings About President Trump and His Administration
From Paris Jackson to A Tribe Called Quest, the Grammys made their voices heard.
The Staples Center got political Sunday night as artists used The Grammys stage to speak out about President Trump and his administration.
It all began with Jennifer Lopez, who quoted a Toni Morrison poem as she told the crowd: "At this point in history our voices are needed more than ever."
Katy Perry wore an armband with “Persist” emblazoned on it, a reference to GOP Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell silencing Elizabeth Warren on the floor of the Senate last week when she read a letter from the late Coretta Scott King denouncing Jeff Sessions, Trump’s pick for attorney general.
Even Paris Jackson, the daughter of King of Pop Michael Jackson, got political, telling the crowd: "We could use this type of excitement at a pipeline protest."
But perhaps no one was more vocal than Busta Rhymes and A Tribe Called Quest during their performance of “Award Tour” and “We The People” with Grammy nominee Anderson .Paak.
"I just want to thank President Agent Orange for perpetuating all of the evil that you've bee perpetuating throughout the United States," Rhymes sarcastically said. "I want to thank President Agent Orange for your unsuccessful attempt at the Muslim ban."
Following the diatribe, A Tribe Called Quest broke through a makeshift wall, clearly poking fun at Trump’s proposed barrier around the U.S.-Mexico border.
Leader Q-Tip walked out with a woman in a hijab and people representing all different types of Americans such as black, Latino, gay, Muslim, Caucasian, walked on stage as the iconic New York hip-hop group performed.
Host James Corden told Inside Edition prior to the awards that he had hoped artists would get political.
“If someone on the show feels like they would like to do something, that's the beauty of living in this country where freedom of speech is encouraged and accepted,” he told Inside Edition.
The British entertainer is receiving praise for his hosting duties. He even incorporated his own parents, who were celebrating their 45th wedding anniversary, into the show.
He also did a take on his popular "Carpool Karaoke" segment on The Late Late Show with a cardboard car, and got some star-studded Grammy attendees to join him in singing Neil Diamond's classic "Sweet Caroline."
However, the gimmick fell flat as most of the stars he enlisted — including Lopez, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw — did not appear to know the words.
The Grammys were highlighted by a series of super charged performances.
Lady Gaga joined Metallica as they performed the San Francisco metal giants' new single, "Moth to the Flame." But an embarrassing technical difficulty arose as singer James Hetfield’s microphone did not work.
Gaga, fresh from her Super Bowl Halftime Show, did her best to improvise and share her mic with Hetfield. At one point, she jumped into the audience and crowd-surfed.
Following the song, a visibly upset Hetfield kicked the microphone stand and threw his guitar off stage in frustration.
Keith Urban performed with Carrie Underwood. Prior to the show, he told Inside Edition: "It’s gonna be a blast to get to perform with her tonight, really looking forward to it."
“Best New Artist” winner Chance the Rapper took the audience to Sunday church with his performance of “How Great” and “All We Got” with Kirk Franklin, Francis and the Lights, Tamela Mann, and a gospel choir.
One of the highlights of the show came near the end, as Bruno Mars paid tribute to Prince, and got everyone on their feet.
Donning the trademark suit that the legendary performer wore in Purple Rain, Mars performed “Let’s Go Crazy” and recreated the film’s famous opening.
Famed Minneapolis rock and soul band, The Time, who also appear in Purple Rain, opened the tribute. The Time had famous fans of the film, like Jay Z, doing the well-known dance from the movie in the aisles.
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