11 things you need to know about the 2018 Grammy Awards

11 things you need to know about the 2018 Grammy Awards
Copyright REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
Copyright REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
By Alice Cuddy
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From political performances to cute consolation prizes, find out our highlights from music's biggest night.


Some of the biggest names in music gathered on Sunday night in New York City’s Madison Square Garden for the 60th Annual Grammy Awards.

The event, held outside of Los Angeles for the first time in 15 years, was marked by music, politics and comedy.

From big wins and shock losses, to political statements and cute consolation prizes, here are 11 things you need to know about music’s biggest night.

1. Bruno Mars and Kendrick Lamar dominate awards

Bruno Mars was the big winner of the night, taking home all six awards he was nominated for, including the top prizes of album, record and song of the year for 24K Magic and That's What I Like.

Kendrick Lamar won five of the seven awards he was nominated for, including best rap album for Damn, and best music video, rap song and performance for Humble.

REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

2. Few female winners

Male artists dominated the prizes at this year’s Grammys, with Alessia Cara’s award for Best New Artist making her the only female to win one of the major categories, aside from Rihanna sharing Lamar's award for Best Rap/Sung Performance.

3. Jay-Z snubbed

Rapper Jay-Z, who had the most nominations of the night, with eight nods, did not win a single prize.

4. Stars wear white roses

Artists showed their support for the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements by wearing and carrying white roses.

Lady Gaga, Pink and Sam Smith were among the artists donning the flower to show “hope, peace, sympathy and resistance.”

REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

5. Opening performance makes political statement

Kendrick Lamar opened the awards ceremony with a medley of songs from his album Damn, with support from U2’s Bono and The Edge, and comedian Dave Chappelle.

His performance was backed by a giant American flag and dancers in hoodies who collapsed to the sound of gunshots as he rapped.

During the performance, Chapelle said: “I just wanted to remind the audience that the only thing more frightening than watching a black man be honest in America is being an honest black man in America.”

6. Kesha gives emotional #MeToo performance

Pop star Kesha gave an emotional performance of her single Praying, with support on stage from Cyndi Lauper, Camila Cabello, Andra Day, Julia Michaels and Bebe Rexha and the Resistance Revival Chorus.

The singer, who has been embroiled in a lawsuit with producer Dr Luke over allegations of verbal, physical and sexual abuse, dedicated the performance to the #MeToo movement.

“When i wrote praying, with ben abraham and ryan lewis, i just felt as if i had gotten a huge weight off of my shoulders,” Kesha tweeted on Saturday.

“It felt like an emotional raw victory for myself, one step closer to healing. I never could have known what would’ve happened these past few years.”

7. Janelle Monae says 'Time’s up'

Before introducing Kesha onto the stage, singer Janelle Monae delivered a powerful message to the music industry on behalf of the Time’s Up movement.

“We come in peace, but we mean business. And to those who would dare try and silence us, we offer you two words: Time's up,” she said.


“Let's work together, women and men, as a united music industry, committed to creating more safe work environments, equal pay and access for all women."

8. Hillary Clinton takes jab at Trump

Hillary Clinton made a surprise appearance for a comedy bit taking aim at US President Donald Trump.

The former presidential candidate, along with stars including Snoop Dogg, Cher, Cardi B and John Legend, read excerpts from Michael Wolff's book Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House.

The sketch saw Grammy host James Corden holding auditions for the book reading in hopes of winning next year's best spoken word album.

9. Joy Villa wears anti-abortion dress

American singer Joy Villa made an anti-abortion statement by wearing a customised white gown with the image of a fetus surrounded by a rainbow-coloured womb and a “Choose Life” handbag.


The 31-year-old, who wore a Trump-inspired “Make America Great Again” dress to last year’s ceremony, explained her outfit choice on Instagram.

“I believe in loving the child and the mother, and I am proudly #ProLife. There is so much pain out there, but I choose to spread love and hope,” she wrote.

10. Camila Cabello, U2 support immigrants

Singer Camila Cabello offered a tribute to those awaiting passage of the DREAM Act as she introduced a performance by Irish band U2.

“Tonight in this room full of music’s dreamers we remember that this country was built by dreamers for dreamers chasing the American dream. I’m here on this stage tonight because just like the Dreamers, my parents brought me to this country with nothing in their pockets but hope,” she said.

“I’m a proud Cuban-Mexican immigrant born in Eastern Havana. Standing in front of you on the Grammy stage in New York City and all I know is just like dreams, these kids can’t be forgotten and are worth fighting for.”


The speech led onto a pre-recorded performance from U2 on a barge near the Statue of Liberty.

Taking to Twitter, the band shared a photo of the performance with the caption: “Blessed are the Shithole Countries, for they gave us the American Dream”

11. Consolation puppies

Comedians Jerry Seinfeld, Jim Gaffigan and Sarah Silverman were given puppies to cuddle after they lost out on Best Comedy Album to Dave Chappelle.

“I don’t want anyone to be upset tonight, so the good news is nobody goes home empty-handed because all night we will be handing out consolation puppies,” host James Corden joked. 

But while the comedians were seen cooing over the puppies, not everyone was happy, with animal NGO PETA tweeting: “Very disappointed that the #GRAMMYs chose to gift puppies as a joke. Animals are not toys. #AdoptDontBuy.”

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