Daft Punk, Lorde, Bruno Mars, Kacey Musgraves and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis were just a few of the big winners during the 56th annual Grammy Awards telecast, hosted by LL Cool J and broadcast live from the Staples Center in Los Angeles. LL declared that "music has the power to bring us together like nothing else in this world" before he urged everyone to "make some beautiful noise!" Read on for the recap!
The Grammys are all about the music, with most awards handed out before the event. During the telecast, Daft Punk's Random Access Memories won Album of the Year, while the Robot Duo's Get Lucky featuring Pharrell Williams and Nile Rodgers nabbed Record of the Year and Best Pop Duo/Group Performance. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis were named Best New Artist; the 17-year-old Lorde landed Song of the Year and Best Pop Solo Performance for Royals; Unorthodox Jukebox by Bruno Mars was named Best Pop Vocal Album; and Best Country Album was awarded to a shocked Kacey Musgraves for her Same Trailer Different Park; Sir Paul McCartney & Dave Grohl's fun jam Cut Me Some Slack was awarded Best Rock Song; and Best Rap/Sung collaboration went to Holy Grail by Jay-Z featuring Justin Timberlake.
Looking like a scene from Flashdance, Beyonce opened the show on a high note with a killer rendition of Drunk in Love with hubby Jay-Z. Next up, Lorde showed off her vocal skills with Royals, and Hunter Hayes debuted his new song, Invisible. Katy Perry played with alchemy and emerged from a giant crystal ball to sing a Maleficent-inspired Dark Horse; Robin Thicke and the legendary Chicago teamed up for a medley of tunes that included Saturday in the Park, Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is? and Only the Beginning -- and then, of course, Blurred Lines -- minus a twerking Miley Cyrus. Keith Urban rocked Cop Car, while John Legend crooned All of Me and Taylor Swift swooned All Too Well in separate solo piano performances; and P!nk once again impressed by performing the energetic Try in mid-air, suspended above the cheering crowd with some wild aerobatics, then joined by Nate Ruess for Just Give Me a Reason.
It was also a night to honor The Beatles, who changed the face of music with their first live TV performance in America on The Ed Sullivan Show on February 9, 1964. The Grammy crowd rose to its feet to laud Ringo Starr as he took the stage to perform Photograph; later, Ringo joined Paul McCartney to play drums for Paul's Queenie Eye. Imagine Dragons and Kendrick Lamar teamed up to mashup an explosive Radioactive and m.A.A.d City, followed by country newcomer Kacey Musgrave's Follow Your Arrow. Then, it was old-school country's turn, with Kris Kristofferson and Willie Nelson singing Highwayman, and then Merle Haggard and Blake Shelton joining 'em for a round of Okie from Muskogee and Mama Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys (if there was chickenwire in front of the stage, the crowd would've thrown beer bottles with joy -- it's a The Blues Brothers reference). Every star got on their feet again to swing to the energetic Get Lucky when Daft Punk was joined by Nile Rodgers, Pharrell Williams and Stevie Wonder, who threw in a few nods to Chic's Freak Out and Stevie's Another Star; Carole King killed it with Sara Bareilles for a live mashup of Sara's Brave with Carole's Beautiful; Metallica was boosted by Grammy Cultural Ambassador to China, Lang Lang, for a rocking rendition of One; Macklemore and Ryan Lewis opened minds with Same Love featuring Mary Lambert, with Queen Latifah marrying gay couples onstage -- and then Madonna took the stage for a gospel version of her classic Open Your Heart; Miranda Lambert and Billy Joe Armstrong played a tribute to The Everly Brothers, singing When Will I Be Loved; and Nine Inch Nails, Queens of the Stone Age, Dave Grohl and Lindsey Buckingham united to close out the show.
Those remembered in memoriam included Van Clyborn, George Jones, Eydie Gorme, Annette Funicello, Ray Manzarek, George Duke, Chris Kelly, Jack Greene, Slim Whitman, Mindy McCready, JJ Cale, Jonathan Winters, Cory Monteith, Ray Dolby, Lou Reed and Phil Everly.