From J. Lo to Whitney Houston, Why the 2000 GRAMMYs Are as Memorable as Ever
By Stacy Lambe
As the music industry plans to hand out awards for the best of 2014, it’s hard not to reflect on the GRAMMYs ceremony that happened just 15 years prior. The year was 2000, but in actuality it was a reflection of 1999, when just about anything could happen. Jennifer Lopez launched her musical career, Britney Spears brought back the Catholic schoolgirl outfit, and TLC was suddenly a group again (and not just a TV channel). But the year was more than that. And the 42nd annual GRAMMY Awards attempted to capture that – for better or worst.
Let’s look back on all the glory of 2000 ceremony 15 years later.
Before she was J. Lo – or Jenny from the block – Lopez was just an actress-turned-singer. But you wouldn’t know it at the awards. When she walked out in the green Versace dress to present the first award of the evening with David Duchovny, the last thing on anyone’s mind was music. The dress is currently on display at The Grammy Museum.
2. Whitney’s Final Performance.
Unknown at the time, Whitney Houston’s performance of "It's Not Right But It's Okay" would be her last on the GRAMMY stage. The later singer was up for four awards following the success of her comeback album, My Love Is Your Love, and took home one for Best R&B Vocal Performance – Female for the same song she performed that evening.
3. The New Destiny’s Child.
Just eight days ahead of the GRAMMYs, Destiny’s Child shocked fans and the group’s members alike with the premiere of the music video for “Say My Name.” Out were two original members, LeToya Luckett and LaTavia Roberson, and in were two new singers, Michelle Williams and Farrah Franklin. The new lineup, which still featured Beyonce Knowles and Kelly Rowland, made its public debut at the GRAMMY Awards, even though fans were still catching up on the news that there had been a switch-a-roo. Of course, Beyonce has come a long way since those early days.
While he didn’t perform, Eminem made his presence at the awards known by taking home two awards, including Best Rap Solo Performance and Best Rap Album. He would go onto to when the latter four more times. (And he’s nominated again for The Marshall Mathers LP 2.)
5. Lenny’s Girl.
When Lenny Kravitz attended the GRAMMY Awards – he was nominated for Best Male Rock Vocal Performance for “American Woman” – he brought his 11-year-old daughter, Zoe, as his date. Today, Zoe is an actress in two action-packed franchises, X-Men and Divergent. And sort of embarrassed by her father’s recent Super Bowl performance with this year’s GRAMMY nominee, Katy Perry.
6. Backstreet’s Back.
The 2000 GRAMMYs was easily the year of pop with Backstreet Boys, Santana, and TLC nominated for Album of the Year. And for the boy band, it was a notable year with four nominations and two performances. Fifteen years into the millennium, the band went on hiatus, reunited with its full lineup, and became the stars of the documentary, Backstreet Boys: Show ‘Em What You’re Made Of, which chronicles their 2013 world tour.
7. Britney Vs. Christina.
Not since Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera went head-to-head at the GRAMMYs for Best New Artist has there ever been a fiercer showdown in that category. The two pop stars became big names less than a year prior, battling each other for the top spot on the pop charts. Though it was Aguilera, the second youngest ever winner, who came out on top. Now, both singers are well into their careers with Spears celebrating a nearly two-decade long career with a Vegas residency and Aguilera as the sometimes-judge of NBC’s music competition, The Voice.
After five years of their mega-successful album, CrazySexyCool, TLC pulled themselves out of bankruptcy and released their celebrated third album, FanMail, which was nominated for eight awards, including Album of the Year. While they ultimately only took home three awards, their return had been solidified. Sadly, tragedy struck when Lisa “Left Eye” Lopez died in a car accident leaving the group stalled without its third, pivotal member. Ultimately, Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins and Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas persevered. The group released 3D in 2002, produced a hit VH1 film about their story, and launched the most successful Kickstarter campaign in recent history. The group will release it’s crowd-funded final album as well as hit the road with New Kids on the Block in 2015.
9. No Taylor.
It’s hard to imagine, but there was a time when Taylor Swift was a permanent fixture of the GRAMMY Awards. During that year’s ceremony, the singer was just 10 years old. Though, just eight years later, she would be nominated for Best New Artist, and win Album of the Year in 2010. Since 2012, the singer has been nominated for at least three awards. (Other GRAMMY staples that didn’t exist then: Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, a solo Beyonce, and Pharrell Williams.)