Big night at the Grammys for women and rap music 

Feb 11, 2019 | News

The 2019 Grammys made a push towards inclusivity, as Childish Gambino, and Kacey Musgraves won big. (Mike Blake/Reuters)

Kettelia Wright

Rapper Childish Gambino and country star Kacey Musgraves took home the most prestigious awards last night at the Grammys.

Both acts won a total of four awards. After making history for wining Song and Record of The Year, Gambino also won Best Music Video and Best Rap/Sung Performance for “This Is America”. Musgraves won Best Country Solo Performance for  “Butterflies”,  Best Country Album, and Best Country Song “Space Cowboy”.

Fifteen-time Grammy award winner and host of last night’s show, Alicia Keys, opened the show with a powerful message about the unifying power of music. She delivered the message alongside former First Lady Michelle Obama, Lady Gaga, Jennifer Lopez, and Jada Pinkett Smith.

“From the Motown records I wore out on the South Side to the ‘who run the world’ songs that fueled me through this last decade, music has always helped me tell my story, and I know that’s true for everybody here,” Michelle Obama referring to her early years in Chicago.

“Whether we like country or rap or rock, music helps us share ourselves, our dignity and sorrows, our hopes and joys. It allows us to hear one another, to invite each other in. Music shows us that all of it matters, every story within every voice, every note within every song. Is that right ladies?”

It was also a big night for female rapper Cardi B, making history for becoming the first solo female rapper to win best rap album for “Invasion of Privacy”. British singer Dua Lipa won Best New Artist and upon accepting her award she made reference to the Recording Academy’s President, Neil Portnow, comment from last year telling female performers they need to step up. “I just wanted to say how honored I am to be nominated alongside so many incredible female artists this year, because I guess this year we really stepped up,” Lipa said.

This was the first time in Grammy history that women won the top five album awards, with  Ariana Grande  and H.E.R adding to the list. Grande won Best Pop Album, and H.E.R walked away with Best R&B Album.

A number of artists teamed up last night to honor and pay tribute to Aretha Franklin, Dolly Parton, and Motown. Yolanda Adams, Fantasia and Andra Day paid tribute to the late Queen of Soul with a thrilling performance  of “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman”. Dolly Parton received a tribute from her goddaughter Miley Cyrus singing her classic “Jolene”. Latin singer-actress Jennifer Lopez performed a  mixture of Motown hits including “Dancing in the Street” and “Please Mr. Postman,”.

Not to be outdone, Canadian Rapper Drake added to the long history of controversy at the Grammy’s by delivering a speech aimed at the award show. The 6ix God was accepting his Grammy for Best Rap song when he began throwing shade at the academy.

“We play in an opinion-based sport, not a factual-based sport. You’ve already won if you have people who are singing your songs word for word, if you’re a hero in your hometown… Look, if there’s people who have regular jobs who are coming out in the rain, in the snow, spending money to buy tickets to your shows, you don’t need this right here.”