The Recording Academy held its 66th Grammy Awards show at the Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles on Sunday, bringing Hollywood’s most prominent musicians together for a full night of celebrations, thrilling performances and touching tributes.
“Tina Turner was always a towering figure,” Winfrey shared. “She is our forever goddess of rock ‘n’ roll, who inspired millions, a moving symbol of grace and grit, soul and power. Our love and respect for Tina grew as we witnessed her bravely reclaim her freedom.”
She continued: “From the moment I met Tina, first as a fan, then later blessed to become her friend, she was a special kind of role model … And as those big wheels of time keep on turning, Tina’s voice continues to speak to all of us.”
Winfrey introduced Fantasia Barrino as the next vocalist, and “The Color Purple” remake’s star delivered an outstanding, unforgettable musical performance honoring the late queen of rock ‘n’ roll.
Barrino captivated the audience immediately with her lively rendition of Tina Turner’s 1970 smash hit, “Proud Mary,” commanding the attention of the packed arena as she appeared onstage decorated in a beaming sequined and fringed ensemble, surrounded by dancers. Within seconds of her hitting her first dance break, the audience rose to their feet in awe of Barrino’s high-spirited onstage presence.
Her vivacious energy soon became contagious as attendees quickly found themselves singing along and mimicking the iconic “rolling on the river” dance moves. Joined by multi-instrumentalist Adam Blackstone, Barrino shined on- and off-stage, soon moving throughout the crowd, sharing a fun dance moment with Dua Lipa.
The energized audience remained standing and erupted into ongoing cheers, reiterating their stamp of approval with frequent, enthusiastic shouts of “Come on, Fantasia” as she belted out Turner’s timeless lyrics. Her uplifting spirit wowed viewers and made her breathtaking tribute a night to remember.
The night’s salutes to artists who passed away in 2023 continued with Jon Batiste and Annie Lennox, who also performed tributes to pay homage to other music makers.
After Lenny Kravitz shared his sentiments about late longtime music executive Clarence Avant, 2024 Grammy nominee Batiste — joined by Ann Nesby of Sounds of Blackness, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, plus a skilled choir — sang a medley of songs, and Lennox, backed by Wendy Melvoin and Lisa Coleman of Wendy & Lisa, rocked the Prince-penned song by The Family that late singer Sinéad O’Connor remade to perfection, “Nothing Compares 2 U.”
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