It’s a part of the Grammys ever year, but familiarity doesn’t make the void of all the lost musicians and and musical figures from the past year any less painful. This year, John Legend was tabbed to be the voice of the tribute and John, his piano and Cynthia Erivo did so with a lovely set of performances before the standard video tribute.
As always, the tribute extended to all realms of music, including more renown legends like Prince, Phife Dawg from A Tribe Called Quest, George Michael and Leonard Cohen as well as more niche names like Lee ‘Q’ O’Denat of WorldStarHipHop fame were all honored.
It was touching, and hit every note perfectly as each person was given ample space and recognition. Eventually, Legend and Erivo returned for a final send-off, ending the always-sad moment on a high note. In a year that featured so many big names lost from various genres and spaces within music, it was quite the task for John and Cynthia but they were up to it. The show wasn’t about them, and they never made it so, instead quietly paying homage to those lost and giving the stage and the moment to them.