LL Cool J, Busta Rhymes, and more icons celebrate 50 years of hip-hop in lit tribute at the Grammys
The Grammy Awards brought together some 33 artists to rock mics and rock the bells to celebrate 50 years of hip-hop and it did not disappoint. Well, except it did leave us wanting so much more.
In what must have been a logistical nightmare to pull together, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, Run-DMC, LL Cool J, Salt-N-Pepa, Rakim, Public Enemy, Ice-T, Queen Latifah, Method Man, Busta Rhymes, Missy Elliott, Nelly, Too $hort, Big Boi, the LOX, and others got the audience to their feet to such classics as the Furious Five's "The Message," P.E.'s "Fight the Power," Bus-a-bus' "Put Your Hands Where My Eyes Could See," and Nelly's "Hot in Herre."
Kevin Winter/Getty Images
It's a nigh impossible task to cram a half-century of bangers into a 10-minute tribute, but the Grammy producers sure did their damndest, careening non-stop from one act to another. The result was a thrilling performance that felt like a much-needed shot of adrenaline to the always over-long broadcast.
Mic. Drop. #GRAMMYs pic.twitter.com/CaKl8vIBkG
— Recording Academy / GRAMMYs (@RecordingAcad) February 6, 2023
And for all the rap icons who couldn't be there, their names were displayed against the backdrop of the stage. It felt like a fitting tribute to America's greatest export of the past 50 years.
Though some performances in the hip-hop celebration only lasted a few seconds, the audience tended to recognize them within a few bars, for one glorious, collective nostalgic trip.
Of all the stars living their best lives in the audience, none seemed quite as happy as hip-hop royal Jay-Z, who would perform later in the night with DJ Khaled, rapping along to every lyric. Though table-mates Lizzo and Adele came in a close second for dancing at the Grammys like they were getting ready to turn up in the club.