The late Nipsey Hussle is among the early winners of the 2020 Grammys at a preshow event that began shortly after news broke of the basketball star’s death.
All but eight of the Grammys’ 84 awards were given out before the television broadcast, in a separate “premiere” ceremony that is plagued by celebrity absences — but also features non-stars celebrating how a Grammy win can be a career-defining moment.
Nipsey Hussle, the rapper who died last March at 33, won his first Grammy for “Racks in the Middle,” which took best rap performance. Family members spoke, including his grandmother, who said: “I wanted to thank all of you for showing all the love that I have felt for him all of his life and will always live in my heart. So thank you, thank you, thank you.” Hussle is to be celebrated during the telecast in a performance segment scheduled to include Kirk Franklin, DJ Khaled, John Legend, Meek Mill, Roddy Ricch and YG.
In the lead-up to the televised show Sunday afternoon, the news that Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash at 41 led to gasps in the press room. The Grammys take place at the Staples Center, where Bryant played nearly his entire career with the Los Angeles Lakers; championship banners he helped the team win hang from the building’s rafters.
“In Staples Arena, where Kobe created so many memories for all of us, preparing to pay tribute to another brilliant man we lost too soon, Nipsey Hussle,” John Legend wrote on Twitter. “Life can be so brutal and senseless sometimes.”
Flags outside the arena were lowered to half-staff as preparations for the event continued, and lights shined on Bryant’s jerseys inside. Harvey Mason Jr., the chairman and interim chief of the Recording Academy, called for a moment of silence.
“Since we are in his house, I would ask you to join me in a moment of silence,” Mason said, The Associated Press reported.
Source: New York Times
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