As expected, Camila Cabello opened up the 2019 Grammy Awards with her smash hit “Havana.” The Cuban-American pop star was accompanied by collaborator Young Thug, Latinx icon Ricky Martin, hitmaker J Balvin, jazz player Arturo Sandoval, and her real-life family for a dazzling tribute to Latin music, complete with a subtle political statement. Eagle-eyed viewers will have noticed that before Balvin’s official introduction into the Grammys medley performance, he was reading a newspaper. The front page headline read, “Build Bridges Not Walls.”
The powerful statement fueled an outpouring of pride and support from fans watching at home.
Earlier in the evening, Cabello sharing the emotional explanation of how her grandmother’s history influenced the singer's most meaningful awards show performance yet.
While speaking to Ryan Seacrest on the pre-show red carpet, she confirmed she brought her whole family along with her, including her mother Sinuhe Cabello, dad Alejandro Cabello, younger sister Sofia Cabello, and grandmother, who has already proven she's Cabello's biggest fan.
The reason for having the “whole squad” in tow, as Cabello said, was for more than mere moral support as the pop star waits to see if she wins either of her two Grammy categories (Best Pop Solo Performance and Best Pop Vocal album).
“The performance is based on my grandma’s childhood,” Cabello revealed. Her grandmother, who grew up in Cuba, was raised in a collaborative home where people shared a common patio. Oftentimes, “jam sessions” would pop up in the sprawling abode. “The whole thing is based off of my family, and I have my family in the performance. So I feel very protected."
This isn’t the first time Cabello has involved her family in her biggest awards show appearances. The Fifth Harmony alum brought her mother Sinuhe Cabello as her date to the 2018 MTV VMAs, where Cabello took home the coveted Video Of The Year and Artist Of The Year awards. One of the breakout moments of the evening was the impromptu dance party between Cabello and Columbian superstar Maluma… which eventually included her mom. Mrs. Cabello also gave her daughter a huge hug when she officially won one of her many Moonman statues of the evening.
Now we know those sweet August 2018 Cabello family awards show moments were just an appetizer to the massive Grammys main course.
This story has been updated with additional information.