“We Are Standing Here Heartbroken”: Alicia Keys Leads Emotional Tribute For Kobe Bryant & His Daughter At Grammys
The buzz that normally fills the air at the Grammys was dampened today due to the tragic passing of Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna. Despite having just a few hours between the news and the ceremony, host Alicia Keys and Boyz II Men prepared a tribute to the late basketball player and his daughter who, along with seven others, died in a helicopter accident on Sunday.
"To be honest with you we're all feeling crazy sad right now because earlier today, Los Angeles, America, and the whole wide world lost a hero," Keys kicked began her opening speech. "We're literally standing here heartbroken in the house that Kobe Bryant built...Right now Kobe and his daughter Gianna and all those that were tragically lost today are in our spirits, hearts, and prayers."
The singer then asked the room to take a moment of silence as Boyz II Men joined her on stage.
"We wanted to do something that could describe a tiny bit how we all feel right now," she said as the group broke into a harmonized rendition of their song "It's So Hard To Say Goodbye."
"We gotta make this a celebration in his honor," Keys later added while playing piano. "He would want us to keep these vibrations high."
This wasn't the first tribute to Bryant tonight. Lizzo kicked off her opening performance with a nod to the loss, and interim Recording Academy CEO Harvey Mason Jr. held another moment of silence in a non-televised segment ahead of the ceremony, according to The Associated Press.
"As most of you may know, we lost Kobe Bryant in a tragic helicopter accident today," he said. "Since we are in his house, I would ask you to join me in a moment of silence."
Bryant's loss will be felt long past this night, but the 2020 Grammys will always be remembered as a tribute to his life.