Written by Shelby Elizabeth • Photography by L. Cohen, Getty Images • February 13, 2017
"Lady Marmalade” — Christina Aguilera, P!nk, Mya, Lil’ Kim, Missy Elliot and Patti Labelle
Kicking it off with girl power, we can’t help but love seeing five of the 2000s most outspoken women on stage together only to be joined by the legend Patti Labelle. It isn’t shocking that the women became one of the early 2000s most memorable performances.
”Stronger” — Kanye West ft. Daft Punk
In true Kanye fashion, he brought Daft Punk around for their first live TV performance ever. It isn’t lost on us the insane possibilities 'Ye created with the French duo, and the GRAMMY performance was a catapult for new avenues between rap and electronic music. Also, who can forget those light-up Yeezy sunglasses? Can we bring them back please?
“Let’s Stay Together” — Al Green, Justin Timberlake, Keith Urban, Boyz II Men
These vocal harmonies qualify it for the most soulful GRAMMY performance in our hearts. We already knew Justin had roots in soul, but pairing him up with The Reverend and Boyz II Men while Keith Urban rocked JT's soul cred.
“Same Love/Open Your Heart” — Mackelmore, Mary Lambert, Queen Latifah, Madonna
The second most tear-jerking GRAMMY moment in history was when Queen Latifah officiated the weddings of 33 couples while Mary Lambert, Madonna and Mackelmore literally sing their blessings over it. No other wedding could possibly compare.
”Proud Mary” — Beyoncé and Tina Turner
We watched Tina Turner pass the torch to Beyoncé on this historic evening. Queen Bey opened Tina’s performance by calling her “Queen,” and then Queen T brought out B to join her in performing her biggest hit ever, passing along the crown and creating a new generation of strong independent women leaders in music. 2008, you blessed us.
”Stan” — Eminem and Elton John
2001 was a big year of controversy for Eminem. Under fire from the LGBTQ+ community, the rapper wanted to make it clear he supported everyone. Teaming up with one of the biggest advocates for LGBTQ+ rights, Elton John, they performed his hit single “Stan.” The song in general is tear invoking, but seeing Elton John sing its sorrowful chorus just leads to all the cries.
Michael Jackson GRAMMY Tribute
In 2009, the King of Pop passed away suddenly. The world felt the gravity of his death, and the 2010 GRAMMYs were no exception. Celine Deon, Usher, Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Hudson, Smoky Robinson and the voice of the King himself performed his “Earth Song,” perfectly summing up Micahel Jackson in a song. Watch it and try not to cry… we can’t.
”Burnin’ Up” and “Superstition” — Jonas Brothers and Stevie Wonder
Oh 2009, how we miss the reign of the JoBros. This GRAMMYs was really where we saw the JoBros say “Hey we aren’t just a ridiculously good looking group of singing brothers, we’re really talented musicians. Watch us perform with the legend Steve Wonder.” And boy did they impress. We can happily stare at Joe Jonas in a black vest for the rest of our lives.
”Radioactive/M.a.a.d. City” — Imagine Dragons and Kendrick Lamar
Anything with Kendrick Lamar deserves a standing ovation, but combining his big hit “Maad City" with Imagine Dragons’ “Radioactive” just felt right back in 2014. Imagine Dragons matches Kenderick’s energy perfectly, and it’s an unlikely yet beautiful combination we could watch at all GRAMMYs.
”Numb/Encore” and "Yesterday” — JAY Z/Linkin Park and Paul McCartney
In what is still to this day a personal favorite Grammy performance, JAY Z and Linkin Park made one of the most unlikely move on the GRAMMYs stage ever. They combined their mega-hit single “Numb” with the beautiful Beatles ballad “Yesterday.” Oh, and they brought out Paul McCartney. Best performance ever? We think so.
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