The majority of this year’s Grammy Award categories were presented in a pre-show ceremony that streamed online, and Taylor Swift took two awards: Best Pop Album for her crossover hit “1989” as well as Best Music Video for “Bad Blood,” which she shared with Kendrick Lamar. (Click here for the complete list of nominees and winners.)
Swift has seven total nominations this year, but trails Lamar’s remarkable 11 bids. Lamar was actually the biggest winner at the pre-show with three other victories: Best Rap Performance and Best Rap Song (both for “Alright“) as well as Best Rap/Sung Collaboration (“These Walls” with Bilal, Anna Wise and Thundercat).
The Weeknd, who tied Taylor Swift with seven nominations, took Best Urban Contemporary Album for “Beauty Behind the Madness,” which is also up for Album of the Year. He also prevailed for Best R&B Performance for his Oscar-nominated “Earned It” from “Fifty Shades of Grey.”
Meanwhile, Ed Sheeran finally won his first Grammy, Best Pop Solo Performance (“Thinking Out Loud“), after four straight years of nominations. Best Pop Duo/Group Performance went to Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars for “Uptown Funk,” while Dave Aude‘s remix of “Uptown Funk” took Best Remixed Recording.
Justin Bieber also claimed the first Grammy of his career: Best Dance Recording for “Where Are U Now” with Skrillex and Diplo. Skrillex and Diplo also won Best Dance/Electronic Album for “Skrillex and Diplo Present Jack U.” Skrillex has now won a whopping eight Grammys since breaking out in 2011.
Leading country artist Chris Stapleton won Best Country Solo Performance (“Traveller“), defeating Grammy darling Carrie Underwood (“Little Toy Guns“). He contends for Album of the Year at the primetime telecast.
Little Big Town received Best Country Duo/Group for “Girl Crush.” This is their second career Grammy, following a victory in this category in 2012 for “Pontoon.” “Girl Crush” also won Best Country Song for its writers Hillary Lindsay, Liz Rose and Lori McKenna, who are also up for Song of the Year for the tune.
Best Spoken Word Album went to former US president Jimmy Carter for “A Full Life: Reflections at Ninety,” while Best Comedy Album was awarded to Louis C.K. for “Live at Madison Square Garden.” It was the second win for both in their respective categories.
Best Visual Media Compilation went to “Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me,” produced by Julian Raymond. Antonio Sanchez won Best Visual Media Score for “Birdman” despite being disqualified from the Oscars last year; this is his first win in this category, but his fourth Grammy overall. However, one of last year’s Oscar champs did prevail in the Visual Media field: “Glory” (from “Selma“) by Common and John Legend took Visual Media Song, defeating Song of the Year nominee “See You Again” by Wiz Khalifa and Charlie Puth.
Ricky Martin took Best Latin Pop Album for “A Quien Quiera Escuchar,” which is only his second ever Grammy win and his first since claiming Best Latin Pop Performance for “Vuelve” back in 1998. Fellow Latin superstar Pitbull took Best Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album for “Dale,” which is his first ever victory at these awards (though he was previously a Latin Grammy winner).
The last award of the night was Producer of the Year (Non-Classical), which went to Jeff Bhasker, whose credits this year include “Uptown Funk” and Ronson’s album “Uptown Special.”