If you want to know who wins big at the Grammys, don’t wait until the evening’s telecast. That televised event on CBS is jam-packed with performances, so there are usually only a few top awards presented throughout the night. The real main event for eagle-eyed awards watches is the afternoon Premiere Ceremony, where most of the 84 Grammy categories are decided. Scroll down for our live blog with the key moments, winners, upsets, and analysis of the pre-show, which starts streaming at 3:30pm Eastern/12:30pm Pacific on Grammy.com.
While the top awards — including Album of the Year, Record of the Year, Song of the Year and Best New Artist — will be handed out in the evening, there are actually dozens of categories spanning genres from rock, pop and R&B to jazz, American roots, new age and classical. The majority of these prizes were doled out at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, California, right across from the Staples Center where the primetime telecast will be held.
These festivities are hosted by Grammy-winning reggae artist Shaggy, who was a nominee for Best Reggae Album again this year for his collaboration with Sting, “44/876.” Performers at the Premiere Ceremony are Grammy nominees Sofi Tukker (Best Dance/Electronic Album for “Treehouse”), Snatam Kaur (Best New Age Album for “Beloved”), Craig Morris (Best Classical Instrumental Solo for “Glass”), Seun Kuti (Best World Music Album for “Black Times”) and Fatoumata Diawara (Best World Music Album for “Fenfo”).
Presenters for the event include Lzzy Hale of the Grammy nominated rock band Halestorm, Kalani Pe’a, Questlove, Cécile McLorin Salvant, TOKiMONSTA and Jimmy Jam. Find out what happened below starting at 3:30pm (all times listed are Eastern).
3:46pm — First award of the night goes to Dave Chappelle: Best Comedy Album for “Equanimity and The Bird Revelation.” This is his second straight victory in the category. Meanwhile, Tony winner “The Band’s Visit” takes down “Jesus Christ Superstar” for Best Musical Theater Album, which means poor Sara Bareilles is still Grammy-less.
3:52pm — Beck wins Best Alternative Album for “Colors.” That’s his third win in the category, following his victories for “Odelay” (1997) and “Mutations” (2000). This ties the all-time record shared by Radiohead and The White Stripes, who have also won the prize three times.
3:57 — Oscar nominee Terence Blanchard takes home the award for Best Instrumental Composition for “Blood and Soil” from “BlacKkKlansman.” This is the fifth Grammy of his career. He beat the likes of John Williams (“Solo”) and Alexandre Desplat (“The Shape of Water”), so could this be a good sign for Blanchard as we move towards the Oscars in a couple of weeks.
3:59pm — Weird Al Yankovic explains that he’s been playing the “long game” until he could finally win a Grammy as an art director. He prevailed for Best Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package for “Squeeze Box: The Complete Works Of Weird Al Yankovic.” It’s the fifth win for the musical comedian.
4:04pm — Beck wins again! He claims Best Engineered Album for “Colors,” but the victory for significant for another reason: Emily Lazar reveals upon accepting the award with the engineering team that she’s the first woman ever to win the award. Considering the sheer number of engineers nominated every year and the number of winners in the “Colors” team alone, that’s … crazy.
4:16pm — Tori Kelly didn’t win Best New Artist when she was nominated in 2016, but now she’s a first-time Grammy winner: Best Gospel Performance/Song for “Never Alone” with Kirk Franklin. When it comes to the Grammys it pays to team up with Franklin, who has now won 13 times.
4:17pm — And Tori Kelly goes two for two with her victory for Best Gospel Album for “Hiding Place”! Country/Christian singer Lauren Daigle is also a double winner tonight with victories for Best Contemporary Christian Music Performance (“You Say”) and Best Contemporary Christian Album (“Look Up Child”).
4:27pm — “The Greatest Showman” takes Best Visual Media Compilation. This gives songwriters Justin Paul and Benj Pasek their second Grammys, while star Hugh Jackman picks up his first Grammy. Jackman already has a Tony and an Emmy, so he’s now just an Oscar away from EGOT.
4:29pm — “Black Panther” takes Best Visual Media Score for Ludwig Goransson over last year’s Oscar winner Desplat (“The Shape of Water”). Goransson is also nominated for his work with Childish Gambino on his songs “This is America” and “Feels Like Summer.”
4:32pm — Lady Gaga officially wins BAFTA and Grammy in the same day as she takes Best Visual Media Song for “Shallow” from “A Star is Born” along with her co-writers Mark Ronson, Anthony Rossomando and Andrew Wyatt. This is the seventh Grammy of her career, and she has four other nominations tonight. Bradley Cooper doesn’t share this victory since he didn’t write “Shallow,” but Cooper has a couple of chances to win for his vocal performance: Record of the Year and Best Pop Duo/Group Performance.
4:41pm — “It’s our first Grammy!” exclaims Brandi Carlile upon winning the first of her six nominations: Best American Roots Performance for “The Joke.” Immediately after she won Best American Roots Song, which is a songwriting award. And she completed her sweep by claiming Best Americana Album for “By the Way, I Forgive You.” “Americana music is the island of the misfit toys … It is this music that has shaped my life.” She recounted how she came out of the closet when she was 15 and never went to any dances; this was a great dance to be invited to now. Later tonight she’s up for Album of the Year, Record of the Year and Song of the Year.
4:51pm — The legendary 82-year-old Buddy Guy wins his eighth Grammy: Best Traditional Blues Album for “The Blues Is Alive And Well.” The last time he was at the Grammys was three years ago when he was given a Lifetime Achievement Award by the recording academy.
5:04pm — Jimmy Carter wins Best Spoken Word Album for “Faith: A Journey for All.” He previously won the category for “Our Endangered Values: America’s Moral Crisis” (2007) and “A Full Life: Reflections at Ninety” (2016). He’s the most awarded American president in Grammy history, and at age 94 he’s the third oldest Grammy winner in history behind Pinetop Perkins (97) and George Burns (95).
5:18pm — Luis Miguel once held the record as the youngest Grammy winner of all time when he prevailed at age 14 in 1985. He just won the sixth award of his career, Best Regional Mexican Musical Album for “¡México Por Siempre!”
5:21pm — Kalani Pe’a just finished presenting a slew of Grammy categories, and he just one a prize of his own: Best Regional Roots Music Album for “No ‘Ane’i.”
5:24pm — Childish Gambino wins his first award of the night and the second award of his career: Best Music Video for “This is America.” The award also goes to director Hiro Murai, who recently earned an Emmy nomination for the “Atlanta” episode “Teddy Perkins.”
5:29pm — “Quincy” wins Best Music Film, which is a historic victory. Quincy Jones has now won 28 competitive Grammys, breaking his tie with Alison Krauss as the most awarded living artist. And his daughter Rashida Jones, who co-directed to film, is a first-time Grammy winner.
5:33pm — The Grammys hand out their country prizes: Kacey Musgraves takes Best Country Solo Performance (“Butterflies”) and Best Country Song (“Space Cowboy”), while Dan and Shay claim Best Country Duo/Group Performance (“Tequila”). These are the third and fourth victories for Musgraves, and the first ever for Dan and Shay. Musgraves is up for Album of the Year later tonight.
5:39pm — Could Lady Gaga be on her way to a Grammys sweep? She just surprised us by winning Best Pop Solo Performance for “Joanne,” the title track from her last album. She’s now two-for-two, with three more “Shallow” nominations left.
5:40pm — Ariana Grande may not be too happy with Grammy producers right about now, but she should be happy about this: she just won the first Grammy of her career, Best Pop Vocal Album for “Sweetener.” She has been nominated six times overall in her career.
5:41pm — Willie Nelson is a beloved musician, but it was still surprising that he won Best Traditional Pop Album for “My Way.” Tony Bennett was also nominated for “Love is Here to Stay” with Diana Krall, and he has won the award more than a dozen times. This is Nelson’s second win in this category following his victory for “Summertime: Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin” in 2017, and it’s his ninth victory overall.
6:10pm — Dua Lipa wins her first Grammy: Best Dance Recording for “Electricity” with Silk City, Diplo and Mark Ronson. She’s nominated for Best New Artist later tonight. And Ronson, who just won Best Visual Media Song for “Shallow,” is also up for Song of the Year for the Lady Gaga soundtrack song.
6:13pm — “It’s nice to be nominated. It’s better to win,” says Shaggy. The Premiere Ceremony host wins his second Grammy for Best Reggae Album with Sting for “44/876.” This is the 17th Grammy for Sting, but unsurprisingly it’s Sting’s first win for reggae.
6:17pm — Another Grammy presenter tonight returns to the stage as a winner. Cecile McLorin Salvant just handed out several prizes, and she just won Best Jazz Vocal Album for “The Window.” This is her third win in four years.
6:27pm — H.E.R. wins her first nomination of the night: Best R&B Performance for “Best Part” featuring Daniel Caesar. This was a big victory for her since she was up against Beyonce and Jay-Z for “Summer.”
6:31pm — First tie of the night! Best Traditional R&B Perfformance goes to Leon Bridges for “Bet Ain’t Worth the Hand” and to PJ Morton and Yebba for “How Deep is Your Love.” It’s the first win for all three artists.
6:34pm — Ella Mai claims Best R&B Song for “Boo’d Up,” which is up for Song of the Year later tonight. Meanwhile, Beyonce and Jay-Z avoid a shut-out by winning Best Urban Contemporary Album for “Everything is Love.” That moves Beyonce to a career total of 23 awards and Jay-Z to a total of 22.
6:38pm — Chris Cornell is the third posthumous winner in a row for Best Rock Performance. He prevailed for “When Bad Does Good,” which follows victories in the last two years by David Bowie and Leonard Cohen. The award was accepted by his children, who said, “This is for you, daddy, and we love you so much.”
6:40pm — “Masseduction” claims Best Rock Song for St. Vincent, who co-wrote the song with Jack Antonoff. This is St. Vincent’s second Grammy and Antonoff’s fourth. St. Vincent was also up for Best Alternative Album this year, but lost that prize to Beck.
6:48pm — The Grammys spread the wealth in the rap categories. Kendrick Lamar won Best Rap Performance, as usual: he prevailed for “King’s Dead” from the “Black Panther” soundtrack with Jay Rock, Future and James Blake, but he had to share that award in another tie. Anderson Paak also won that award for “Bubblin.” And then Childish Gambino won his second award of the night: Best Rap/Sung Performance for “This is America.”
6:49pm — The last award of the night went to Pharrell Williams: Producer of the Year (Non-Classical). This was his 3rd victory in the category and his 12th victory overall.
6:54pm — When all was said and done, a lot of artists won multiple awards at this Premiere Ceremony, but no one was overwhelmingly dominant. Of the top contenders for awards later tonight, Brandi Carlile led the way with three victories. Lady Gaga, Mark Ronson, Kacey Musgraves, Childish Gambino, and “Black Panther” won twice each.