(For a complete list of 53rd GRAMMY Awards winners, click here.)
Rap music was once considered a genre for the young. But as the youths grew up, rap continued to mature with them while inspiring a new generation of lyricists, beatmakers and global superstars. The 53rd Annual GRAMMY Awards demonstrated the strength of rap's veterans and steadily showcased the promise of its future. The result was a celebration of longevity in a genre that's considered for the young at heart.
Two of the strongest pillars of rap, Jay-Z and Eminem, were victorious on Music's Biggest Night — with Eminem winning for Best Rap Solo Performance for "Not Afraid" and Best Rap Album for Recovery, while the Jigga Man won for Best Rap Performance By A Duo Or Group (alongside Swizz Beatz) for "On To The Next One," and Best Rap/Sung Collaboration and Best Rap Song for "Empire State Of Mind" with Alicia Keys. The fact that Eminem and Jay-Z are in their early 30s and late 40s, respectively, prove they haven't slowed down their paths to success. In fact, they are both still at the top of their game. Newcomers such as Drake, B.o.B and Nicki Minaj, who were all nominated in the Rap Field this year, are still climbing to the top of rap supremacy.
"Empire State Of Mind" chimed through every urban and rural street in the United States and even gained some momentum on an episode of "Glee." With the potent combination of Jay-Z and Keys, it's no wonder rap heads — young and old — were feeling this song in 2010.
The spotlight was definitely on seasoned rappers and it didn't stop with Jay-Z and Eminem. Rap staple Ludacris teamed with Minaj for "My Chick Bad," nominated for Best Rap Performance By A Duo Or Group, while John Legend teamed with the legendary Roots crew and Melanie Fiona for a collaboration that combined more than 20 years of hip-hop and soul in their Best Rap/Sung Collaboration-nominated song "Wake Up Everybody."
At the end of the night, the winners and nominees captured the essence of rap music in the 21st century. This is not your father's rap music — it's your music and his music. Before you know it, it will be your children's music and rap will continue to evolve into a genre for the ages.