meta-scriptMegan Thee Stallion Wins Best New Artist | 2021 GRAMMY Awards Show | GRAMMY.com
Megan Thee Stallion Wins Best New Artist | 2021 GRAMMY Awards Show

Megan Thee Stallion at 2021 GRAMMYs

Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images for The Recording Academy

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Megan Thee Stallion Wins Best New Artist | 2021 GRAMMY Awards Show

Houston rapper Megan Thee Stallion takes home Best New Artist at the 2021 GRAMMYs

GRAMMYs/Mar 15, 2021 - 05:21 am

Megan Thee Stallion won Best New Artist at the 63rd GRAMMY Awards. This marks her second GRAMMY win of the evening—the Houston rapper also won Best Rap Performance for her "Savage Remix" with Beyoncé. Watch the "Captian Hook" rapper's joyful acceptance speech below.

Megan held back tears as she accepted her big award from GRAMMY winner Lizzo. In her heartfelt acceptance speech, she celebrated fellow fellow nominees Ingrid Andress, Phoebe Bridgers, Chika, Noah Cyrus, D Smoke, Doja Cat and Kaytranada. 

Stay tuned to GRAMMY.com for all things GRAMMY Awards, and make sure to catch the rest of the action live on CBS and Paramount+.

Check out all the complete 2021 GRAMMY Awards show winners and nominees list here.

New Artists, Lasting Legends and Iconic Performances: Inside Clive Davis's 2024 Pre-Grammy Gala
Sabrina Carpenter, Ice Spice, Lana Del Rey and Jack Antonoff attend the Clive Davis Pre-GRAMMY Gala at the Beverly Hilton in Los Angeles.

Photo: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for The Recording Academy

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New Artists, Lasting Legends and Iconic Performances: Inside Clive Davis's 2024 Pre-Grammy Gala

Ahead of Music's Biggest Night, stars including Mariah Carey, Lenny Kravitz, Megan Thee Stallion, Chloe x Halle and more flocked to the annual Pre-GRAMMY Gala co-presented by the Recording Academy.

GRAMMYs/Feb 6, 2024 - 10:20 pm

Who better than Tom Hanks to say it best?

"Clive Davis has provided us with the soundtrack of our lives, our emotions and our inspirations," the legendary actor said of the night's premiement host; the legendary music executive, passionate advocate for the power of song and noted discoverer of artists. 

"Music is the food [of the soul], give us excess of it," said Hanks in his passionate opening soliloquy packed with approbation. "And tonight is a night of excess."

It's the stuff of legend, a topic of lore and an evening that regularly rockets itself in the pages of music history. For nearly 50 years, Clive Davis's Pre-GRAMMY Salute to Industry Icons has been a star-making opportunity for the music industry to celebrate their past monumental year, highlighting both veteran acts and tomorrow's superstars. For its 2024 edition, held on a rainy night at its regular home at the equally iconic Beverly Hilton Hotel the night before the GRAMMY Awards — its usual slot on the calendar — the grand master of music's party continued to provide a beacon of light for jaw-dropping performances and starry shoulder-rubbing. 

But before the party is the cocktail hour; a curious affair where music past and present collides. In one corner finds Producer Of The Year nominee Dan Nigro, the pop whisperer behind acclaimed acts ranging from Chappell Roan, Conan Gray and the multiple-Grammy nominated Olivia Rodrigo. A couple people away was Frankie Valli, last year's Pre-GRAMMY Gala opener who is currently in the midst of what he bills as a farewell tour. Looking around the room, the star power is abundant: Dianne Warren, the aforementioned Hanks with wife Rita Wilson, MusiCares' 2024 Person Of The Year Jon Bon Jovi, longtime Gala guest Nancy Pelosi alongside husband Paul. 

Just beyond the cocktail hour lies the red carpet, which boasts a head-snapping array of personalities. Megan Thee Stallion strutted in flaunting a gold-colored dress, while last year's Best New Artist winner Samara Joy sauntered in an equally dazzling gown. The list of guests includes an eclectic array of who's who in music: pop star Ellie Goulding, the dance-pop-country artist and producer Diplo, country-pop icon Shania Twain, recent Black Music Collective honorees Mariah Carey and Lenny Kravitz, the producer David Foster with wife Katherine McPhee, eventual three-time GRAMMY winners Julien Baker, Lucy Dacus, and Phoebe Bridgers (the trio otherwise known as Boygenius), and the following night's GRAMMY opener Dua Lipa, among countless others.

As the esteemed guests (which also included Kenneth "Babyface" EdmundsJanelle Monáe, Troye Sivan, Motown founder Berry Gordy, Smokey Robinson, the members of Earth, Wind and Fire and Charli XCX) settled into their seats in a ballroom with a stage outfitted with the bash's signature twinkle lights sparkling on the stage, a countdown on the monitors appeared. 3, 2, 1…

"We're going to play a game of word association," said Hanks, who was bestowed the honor of introducing Davis and to mark the occasion, he managed to recite a massive list of artists Davis had a hand or hands in making superstars, from Janis Joplin to Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen, right up to Whitney Houston and Alicia Keys. "The only reason why Mozart, Beethoven and Tchaikovsky weren't mentioned is because they all died before Clive Davis had a chance to introduce them," he joked.

"I've gotta tell you, the emotions run high," said Davis. "I look out among you and I see so many familiar faces. The whole thing began as long ago as 1976 and I really have to pinch myself that it's going so, so strong. I'm happy to say that music is alive and well."

Tennis great Serena Williams introduced the night's opening act, Green Day. "In 2022, Clive Davis and I were honored together when we were inducted into the National Portrait Gallery," she recalled. "I said to him, 'You've got to remember to invite me to your gala. I'm so thrilled to be back here to introduce my favorite band. To know me is to know my love for them."

The punk gods are currently making a comeback with their 14th studio album, Saviors, and celebrating the 30th anniversary of their breakout album Dookie and 20th anniversary of their massively successful LP American Idiot. The group honored both anniversaries with a song from each, "American Idiot" and "Basket Case."

In years past, the night's performers ranged a wide gamut; but to prove Davis's point and regenerative effects of the industry, this year a large portion of the roster of surprise performers were plucked from the 2024's crop of Best New Artist nominees. There was the singer-songwriter Noah Kahan, who busted out a rousing rendition of his own breakout "Stick Season," while Ice Spice hit the stage to deliver her 2023 solo hit, "Deli." 

Rising country star Jelly Roll was also bequeathed a coveted slot, proclaiming his excitement by saying he had "only read about the party in books and magazines." With that, he delivered rousing versions of his candid single "Need a Favor" backed by a choir, as well as his equally affecting "Save Me," on which he brought out duet partner and eventual GRAMMY winner Lainey Wilson.

In fact, it was Wilson who provided one of the most surprising moments of the night when she appeared to perform a special version of Barbie's "I'm Just Ken" accompanied by songwriter Andrew Watt on piano and Mark Ronson on guitar. Of course, Davis was the architect of the moment, an idea he said came to him last week; Ronson suggested Wilson after the song's original performer, the actor Ryan Gosling, was unavailable. 

"To look astound and to see some of the greatest musicians and record-makers, it's really an honor to be here," Ronson said. "This is a song we wrote for the movie Barbie about the beauty of being the runner-up sometimes, which is a lesson I know very well," he said to laughter. "It's pretty cool to be second sometimes."

2024 GRAMMYs: Explore More & Meet The Nominees

Fresh off his starring role on Broadway's Sweeney Todd, Josh Groban delivered a subtle tribute to the legend behind the Broadway musical by performing "Children Will Listen," before paying tribute to Davis himself with a gospel-tinged performance of Simon and Garfunkel's "Bridge Over Troubled Water," which Davis had a hand in releasing. Joining him was another Best New Artist nominee, The War and Treaty frontman Michael Trotter Jr., and the pair's joint vocal power brought the audience to its feet. 

Musical whiplash ensued with additional performances courtesy Maluma and Isley Brothers, the latter of which performed their instantly-recognizable "Shout" as a tribute to Chairman and CEO of SONY Music Publishing Jon Platt, the evening's Icon honoree. An award which in years past has gone to heavyweights including David Geffen, Mo Ostin, Ahmet Ertgun and Jerry Moss to name a few, Platt was touched by the honor and delivered a 40-minute speech chock full of stories and reflections. Not even a beeping fire alarm, which at one point blared and flashed through his speech, tripped up Platt.

"It's funny because Harvey called me and I thought he needed help with something," said Platt, recalling the moment the Recording Academy's CEO Harvey Mason jr. informed him of the honor. "But he said I was selected as this year's industry icon and I was like, 'Wow, man.'" 

Noting he needed convincing to accept the honor ("I'm [just] seeing so many other people doing great things," he relented), Platt's contributions to music, from his work with everyone from Isley Brothers to Beyonce to Jay-Z, and even Oliva Rodrigo, makes him both a genre and decade-spanning force. 

"You'll see a consistent thing with me is that I'm a music nerd-fanboy," Platt said, noting how a kind word from the composer Gerald Busby made this evening a full circle moment for him. "[One day in 1998] I saw him and we were making small talk and he said, 'Someone was asking me who I see in the industry today that can achieve the things that I can achieve. I told them that Big Jon's gonna run the whole thing one day.' For someone to share the belief they have in you is incredibly powerful. From that day, I changed the course of my focus. Everything had a purpose after that."

Another one of the artists Platt fostered performed in his honor as well: Public Enemy. "We're here for you and here for all of our heroes and hero-ettes," Chuck D declared before the group dove into an energetic medley of "Can't Truss It," "Bring the Noise" and "Fight the Power." 

It wouldn't be a Clive Davis bash without one final surprise. As 1 a.m. neared, Gladys Knight and Dionne Warwick hit the stage, with the former belting out a passionate version of "(The Way We Were) Memories" and the duo joining together for Warwick's endearing staple, "That's What Friends are For" alongside Andra Day. 

But from the electrified crowd, guest Stevie Wonder just couldn't help himself, getting up on stage to assist on harmonica. "This has been such a wonderful blessing to meet all of these people in my life; to meet Dionne, to meet Gladys," Wonder said, cueing up an unrehearsed and on-the-fly version of "What the World Needs Now Is Love" with the entire group. 

"I know this is what we need in the world," he continued. "There are many people that for so many years have been dividing people, not understanding the purpose that God has given us to come together."

It was a moving way to wrap up the night — and a fitting one at that, bringing together stars young and old to offer an inspiring message, and remind just how powerful music can be.

10 Must-See Moments From The 2024 GRAMMYs: Taylor Swift Makes History, Billy Joel & Tracy Chapman Return, Boygenius Manifest Childhood Dreams

2024 GRAMMYs: Victoria Monét Wins The GRAMMY For Best New Artist
Victoria Monét

Photo: Amy Sussman/Getty Images

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2024 GRAMMYs: Victoria Monét Wins The GRAMMY For Best New Artist

Victoria Monét beats Gracie Abrams, Fred again.., Ice Spice, Jelly Roll, Coco Jones, Noah Kahan, and The War And Treaty.

GRAMMYs/Feb 5, 2024 - 04:22 am

Victoria Monét has won Best New Artist at the 66th GRAMMY Awards.

Tearfully accepting the award, the rising R&B star gave an eloquent speech in which she compared herself to a plant growing out of the soil of the music industry. 

“My roots have been growing underneath ground, unseen, for so long, and I feel like today I’m sprouting, finally above ground,” she said.

Monét beat out Gracie Abrams, Fred again.., Ice Spice, Jelly Roll, Coco Jones, Noah Kahan, and The War and Treaty for the award. It was given out by last year’s winner, Samara Joy.

She really puts in the work and she is being rewarded now more than ever for it," producer D'Mile, who has known Monét since the beginning of her career, recently told GRAMMY.com. "She grows more and more confident and sure about what she's aiming for as she continues her journey."

This was not Monét’s first win. Her album Jaguar II won Best Engineered Album and Best R&B Album earlier in the day during the GRAMMYs Premiere Ceremony.

Keep checking this space for more updates from Music’s Biggest Night!

2024 GRAMMY Nominations: See The Full Nominees List

GRAMMY Rewind: Samara Joy Has A Full-Circle Moment During Best New Artist Win In 2023
Samara Joy at the 2023 GRAMMYs.

Photo: Amy Sussman

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GRAMMY Rewind: Samara Joy Has A Full-Circle Moment During Best New Artist Win In 2023

Samara Joy took a moment to praise the artists she watched on television as a little girl during her acceptance speech for Best New Artist at the 65th Annual GRAMMY Awards ceremony.

GRAMMYs/Jan 12, 2024 - 05:30 pm

Just last year, Samara Joy joined Esperanza Spalding and Norah Jones as the few jazz musicians to win Best New Artist in the 21st century. As pianist Geoffrey Keezer noted, Joy's win is a reminder that the genre "is still a part of [music], and it's important, and it's where it all came from."

In this episode of GRAMMY Rewind, revisit the moment Joy accepted her golden gramophone at the 2023 GRAMMYs.

"I've been singing my whole life," she said. "Thank you so much for this honor. Thank you to everyone who listened to me or supported me."

"I've been watching y'all on TV for so long," Joy tearfully cooed to the audience. "To be here because of who I am — all of you have inspired me because of who you are. You express yourself, exactly who you are, authentically."

Before exiting the stage, Joy praised her record label, Verve, management, and other members of her team. Joy was a two-time winner that night, also taking home the golden gramophone for Best Jazz Vocal Album for her second studio album, 'Linger Awhile.' She earned her third nomination at the 2024 GRAMMYs, a Best Jazz Performance nod for her self-produced track "Tight."

Watch the video above to see Samara Joy's complete acceptance speech for Best New Artist at the 2023 GRAMMYs. Check back to GRAMMY.com for more new episodes of GRAMMY Rewind, and tune into this year's show on Sunday, Feb. 4, airing live on the CBS Television Network (8-11:30 p.m. LIVE ET/5-8:30 p.m. LIVE PT) and streaming on Paramount+ (live and on-demand for Paramount+ with SHOWTIME subscribers, or on-demand for Paramount+ Essential subscribers the day after the special airs).

Meet The First-Time Nominee: Lakecia Benjamin On 'Phoenix,' Dogged Persistence & Constant Evolution

Get In Loser, We’re Watching The 'Mean Girls' Musical Movie: How The Cult Classic Was Reshaped For Modern Musical Relevance
Renée Rapp and Megan Thee Stallion attend the global premiere of 'Mean Girls' in New York City.

Photo: John Nacion / Getty Images for Paramount Pictures

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Get In Loser, We’re Watching The 'Mean Girls' Musical Movie: How The Cult Classic Was Reshaped For Modern Musical Relevance

Tina Fey’s 'Mean Girls' is back pinker than ever — but there’s plenty of teenage angst to go around. Ahead of the musical movie's Jan. 12 release, revisit 20 years of 'Mean Girls' and learn how its latest iteration came to life.

GRAMMYs/Jan 11, 2024 - 02:20 pm

It’s not my fault you’re, like, in love with Mean Girls or something. Twenty years after its wildly popular debut, Tina Fey’s brain child — based on Rosalind Wiseman’s self-help book Queen Bees and Wannabees — remains a beloved staple of pop culture. So much so that the movie is getting a musical reboot.

In the 2004 teen comedy, Lindsay Lohan plays the new girl at school, a naïve 16-year-old transfer student Cady Heron who has yet to experience the ups and downs of the high school hierarchy. Miraculously, she lands herself a spot with "the Plastics," the popular but cruel clique helmed by Regina George (Rachel McAdams), and the group quickly kickstarts Cady’s journey of self-discovery.

The 2024 Mean Girls Musical Movie stars singer-actor Reneé Rapp as Regina George and Australian actress Angourie Rice (Spider-Man, "Black Mirror" and "Mare of Easttown") as Cady. The 12-song soundtrack is led by "Not My Fault," a midtempo dance pop bop performed by Rapp and Megan Thee Stallion; its title, of course, is inspired around an iconic line from Regina George ("It's not my fault you're, like, in love with me or something").

Regina's message is updated for 2024. Rapp, who is openly bisexual, encourages her listeners to "Kiss a blonde, kiss a friend! Can a gay girl get an amen?" on the track. Knowing its place in pop culture, Mean Girls metamorphoses as a sign of the times, and a queer Regina George is just what 2024 needed (and hoped for).

Keeping in mind its $17 million budget, it’s easy to point to Mean Girls’ $129 million box office gross as a quantifiable measure of the movie’s achievements. Or its sweep at the 2004 Teen Choice Awards. Or the 2005 MTV Movie Awards. But the film earned so much more than these material accolades — from style to memes to music videos, Mean Girls became a cultural touchstone with life long beyond the early aughts.

The movie inspired countless memes, GIFs and merch, and it’s quoted by everyone from your average fan to Mariah Carey to Wet Leg to even the White House. Fans declared Oct. 3 as "Mean Girls Day" in reference to one of Cady’s lines. The iconic music video for Ariana Grande’s No. 1 hit "thank u, next" was Mean Girls themed and starred original cast members. And Wednesdays are for wearing pink, of course.

Mean Girls also helped establish 2000s "It Girl" starpower: Lindsay Lohan became a household name; Amanda Seyfried, a future Oscar nominee, made her film debut; and McAdams starred opposite Ryan Gosling in The Notebook later that same year. Even Fey, who was already a popular "SNL" regular, found herself climbing to a new level of fame.

Internet culture helped Mean Girls find a second life — and music importantly helped it find a third. The 2004 film’s comedic timelessness earned a musical stage adaptation of the same name, which debuted in Washington D.C. in 2017 and ran on Broadway from April 2018 to March 2020.

A film adaptation of the musical (also of the same name) is hitting theaters on Jan. 12, in which Rapp reprises her Broadway role of Regina George. (Rapp played the blonde queen bee as a 2019-2020 replacement for Taylor Louderman.)

"As Regina, Reneé has this quality that Regina has to have, which is you're scared of her, but you also really want her to like you," Fey, who returned to write the Mean Girls (2024) screenplay, told Screen Rant. "You want her to notice you. You want her to approve of you. You want her to shine her light on you."

In addition to Rapp as the Plastics’ reigning leader, the Mean Girls musical has quite the roster. The film stars Christopher Briney  as her love interest Aaron Samuels, Bebe Wood as Plastics’ member Gretchen Wieners, and Busy Phillips as Regina's mom (a character originally portrayed by Amy Poheler).

Fey knew that a brilliant cast was only one step toward making the 2024 musical film a success. Alongside directors Samantha Jayne and Arturo Perez Jr., Fey was tasked with crafting something modern and innovative that still maintained the magic of the original.

"I think the key goals for this version were for it to be fun, fresh, and surprising," Fey told Screen Rant. "Most people who will see this movie have seen the original; a fair chunk of them have seen the musical, but how can we delight and surprise them? What can we give them that they didn't expect while still bringing them these characters that they have affection for?"

Perfect surprises can take a long time to craft. The stage musical took years to put together, for instance; the creative process began in 2013, and it debuted on stage four years later. But it was all worth the wait — the show was refreshing and nuanced, constructed carefully for its eager and often young audiences.

"I really love that we’re bringing young people out, especially young women," Broadway performer Louderman told Cosmopolitan. "I want [young people women] to feel more empowered to say how they feel and to deal with their emotions in a very straightforward and respectful manner."

For the sake of time and tonality, not all 14 songs from the original Broadway musical made the cut in the 2024 film adaptation. Each song was reworked by lyricist Jeff Richmond and composer Neil Benjamin. Taking the essence of the 2004 film, Richmond and Benjamin’s lyrics transformed Mean Girls into a new theatrical form. From Regina’s hair-raising anthem "World Burn" to ex-Plastic Janis Ian’s cathartic "I’d Rather Be Me," music breathed new life into the movie’s classic genius.

From the screen to the stage to, well, the screen again, Mean Girls has stood the test of time for good reason. Beyond its enduring cultural relevance and musical revitalization, its classic comedy makes it stand out — whether a laugh is conveyed through a perfectly delivered line on screen, or a witty lyric belted out on stage.

"It makes you laugh rather than depicting [adolescence] as solely being a drag," director Mark Waters said of the original Mean Girls to Cosmopolitan. "It also makes you realize you’re going to survive, make it out of this phase and be a better person for it."

Waters’ comment sheds light on a critical, though often painful lesson from Mean Girls: accepting change. Though it was predominantly written for female adolescents in mind as a target audience, the film smartly speaks to more than female politics: it encapsulates the human experience. Nearly everyone knows what it’s like wanting to desperately fit in, what it’s like to want to skip your awkward teenage years full of crushes and acne and jealousy. When an originally homeschooled Cady finds herself in high school for the first time, she learns to adapt — and most importantly, learns how to stay true to herself.

"It seems to be a rite of passage for high school girls to see the movie," Waters continued. "Beyond all the gags, there's something that's really authentic and timeless about how much of a struggle it is to be that age."

While some may superficially disregard Mean Girls as a silly chick flick or throwaway teen comedy, its modern revamps through music speak to the film's timelessness. Beyond being a stellar candidate for reinvention over a generation, Mean Girls meets audiences where they're at.  

"​​It has this little net that catches girls as they pass through preteen and high school age," Fey told the New York Times. "Girls will come up to me and say it helped them get through a terrible year."

Whether it’s 2004 or 2024, Mean Girls is one of those films that’s comfortable knowing exactly what it is. It’s okay with being silly, and it still has more than enough heart. Like its protagonist Cady, Mean Girls isn’t supposed to be perfect; it’s just meant to be relatable. And that’s what makes it so fetch.

Reneé Rapp On Debut Album 'Snow Angel,' Her Musical Community & Being Honest "To A Fault"