meta-scriptTaylor Swift's Road To 'Folklore': How The Superstar Evolved From 'Diaristic' Country Tunes To Her Most Progressive Music Yet | GRAMMY.com
Taylor Swift's Road To 'Folklore': How The Superstar Evolved From 'Diaristic' Country Tunes To Her Most Progressive Music Yet

Taylor Swift

 

Photo Courtesy Of Taylor Swift

 

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Taylor Swift's Road To 'Folklore': How The Superstar Evolved From 'Diaristic' Country Tunes To Her Most Progressive Music Yet

With her enchanting eighth album, 'folklore,' Taylor Swift celebrates five GRAMMY nominations and a praiseworthy return to what she does best: storytelling

GRAMMYs/Mar 10, 2021 - 10:56 pm

For Women's History Month 2021, GRAMMY.com is celebrating some of the women artists nominated at the 2021 GRAMMY Awards show. Today, we honor Taylor Swift, who's currently nominated for six GRAMMYs.

When we met Taylor Swift in 2006, it was immediately apparent that her songwriting approach was like ripping a page out of her diary.

"Just a boy in a Chevy truck/ That had a tendency of gettin' stuck/ On backroads at night/ And I was right there beside him all summer long/ And then the time we woke up to find that summer gone," she lamented in the first verse of her debut single, "Tim McGraw." The way the then-16-year-old Swift could turn personal anecdotes into instantly memorable hooks mirrored the prowess of an industry veteran, appealing to more than just the teenage girls that could relate to a short-lived high school romance.

Now, nearly 15 years later, Swift has introduced another layer of intrigue with a foray into indie folk, unveiling a pair of albums, folklore and evermore, last year. Recorded entirely in isolation after the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March 2020, folklore has been widely acclaimed as Swift's best album, touted for its intimate songwriting and cinematic dynamics; evermore has received similarly glowing reviews.

folklore was 2020's best-selling album and earned Swift five GRAMMY nominations at the 2021 GRAMMY Awards show, including her fourth Album Of The Year nod. (evermore will be eligible for the 64th GRAMMY Awards in 2022.) As her 10 previous GRAMMY wins suggest, though, this new chapter isn't an abrupt departure for the star—it's a masterful continuation of her evolution as a singer/songwriter.

If there's one thing that Swift has proven throughout her career, it's that she refuses to be put in a box. Her ever-evolving sound took her from country darling to pop phenom to folk's newest raconteur—a transition that, on paper, seems arduous. But for Swift, it was seamless and resulted in perhaps her most defining work yet. And folklore’s radiance relies on three of Swift’s songwriting tools: heartfelt balladeering, autobiographical writing, and character-driven storytelling.

While there was always a crossover element to Swift's pop-leaning country tunes, her transition from country starlet to pop queen began with Red. The album’s lead single, the feisty breakup anthem "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together," was Swift's first release to reach No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 (and, ironically, scoffed "indie records much cooler than mine"). She declared a full pop makeover with 2014's 1989, but the response proved that her bold move was the right one: Along with spawning three more No. 1 hits, the project won Swift her second GRAMMY for Album of the Year.

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From there, 2017’s Reputation, a response to media scrutiny, and 2019’s Lover, an often bubbly exploration of all facets of affection, followed. Although they shared similarly grandiose production, Lover featured a handful of poetic ballads, including "The Archer," a self-reflective love song that teased Swift's folk sensibilities through storybook lyrics and ambient textures. 

Swift’s ballads are key in understanding the full essence of folklore. They’ve regularly marked standout moments on each of her albums, both thanks to her poignant vulnerability and rich tone. Fearless standout "White Horse" earned Swift two GRAMMYs in 2009; Red's painstaking "All Too Well" was an instant fan favorite; 1989's "This Love" and Reputation's "New Years Day" provided tenderness amid otherwise synth-heavy sounds.

The raw emotion she puts into her downtempo songs comes alive on folklore, introducing a new wave of neo-classical sonics that elevate her fanciful penmanship to an ethereal level. Whether or not Swifties saw a full indie-pop record coming—at least not yet—the shift isn't all that surprising. Folklore’s romanticized lyrics and relatively lo-fi production are arguably what many fans have been patiently waiting on.

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Lyrically, the super-personal nature of Swift’s music has always captivated fans and naysayers alike; diehards and critics dissected each of her albums for its real-life subjects and hidden meanings. While she played into those conspiracies at the time—whether she was revealing names in titles like "Hey Stephen" and "Dear John" or scathing the other girl on "Better Than Revenge"—even Swift herself admits that her teenage method had an expiration date. 

"There was a point that I got to as a writer who only wrote very diaristic songs that [it] felt unsustainable for my future moving forward," she told Apple Music's Zane Lowe in December of 2020. "It felt like too hot of a microscope ... On my bad days, I would feel like I was loading a cannon of clickbait when that's not what I want for my life."

That realization is what helped make folklore so memorable: Swift stripped away the drama to let her artful storytelling shine. Sure, there are occasional callbacks to personal happenings ("invisible string" references sending her exes baby gifts and "mad woman" alludes to her legal battle with Scott Borchetta and Scooter Braun). Still, she largely shies away from her autobiographical narratives to make way for her imagination.

"I found myself not only writing my own stories, but also writing about or from the perspective of people I've never met, people I've known, or those I wish I hadn't," Swift wrote in a letter to fans on social media the day folklore arrived. "The lines between fantasy and reality blur and the boundaries between truth and fiction become almost indiscernible."

folklore might be her first full project dedicated to creating characters and projecting storylines, but Swift has shown a knack for fantasy from the start. Tracks like "Mary's Song (Oh My My)" on her self-titled debut and "Starlight" on Red saw Swift craft stories for real-life muses ("Mary's Song" was inspired by an old couple who lived next door to Swift in her childhood; "Starlight" was sparked from seeing a picture of Ethel and Bobby Kennedy as teens). Even when songs did pertain to her real life, Swift often had a way of flipping memories into whimsical metaphors, like the clever clap-back to a critic on Speak Now's "Mean" or the rebound relationship in Reputation's "Getaway Car."

To think that we wouldn't have folklore without a pandemic is almost surreal; it's already become such a fundamental piece of Swift’s artistic puzzle. There was no telling what may have come after the glittering "love letter to love itself” that was Lover, but it seems isolation made the singer rethink any plans she may have had. 

"I just thought there are no rules anymore because I used to put all these parameters on myself, like, 'How will this song sound in a stadium? How will this song sound on radio?' If you take away all the parameters, what do you make?" she told Paul McCartney in a November Rolling Stone interview. "And I guess the answer is folklore."

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Even if she hasn’t been making indie music herself, Swift has shown an affinity for the genre over the years through curated digital playlists. Those included four songs by The National including "Dark Side of the Gym," which she references on folklore single "betty," and "8 (Circle)" by Bon Iver, Swift's collaborator on folklore's gut-wrenching "exile" as well as evermore’s title track. (“Exile” is one of folklore’s GRAMMY-nominated cuts, up for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance.)

The National’s guitarist Aaron Dessner co-wrote nine and produced 11 of folklore's 16 tracks, soundtracking Swift's imaginative tales with sweeping orchestration and delicate piano. Their partnership started with "cardigan," a melancholy take on teenage love that's up for Best Pop Solo Performance and the coveted Song of the Year. The team-up was a dream come true for Swift, a self-proclaimed National superfan and a career highlight for Dessner, who shared in an Instagram post about folklore that he's "rarely been so inspired by someone." He sees the album as a pivotal moment for both Swift's career and pop music.

"Taylor has opened the door for artists to not feel pressure to have 'the bop,'" Dessner shared with Billboard in September. "To make the record that she made, while running against what is programmed in radio at the highest levels of pop music—she has kind of made an anti-pop record. And to have it be one of the most, if not the most, successful commercial releases of the year that throws the playbook out.

"I hope it gives other artists, especially lesser-known or more independent artists, a chance at the mainstream," he continued. "Maybe radio will realize that music doesn't have to sound as pushed as it has. Nobody was trying to design anything to be a hit. Obviously, Taylor has the privilege of already having a very large and dedicated audience, but I do feel like it's having a resonance beyond that."

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Swift's other primary folklore collaborator was Jack Antonoff. He has been her right-hand man since they first paired up on 2013's promotional single "Sweeter Than Fiction" (Swift referred to him as "musical family" in her folklore announcement). Even after years of creating stadium-ready pop smashes, Antonoff said in his own folklore Instagram post, "I've never heard Taylor sing better in my life / write better."

As Swift recognizes herself, folklore ushered in a new way of thinking for the superstar that not only brings out her best, but sets a promising precedent for what's to come. "What I felt after we put out folklore was, 'Oh wow, people are into this too, this thing that feels really good for my life and my creativity,'" Swift added in her interview with Lowe. "I saw a lane for my future that was a real breakthrough moment of excitement and happiness."

Her enthusiasm is tangible on both folklore and evermore. Dubbed folklore’s sister record, evermore further expands Swift’s newfound mystical atmosphere. Much to the delight of many Swifties, the follow-up also calls back to her country beginnings on tracks like the HAIM-assisted “no body, no crime,” as well as her pop expertise on more uptempo cuts like “long story short.”

Together, the albums are a momentous reminder that Swift is a singer/songwriter first. Her wordcraft is some of the most alluring of her generation, and that’s never been lost on her music, regardless of the genre she’s exploring. But now that Swift also feels she's at her best, it’s evident folklore was just the beginning of Taylor Swift in her finest form.

Explore This Year's Album Of The Year Nominees | 2021 GRAMMYs

How The 2024 GRAMMYs Saw The Return Of Music Heroes & Birthed New Icons
Victoria Monét backstage at the 2024 GRAMMYs.

Photo: Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for The Recording Academy

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How The 2024 GRAMMYs Saw The Return Of Music Heroes & Birthed New Icons

Between an emotional first-time performance from Joni Mitchell and a slew of major first-time winners like Karol G and Victoria Monét, the 2024 GRAMMYs were unforgettably special. Revisit all of the ways both legends and rising stars were honored.

GRAMMYs/Feb 9, 2024 - 09:02 pm

After Dua Lipa kicked off the 2024 GRAMMYs with an awe-inspiring medley of her two new songs, country star Luke Combs followed with a performance that spawned one of the most memorable moments of the night — and one that exemplified the magic of the 66th GRAMMY Awards.

Combs was joined by Tracy Chapman, whose return to the stage marked her first public performance in 15 years. The two teamed up for her GRAMMY-winning hit "Fast Car," which earned another GRAMMY nomination this year thanks to Combs' true-to-form cover that was up for Best Country Solo Performance. The audience went wild upon seeing a resplendent, smiling Chapman strum her guitar, and it was evident that Combs felt the same excitement singing along beside her.

Chapman and Combs' duet was a powerful display of what the 2024 GRAMMYs offered: veteran musicians being honored and new stars being born.

Another celebrated musician who made a triumphant return was Joni Mitchell. Though the folk icon had won 10 GRAMMYs to date — including one for Best Folk Album at this year's Premiere Ceremony — she had never performed on the GRAMMYs stage until the 2024 GRAMMYs. Backed by a band that included Brandi Carlile, Allison Russell, Blake Mills, Jacob Collier, and other accomplished musicians, the 80-year-old singer/songwriter delivered a stirring (and tear-inducing) rendition of her classic song "Both Sides Now," singing from an ornate chair that added an element of regality.

Later in the show, Billy Joel, the legendary rock star who began his GRAMMY career in 1979 when "Just the Way You Are" won Record and Song Of The Year, used the evening to publicly debut his first single in 17 years, "Turn the Lights Back On." (He also closed out the show with his 1980 classic, "You May Be Right.") It was the latest event in Joel's long history at the show; past performances range from a 1994 rendition of "River of Dreams" to a 2022 duet of "New York State of Mind" with Tony Bennett. The crooner, who died in 2023, was featured in the telecast's In Memoriam section, where Stevie Wonder dueted with archival footage of Bennett. And Annie Lennox, currently in semi-retirement, paid tribute to Sinéad O'Connor, singing "Nothing Compares 2 You" and calling for peace.

Career-peak stars also furthered their own legends, none more so than Taylor Swift. The pop star made history at the 2024 GRAMMYs, claiming the record for most Album Of The Year wins by a single artist. The historic moment also marked another icon's return, as Celine Dion made an ovation-prompting surprise appearance to present the award. (Earlier in the night, Swift also won Best Pop Vocal Album for Midnights, announcing a new album in her acceptance speech. To date, Swift has 14 GRAMMYs and 52 nominations.)

24-time GRAMMY winner Jay-Z expanded his dominance by taking home the Dr. Dre Global Impact Award, which he accepted alongside daughter Blue Ivy. And just before Miley Cyrus took the stage to perform "Flowers," the smash single helped the pop star earn her first-ever GRAMMY, which also later nabbed Record Of The Year.

Alongside the longtime and current legends, brand-new talents emerged as well. Victoria Monét took home two GRAMMYs before triumphing in the Best New Artist category, delivering a tearful speech in which she looked back on 15 years working her way up through the industry. Last year's Best New Artist winner, Samara Joy, continued to show her promise in the jazz world, as she won Best Jazz Performance for "Tight"; she's now 3 for 3, after also taking home Best Jazz Vocal Album for Linger Awhile last year.

First-time nominee Tyla became a first-time winner — and surprised everyone, including herself — when the South African starlet won the first-ever Best African Music Performance GRAMMY for her hit "Water." boygenius, Karol G and Lainey Wilson were among the many other first-time GRAMMY winners that capped off major years with a golden gramophone (or three, in boygenius' case).

All throughout GRAMMY Week 2024, rising and emerging artists were even more of a theme in the lead-up to the show. GRAMMY House 2024 hosted performances from future stars, including Teezo Touchdown and Tiana Major9 at the Beats and Blooms Emerging Artist Showcase and Blaqbonez and Romy at the #GRAMMYsNextGen Party.

Gatherings such as A Celebration of Women in the Mix, Academy Proud: Celebrating LGBTQIA+ Voices, and the Growing Wild Independent Music Community Panel showcased traditionally marginalized voices and communities, while Halle Bailey delivered a GRAMMY U Masterclass for aspiring artists. And Clive Davis hosted his Pre-2024 GRAMMYs Gala, where stars new and old mingled ahead of the main event. 

From established, veteran artists to aspiring up-and-comers, the 2024 GRAMMYs were a night of gold and glory that honored the breadth of talent and creativity throughout the music industry, perfectly exemplifying the Recording Academy's goal to "honor music's past while investing in its future." If this year's proceedings were any indication, the future of the music industry is bright indeed. 

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

Overheard Backstage At The 2024 GRAMMYs: What Jack Antonoff, Laufey & Other GRAMMY Winners Said
Jacob Collier, Sara Gazarek, Johnaye Kendrick, Amanda Taylor, and Erin Bentlage, winners of the "Best Arrangement, Instruments and Vocals" for "In The Wee Small Hours Of The Morning" pose in the press room during the 66th GRAMMY Awards.

Photo: Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for The Recording Academy

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Overheard Backstage At The 2024 GRAMMYs: What Jack Antonoff, Laufey & Other GRAMMY Winners Said

Get an exclusive glimpse inside the 66th GRAMMY Awards press room, where Jacob Collier, ​​Natalia Lafourcade, Brandy Clark and others spoke with GRAMMY U about their big wins on Music's Biggest Night.

GRAMMYs/Feb 7, 2024 - 05:38 pm

From Miley Cyrus winning her first GRAMMY to Billy Joel’s comeback performance after 30 years, the 2024 GRAMMYs were filled with a range of special moments at Crypto.com Arena.

Backstage at the Recording Academy’s media center and press room, GRAMMY U spoke with several GRAMMY winners just as they stepped off the stage. Each spoke about the vital role of collaboration in the studio, and the role they played in their GRAMMY-winning Categories. 

Read on for insights from Jack Antonoff (Album Of The Year and Producer Of The Year, Non-Classical), Laufey (Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album), Jacob Collier (Best Arrangement, Instruments and Vocals), Natalia Lafourcade (Best Latin Rock or Alternative Album ), and Brandy Clark (Best Americana Performance).

Jack Antonoff Can Truly Fly Free With A Collaborator

The 10-time GRAMMY winner took home several golden gramophones on Feb. 4, including the prestigious Album Of The Year for Taylor Swift’s Midnights as well as Producer Of The Year, Non-Classical for the third consecutive year. 

Antonoff told GRAMMY.com that, as a producer, collaboration is simply "everything."

"The visual I have is a balloon. When it's your words, lyrics, and your life, you have to be able to fly free without being scared of drifting away," Antonoff continues. "I see the producer holding that string, and I know both ends." 

When he’s not creating hits for other artists, Antonoff delves into his own artistry as the founder and lead singer of indie rock band Bleachers, known for their hit single "I Wanna Get Better."

"When I’m making the Bleachers records, I’ll have these crazy thoughts and then [producer] Patrik Berger will ground me in it. I think it’s really about trust," Antonoff reflects.

Laufey Won In The Same Category As Many Idols

Laufey first wowed audiences with a live performance of her hit song "From the Start" at the 66th GRAMMY Awards Premiere Ceremony. Later in the day, the 24-year-old won her first GRAMMY on Sunday in the Category of Traditional Pop Vocal Album for Bewitched

"This category means so much to me, so many of my inspirations and idols have won in this category before," she tells GRAMMY.com. 

Read more: With 'Bewitched,' Icelandic Singer Laufey Is Leaving Jazz Neophytes Spellbound

Laufey transcends the boundaries of genre, blending jazz and pop into her original music. With 18 million likes on TikTok and 3 million monthly listeners on Spotify, the Icelandic singer/songwriter effused awe an gratitude. 

"It feels so cool to make the kind of music I make today and still get recognized for it," she shares. 

Jacob Collier Shared His Imnprovisiation Techniques

Collier won his sixth GRAMMY Award this year, taking home the golden gramophone for Best Arrangement, Instruments and Vocals for his feature on "In the Wee Small Hours of the Morning" by vocal supergroup Säje. The first-time GRAMMY-winning vocal group is composed of Sara Gazarek, Amanda Taylor, Johnaye Kendrick, and Erin Bentlage. 

The multi-instrumentalist provided insight into the making of "In the Wee Hours of the Morning," revealing that this collaboration began with an improvisation Collier created around the song, which was later decorated with Säje’s harmonies. 

"The best types of collaborations reveal parts of oneself that you wouldn’t otherwise have access to, and I think the amazing thing about [Säje] is that the four [of them] brought colors out of me that were new," Collier says. 

"I feel so lucky to have been clothed by these four voices, it feels really wonderful," he says. 

Natalia Lafourcade Realized Her Own Importance

Known for infusing a variety of Latin genres with elements of folk, jazz, and alternative music, Natalia Lafourcade picked up her fourth GRAMMY win for Best Latin Rock or Alternative Album with De Todas Las Flores.

"It took seven years for me to realize I need to write my own music again," Lafourcade says. "This album has [helped me realize] the importance of my inner garden, my creative universe." 

Read more: Catching Up With Natalia Lafourcade: How Togetherness, Improvisation & The Element Of Surprise Led To Her Most Exquisite Album

The Mexican singer/songwriter also served as a presenter at the Premiere Ceremony, presenting in Categories such as Best Music Video and Best Song Written for Visual Media. Previously, Lafourcade won for Best Latin Rock or Alternative Album at the 58th GRAMMY Awards for Hasta La Raíz, and discussed the importance of reclaiming her sound in this category. 

"Having the producers, musicians, and my beautiful team has been an incredible experience. It means a lot," she says. 

Brandy Clark Loved Working With Brandi Carlile

After 17 nominations, Brandy Clark landed her first GRAMMY win in the category of Americana Performance. At the Premiere Ceremony, Clark performed a solo acoustic rendition of "Dear Insecurity," which features 10-time GRAMMY winner Brandi Carlile

Previous nominations for the Washington native include Best Country Song and Best Country Solo Performance. 

"The work I did with Brandi Carlile was really important for me. Seventeen nominations, first GRAMMY win — I’m mind blown," Clark says.

Clark's collaboration with Carlile is a key part of her support system, and she continues to push the boundaries of artistic expression — especially when it comes to her love for country music.

10 Must-See Moments From The 2024 GRAMMYs

10 Acceptance Speeches That Made Us Laugh, Cry, & Smile At The 2024 GRAMMYs
Killer Mike accepts the GRAMMY for Best Rap Song for "Scientists & Engineers" at the 2024 GRAMMYs,

Photo: Amy Sussman/Getty Images

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10 Acceptance Speeches That Made Us Laugh, Cry, & Smile At The 2024 GRAMMYs

From Taylor Swift's record-shattering Album Of The Year win, to Killer Mike and boygenius category sweeps, these are the emotional GRAMMY winning moments that made up Music's Biggest Night.

GRAMMYs/Feb 6, 2024 - 11:22 pm

Glitz, glamor, and great performances from legendary musicians are only part of what make the GRAMMYs Music’s Biggest Night. It’s also an occasion to honor the music industry’s best and brightest, highlight their greatest achievements from the past year, and watch them soak up the glory. 

Some of the night’s biggest moments came when artists accepted their GRAMMY trophies, from Taylor Swift announcing her next album to teary-eyed moments from SZA and Best New Artist Victoria Monét. Here are a few of our favorite acceptance speeches from the 2024 GRAMMYs. 

Killer Mike Sweeps With Three GRAMMYs In A Row

Atlanta rapper Killer Mike had already given a moving speech upon winning Best Rap Performance for “Scientists & Engineers,” saying “I want to thank everyone who dares to believe that art can change the world.” But his third and final win, Best Rap Album for Michael, sent him into another dimension: “It’s a sweep! Atlanta, it’s a sweep!” 

Tyla Was Shocked To Win Best African Performance

Although her hit song “Water” has dominated the charts, even Tyla was caught off guard by her Best African Music Performance win – the first ever awarded in this category – exclaiming “What the heck?!” The South African star continued "This is crazy, I never thought I’d say I won a GRAMMY at 22 years old."

Boygenius Sweep The Rock Categories

Boygenius already had something to celebrate when Phoebe Bridgers won a GRAMMY for her collab with SZA. They went on to win three categories during the Premiere Ceremony – Best Rock Song, Best Rock Performance, and Best Rock Album – enabling each member of the trio to give a separate speech. “We were all delusional enough as kids to think this might happen someday,” Lucy Dacus said. 

Miley Cyrus Was A Class Act

Accepting the prize for Best Pop Solo Performance for “Flowers,” Miley Cyrus took to the stage to strike a pose with presenter Mariah Carey – “This M.C. is gonna stand by this M.C.” — before launching into a story about a boy who tries desperately to catch a butterfly, before nabbing one when they least expect it. “This song ‘Flowers’ is my butterfly,” she concluded. 

SZA Runs From Backstage To Accept Award

Changing backstage after her GRAMMYs performance, SZA was caught off guard when “Snooze” won Best R&B Song. She embraced friend and presenter Lizzo before giving an emotional, funny speech. “I can’t believe this is happening, and it feels very fake,” she said. “I love you, I’m not an attractive cryer, have a good evening.” 

Taylor Swift Announces New Album

When the pop mega-star took to the stage to accept her lucky 13th overall GRAMMY for Best Pop Vocal Album (Midnights), she decided to use the moment to give her fans the ultimate gift, announcing her 11th studio album, The Tortured Poets Department, will release on April 19. “I want to say thank you by telling you a secret that I've been keeping from you for the past two years,” she said. 

Billie Eilish Didn’t Know What To Say

After delivering a lovely performance of her Barbie movie ballad “What Was I Made For?,” Billie Eilish wasn’t exactly at a loss for words when the track won Song of the Year. The words that came out of her mouth were a bit less than rehearsed, however: “Whoa, whoops, yikes, whoa my goodness! Damn, that’s stupid guys!” she said. “I don’t even know what to say, I’m shocked out of my balls.” 

Victoria Monét Delivers Tearful, Eloquent Speech

Through tears of joy, Best New Artist winner Victoria Monét gave a speech worthy of an artist who spent years writing for others before striking out on her own. “This award was a 15-year pursuit,” she said, going on to compare herself to a plant growing in 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.” 

Miley Cyrus Makes An Even Wilder Record of the Year Speech

Cyrus returned to the stage twice after her first GRAMMY win, first to perform her award-winning song, and then once more to accept a second golden gramophone for Record of the Year. “This award is amazing, but I really hope it doesn’t change anything, because my life was beautiful yesterday,” she said. Then she ended the speech by saying “I don’t think I’ve forgotten anyone, but I might’ve forgotten underwear!”

Taylor Swift’s Record-Shattering Album of the Year

Lightning struck twice for Taylor Swift, as the evening ended with her taking home a record-breaking fourth GRAMMY for Album of the Year (Midnights), more than any other artist in GRAMMY history. Flanked by producer Jack Antonoff and friend and collaborator Lana Del Rey, she gave a speech that highlighted her passion for music-making, saying  “For me the award is the work. All I wanna do is keep being able to do this. I love it so much, it makes me so happy." As happy as Swift was, her fans probably left even happier. 

9 Ways Women Dominated The 2024 GRAMMYs

13 Moments From The 2024 GRAMMYs You Might Have Missed
Flavor Flav and Miley Cyrus attend the 66th GRAMMY Awards at Crypto.com Arena on February 04, 2024 in Los Angeles, California.

PHOTO: Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for The Recording Academy

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13 Moments From The 2024 GRAMMYs You Might Have Missed

From Killer Mike's trifecta to excitement about Beyoncé, the 66th GRAMMY Awards candid moments between music’s biggest stars.

GRAMMYs/Feb 6, 2024 - 06:35 pm

The 2024 GRAMMYs have come and gone, but viewers haven’t stopped talking about their favorite highlights from the show. But between backstage, the red carpet and on the show floor itself, there were plenty of candid moments between music’s biggest stars that rival the biggest performances. 

The internet has already taken off running with some of the night’s best underseen GRAMMY moments —  from Miley Cyrus’ red carpet randomness to Flavor Flav linking up with boygenius and Dua Lipa bringing her dad as her date. Here are a few of our favorite GRAMMY moments you might have missed.

Taylor Swift & Jack Antonoff Linked Up With Boygenius Backstage

Taylor Swift and Jack Antonoff with boygenius backstage 2024 GRAMMYs

The boys were big at the GRAMMYs, winning three trophies, and fellow winners Taylor Swift and Jack Antonoff had to join in on the fun! The group posed with their golden gramophones backstage. 

…And So Did Flavor Flav?

The Public Enemy rapper posed for photos with boygenius, writing "Getting educated on the genius of Boy Genius." He wasn’t the only one coming to class — Troye Sivan snuck in for the photo op too.

Miley's iPhone Confusion On the Red Carpet

"iPhones? What the hell?!" Before winning two GRAMMYs later that night, including Record of the Year, Miley’s surprise at cell phone photographers on the red carpet immediately went viral. What can we say, she’s just being Miley! 

Noah Kahan Brought His Mom

How sweet is Noah Kahan?The Best New Artist nominee decided to bring his own mother as his GRAMMYs date. If there was a GRAMMY for best son, he’d take it home easily. 

Tyla’s Parents Almost Upstaged Her

Kahan wasn’t the only GRAMMY nominee with parents in tow. After 22-year-old Tyla won Best African Performance, she told journalists backstage "My father already told me that it’s going in his room." Now that’s one proud papa! 

Killer Mike Celebrates A GRAMMY Trifecta

"Atlanta it’s a sweep! Atlanta it’s a sweep!!" Killer Mike couldn’t help but hide his excitement as he collected not one, not two, but three GRAMMYs during the Premiere Ceremony. 

Taylor Swift Fixes Lana Del Rey’s Hair On Red Carpet

Hours before paying tribute to her friend and collaborator in her Album Of The Year acceptance speech, Taylor Swift wanted to make sure Lana Del Rey’s beautiful black ensemble was just right on the red carpet. Giving Goth Loretta Lynn realness is easier with a bestie by your side!  

Ice Spice Meets Jay-Z And Beyoncé

She’s really In Ha Mood! The pop-rap princess and Best New Artist nominee was totally fangirling upon meeting Queen Bey herself, resplendent in a white wig and cowboy hat. A dream come true! 

Terry Crews And Jon Batiste Chop It Up

A late night pro and a former football star may seem like an odd couple, but Jon Batiste and actor Terry Crews got along pretty well. Batiste, a previous Album Of The Year winner and a nominee this year, also performed during the ceremony

Jay-Z Sips Cognac From His Global Impact Award

So much for a gold sippy cup! With Blue Ivy nearly grown, Jay-Z was able to keep his Dr. Dre Global Impact Award all to himself. He was seen sipping D’Ussé from the special black gramophone in celebration. 

Joni Mitchell Wins Best Folk Album

Before giving an astonishing, first-ever GRAMMYs performance during the GRAMMYs TV ceremony, Joni Mitchell collected a golden gramophone of her own, winning Best Folk Album during the Premiere Ceremony — 50 years after her first win. 

Lil Uzi Vert Hangs With Jay And Bey

As music’s most famous couple attempted to make a stylish exit, Lil Uzi Vert decided to join them! The Philly rapper could be seen sauntering between Hov and daughter Blue Ivy Carter as the Carter-Knowles clan left the arena. 

Celine Dion Makes A Bold Entrance Backstage

Even for a night filled with icons, none were so legendary as Celine Dion. The singer looked resplendent as she arrived backstage ahead of presenting the GRAMMY for Album Of The Year

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