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Grammys 2011: Lady Antebellum and Lady Gaga dominate

Lady Antebellum

Story by Jack Foley

IT proved to be a very Lady like affair at the US Grammys on Sunday (February 13, 2011), with country trio Lady Antebellm and pop star Lady Gaga dominating the main awards.

Lady Antebellum emerged as the night’s biggest winners, landing five prizes, including song of the year and record of the year for their hit Need You Now.

They also won best country song, best country performance by duo/group [again for Need You Now] and best country album.

Singer Hillary Scott told the Grammy audience: “We really wanted to make Nashville and the country music community proud tonight. I hope that they feel that way and I think it just shows that country music is relevant and it’s relatable. I just hope they think we’re flying the flag right.”

Lady Gaga, meanwhile, scooped three awards, including best pop vocal album for The Fame Monster.

In typically scene-stealing fashion, Lady Gaga ensured she grabbed the headlines by being carried down the Los Angeles event’s red carpet in a giant egg before emerging from it to perform her new single Born This Way.

She also thanked Whitney Houston as well as her fans during her acceptance speech, saying: “I want to thank Whitney Houston because when I wrote Born This Way, I imagined [she was] singing it.”

Further multiple award winners included rapper Jay-Z and soul star John Legend, who also picked up three awards apiece.

Jay-Z’s haul included two trophies for Empire State of Mind, his duet with Alicia Keys, while Legend was rewarded for his collaboration with hip-hop group The Roots.

Another rapper Eminem, who had led the field going into the ceremony with 10 nominations, went homr with just two awards – best rap album for Recovery and best rap solo performance for Not Afraid.

He had been tipped to win best album, but that award went to Canadian rockers Arcade Fire for their third studio album, The Suburbs – who then promptly ‘hijacked’ the stage to perform Ready to Start.

And there was another shock n the best new artist category, where pop heart-throb Justin Bieber unexpectedly lost out to singer and bassist Esperanza Spalding.

Spalding looked visibly overcome as she became the first jazz artist to be named best new artist.

And she commented: “I take this honour to heart so sincerely and I will do my damndest to make a whole lot of great music for all of you.”

British success

There were some notable triumphs for British music talent on the night as well, with veteran guitarist Jeff Beck landing two awards from seven nominations – for best pop instrumental performance and best rock instrumental performance.

Sir Paul McCartney, who was attending the BAFTA ceremony in London, won best solo rock vocal performance for his live album Good Evening New York City, while a Beatles box set won best historical album.

And rock band Muse took the best rock album for The Resistance, beating off competition from veterans Neil Young, Pearl Jam, Tom Petty and Jeff Beck.

Frontman Matt Bellamy thanked his nameless “pregnant girlfriend” [actress Kate Hudson] as part of his acceptance speech.

The band also performed at the ceremony.

Synth-pop duo La Roux, meanwhile, won best electronic/dance album, Iron Maiden took the prize for best metal performance and Sade won for best R&B performance by a duo or group with vocals.

The best of the rest

Despite being beaten by Muse to the best rock album award, Neil Young got his own back in the best rock song category, where his Angry World also triumphed against tunes by Mumford & Sons, Kings of Leon and the Black Keys.

Rihanna’s Only Girl in The World was named best dance recording and US rock duo The Black Keys picked up best alternative album for their sixth release, Brothers.

Of the performances to note, Rolling Stones legend earned a standing ovation for his debut Grammy performance, during which he delivered a rendition of Everybody Needs Somebody To Love in tribute to the late Solomon Burke.

And Gwyneth Paltrow was another of the night’s live successes when she was joined by a feather-clad Cee Lo Green and some of Jim Henson’s puppets to perform hit single Forget You.

View the main winners at a glance