Hip-hop and the Grammys have always had a complicated relationship. It all started when the first award for Best Rap Performance was presented in 1989. When it was announced that it would not be televised, many artists—including eventual winners DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince—boycotted the ceremony. Since then, it’s been a roller coaster ride of controversy. Die hard hip-hop heads always find some problem with the winners, and in recent years it’s been extremely difficult for women to get recognized. However, as the genre turns 50, the Grammys are set to honor its legacy and contributions to music with a special performance. On Tuesday, The Roots’ Questlove announced on Twitter that he has helped curate a big performance honoring hip-hop’s history.
“It’s going to be a special segment on the Grammy telecast this Sunday night honoring hip-hop’s 50th. It’s going to be an absolutely amazing moment with some of the biggest names from the genre coming together to celebrate hip-hop history, its past, its present, its future,” the Oscar winner said. “Hip hop has been a driving force in the music and the culture. It’s had a measurable impact on our culture and our world. I’ve had the great privilege of curating this thing with The Roots and many, many others that are going to join us that night.”
In addition to the big performance, the show will also honor “the life and legacy” of Takeoff during the In Memoriam segment. Per a press release, Maverick City Music will join Quavo for “Without You.”
As previously reported by The Root, 2023 nominees Mary J. Blige, Lizzo and Steve Lacy will perform during the show, while the Blind Boys of Alabama and Best New Artist nominee Samara Joy can be seen on the Premiere Ceremony, which is streaming on Feb. 5 at 12:30 p.m. PT/3:30 p.m. ET.
Trevor Noah hosts The Grammys, airing live Sunday, Feb. 5 at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m.PT on CBS and Paramount+.