Dressed in all black, Alicia Keys took to the Grammy stage Sunday night (February 12) with country crooner Bonnie Raitt and paid tribute to two now-gone legends.
Initially, the two were just set to pay homage to the late, great Etta James, who died just last month at the age of 73 in California. James was a six-time Grammy winner. But Keys, a clear student of Whitney Houston, said, "As we were reminded just yesterday, when a truly great artist leaves us, their legacy lives on."
It was a reference to Houston, the iconic singer who was found dead in her hotel room in Beverly Hills on the eve of the Grammy Awards. Houston, also a six-time Grammy winner, was 48.
Keys and Raitt avoided the obvious James choice — her ubiquitous and well-known hit "At Last" — and instead sang "Sunday Kind of Love," a song featured on the same album as her biggest hit that has since became a classic standard.
"We love you, Etta! We love you, Whitney! We'll never forget you," the two said almost in unison at the conclusion of the performance.
Houston died at the age of 48 on Saturday. Her body was found at the Beverly Hilton, hours before her mentor Clive Davis' annual pre-Grammy bash. She was expected to attend the annual fete. The party went on as planned Saturday night, where Davis, Diddy, Alicia Keys and Tony Bennett all paid tribute to the fallen star. A tribute to Houston is also planned during Sunday's show, led by Jennifer Hudson and Chaka Khan.
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