Hollywood Swings With Post-Grammy Parties For Usher, Kanye, Prince

But the liveliest one didn't have anything to do with the awards.

Hollywood was swinging with post-Grammy Awards parties Sunday night — but as usual, you needed serious connections even to find out where they were, let alone get in.

The big battle for the flyest afterparty was between Kanye West and Usher. Ush's fiesta was held at the Geisha House, a club/restaurant co-owned by Ashton Kutcher. Mr. Entertainment was seen there popping a couple of bottles and greeting people like Wesley Snipes, Kelly Rowland, Nelly and Paris Hilton. The line outside stayed long and strong up until 2 a.m., and inside at times it was too crowded to even dance.

Kanye, on the other hand, had a function in Hollywood to which only a select few were invited — and the only way to get the address was to RSVP. West's party was attended by Ludacris and was divided into three different sections, one of which had a live orchestra playing hip-hop tunes. "They're dope," Kanye was heard saying when he peeped them out. "I might have to work with them."

Prince — who, although he won two awards, didn't attend the ceremony — held a secret soiree at his mansion up in the Hollywood Hills,

 

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but if you didn't have an invite from the Purple one, or a navigational system in your vehicle to find his discretely located pad, there was no point in even trying to go. A tight security check greeted those who did arrive, but once inside, you did see celebs like ... well, it doesn't really matter who Prince invited to his bash, does it? He's going to consume all the eyes in any room he's in anyway.

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Not far from Usher and Kanye's events, guitarist D'Wayne Wiggins hosted a party for multiple winner Alicia Keys. Although the event had only been announced on Friday, the Day After club reached capacity so fast that hundreds were left standing outside for most of the night.

Meanwhile, across town at the Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood, Green Day, Linkin Park, Kid Rock, Amy Lee, Twista, Rob Zombie, Rob Thomas, Jimmy Page, newcomers Louis XIV and Triumph the Insult Comic Dog were among those checking out the Warner Bros. party.

Believe it or not, the guys holding the liveliest function of the night were not nominated for a Grammy — and haven't even put out an album for years. A Tribe Called Quest, who split in 1998 but have done a smattering of shows over the past several months, reunited and reignited at the House of Blues and had fans falling in love with them all over again during their pre-Valentine's Day gig.

Q-Tip, Phife, Jairobi and Ali Shaheed Muhammad went in early, setting the stage for a spiritual night of hip-hop throwback classics like "Oh My God" and "Jazz (We've Got)." Quest then went into what Tip called "obscure" album cuts, but records like "Infamous Date Rape" were rapped along with by the audience as if they were #1 singles.

Even "Steve Biko (Stir It Up)" from 1993's Midnight Marauders had the crowd literally jumping. "Linden Boulevard represent, represent," Phife rapped, "Tribe Called Quest represent, represent/ When the mic is in my hand, I'm never hesitant/ My favorite jam back in the day was 'Eric B. for President.'" Later, Mos Def came out to freestyle, and when Q-Tip said he could do whatever he wanted to do, Mos joined the group as its fifth member, acting as a hypeman.

As their set seemed to be winding down, Q-Tip started beatboxing and asked the crowd "Can I kick it?" — which of course led into the classic song by that name and had the audience jumping yet again.

Tribe and Mos later said their good nights and exited the stage, but no one in the audience moved. The crowd's persistence was rewarded with more sure shots: Tribe and Mos ran back onstage rapping "Scenario," and Busta Rhymes ran out minutes later for his "Rah, rah, like a dungeon dragon" verse.

With the audience's voices sore from yelling, Tribe launched their final assault of "Award Tour" and "Check the Rhime." As the group left the stage, Busta yelled, "Tribe Called Quest, mutha----as!"

As this year's Grammys approach, you can get all the latest news on the show, the scene and the nominees in our Grammy news archive. On the big night, February 8, be sure to tune in to MTV at 7 p.m. for our "All up in the Grammys" preshow. Plus check out videos of the nominees and more right here on mtv.com.