LOS ANGELES (AP) – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis might shop at thrift shops, but they now have a ton of Grammy gold.
The rap duo won four Grammy Awards so far Sunday, including best new artist and rap album for “The Heist,” beating efforts from Kendrick Lamar, Jay Z, Kanye West and Drake.
“Wow, we’re here on the stage right now,” said Macklemore, thanking fans first, then his fiance and team. “I want to say we made this album without a record label, we made it independently and we appreciate all the support.”
Beyonce kicked off the Grammy Awards with steamy and smoky performance of “Drunk In Love:” She started on a chair and then grinded in a revealing black outfit. Jay Z emerged in a fitted suit to rap his verse, and the couple – parents of little Blue Ivy – held hands and danced together.
Robin Thicke performed with Chicago, singing the group’s songs before going into “Blurred Lines,” which energized the crowd. Thicke finished the performance singing on the floor. Katy Perry sang “Dark Horse” in an eerie forest with fire that mirrored the song’s vibe, and John Legend and Taylor Swift – who whipped her head, and hair, back and forth – played pianos during their slow songs.
Daft Punk, nominated for record and album of the year, were double winners, picking up honors for best dance/electronica album for “Random Access Memories” and pop duo/group performance for “Get Lucky” with Pharrell Williams and Nile Rodgers.
“Dude, on the behalf of the robots . thank you, thank you, thank you,” said Williams, who also won non-classical producer of the year.
Looking to Daft Punk, sporting their signature helmets, Williams said: “They want to thank their families. And of course, the incredible Nile.”
Macklemore & Lewis’ wins, which include best rap song and rap performance for “Thrift Shop,” come after the Grammy rap committee almost ousted the group from its categories. A source told The Associated Press that the rap committee rejected the duo, but that was later overruled by the general Grammy committee. The rap committee felt Macklemore & Lewis should qualify for the pop awards instead because of their massive success on Top 40 radio. The source, who attended the general Grammy meeting, spoke on the condition of anonymity because the meeting was private.
Macklemore & Lewis are also nominated for album and song of the year.
Justin Timberlake, who isn’t up for any of the major awards, won three trophies, including best R&B song for “Pusher Love Girl” and music video for “Suit & Tie,” which also earned Jay Z a Grammy. Jay Z and Timberlake also won best rap/sung collaboration for “Holy Grail.”
“I want to thank God – I mean a little bit for this award – but mostly for all the universe for conspiring and putting that beautiful light of a young lady in my life,” Jay Z said, looking at Beyonce. “I want to tell Blu that, look, ‘Daddy got a gold sippy cup for you.'”
Lorde won her first Grammy for best pop solo performance with the hit “Royals.”
“This is the one thing I didn’t expect the most about tonight, so thank you so much,” said Lorde, who beat out Timberlake, Perry, Sara Bareilles and Bruno Mars.
Lorde performed “Royals” early on during the show, and she was just one of the top females to hit the Grammy stage Sunday: Madonna, Carole King, Pink and Bareilles will also perform at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
The men are showing up, too, and performers include Metallica, Willie Nelson, Dave Grohl and Nine Inch Nails. Ringo Starr and Paul McCartney will sing separately on the telecast.
Like the Macklemore & Lewis, Lamar is nominated for album of the year, marking a high note for hip-hop. Outkast and Lauryn Hill are the only two rap performers to win the coveted album of the year; Hill and Arrested Development are the only rap-based stars to take home best new artist.
A rapper has never won song or record of the year.
Jay Z, keeping up the decade-long Grammy tradition of rappers leading in nominations, was the night’s front-runner with nine.
For top album, Macklemore & Lewis and Lamar’s platinum-selling debuts, “The Heist” and “good kid, m.A.A.d city,” will battle Taylor Swift’s earth-shattering sales force “Red,” Daft Punk’s electronic adventure “Random Access Memories” and the surprise nominee – “The Blessed Unrest” from the piano-playing Sara Bareilles.
Macklemore & Lewis’ “Same Love” is up for song of the year alongside No. 1 Billboard hits, including Perry’s “Roar,” Lorde’s “Royals,” ”Locked Out of Heaven” by Bruno Mars and Pink’s “Just Give Me a Reason,” featuring Nate Ruess of fun. Lorde and Mars’ songs repeat in record of the year, and will be up against Imagine Dragons’ “Radioactive” and two songs that feature Pharrell Williams – Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky” and Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines,” which has sold 6.6 million tracks and is the biggest song of 2013.
Paul McCartney, engineer Bob Ludwig and gospel singer Tye Tribett are double winners.
LL Cool J is hosting the 56th annual awards, airing live on CBS.
AP writers Chris Talbott, Nekesa Mumbi Moody, Mike Cidoni Lennox and Beth Harris contributed to this report.
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