Adele stumbles, swears, then performs stunning tribute to George Michael at Grammys
"Can we please start it again? I’m sorry, I can’t mess this up for him.”
Adele is never one to hide her feelings, or be anything less than honest, and she demonstrated that quality once again at the 2017 Grammy Awards.
She picked up five awards, taking her career total to a huge 15, but the most memorable moment of the night came with her live performance – a tribute to George Michael, who died on Christmas Day last year.
As she began her vocal, accompanied by just single, repeated piano notes, it was clear very early that she’d begun the track – a cover of his 1996 hit Fastlove - in the wrong key, but she persevered until arriving at the first chorus, where she made the smart decision to stop.
She exclaimed, “I know it’s live TV, I’m sorry, I need to start again, I fucked it up, I can’t do it again like last year. I’m sorry for swearing and I’m sorry for starting again. Can we please start it again? I’m sorry, I can’t mess this up for him.”
Fortunately her second attempt saw her land immediately in the right key, and she proceeded to nail a gloriously sweeping and majestic version of the track.
It was – eventually – a fitting tribute to Michael. Take a listen to the final version below.
As she accepted one of her five awards, Adele couldn’t stop fangirling over Beyoncé, who she beat to claim Album of the Year and Song of the Year.
While accepting the final award, for Album of the Year, she said "I can't possibly accept this award. The Lemonade album was just so monumental, Beyoncé. It was so monumental and well thought-out and beautiful and soul-bearing... we appreciate that. All of us artists here adore you. You are our light."
In a Mean Girls moment, she then broke the top off the trophy, to give to Beyoncé, although some outlets reported that it was, in fact, an accident.