If you ever wondered where one can experience the Ghetto Gastro’s culinary delight of cornbread topped with caviar and crab while also celebrating some of Black music’s most influential trailblazers, look no further than the Black Music Collective’s 2023 Grammy Honors. The event “that felt like a family reunion,” according to one attendee, celebrated Missy Elliott, Dr. Dre, Lil Wayne, and Sylvia Rhone—all of whom were presented the Global Impact Award on behalf of The Recording Academy.
As guests entered the Hollywood Palladium on an oddly warm February night, the first thing noticed are the screens paying homage to some of hip-hop’s greatest moments. Archival footage from interviews with The Notorious B.I.G. and various music videos welcomed guests and set the mood for the night’s festivities. While waiting to enter the main area, cocktail hour was in full effect as legends graciously embraced rising stars as they made their way around the space. At one point, we found ourselves sandwiched between will.i.am and Jimmy Jam, but also spotted the likes of Marsha Ambrosius, Lucky Daye, Ella Mai, Amber Riley, Dawn Richard, D-Nice, Anthony Hamilton, and Tank of Tank and the Bangas—all while sipping on a Grey Goose Passion Drop cocktail.
As the party flowed from the confined hall into the dining area, MC Lyte’s iconic vocal direction wrangled guests into their seats. Harvey Mason Jr., CEO of the Recording Academy, made his opening remarks before passing the mic to BMC Chair, Rico Love. The esteemed record producer honed in on BMC’s message to “not fight for a seat at [their] table,” but to simply claim our “inheritance.”
Swizz Beatz presented Rhone with her flowers to commemorate her four-decade-long career as a music executive who broke glass ceilings and is the reason why acts such as Busta Rhymes and Elliott received such historic career jumpstarts. “She’s one of one. None before. None to come. Show me another Sylvia Rhone and I’ll show you no one,” declared the New York-bred producer. Following her acceptance speech and remarks, Busta Rhymes also celebrated Rhone’s impact on his life before performing a medley of hits including “I Know What You Want” and “Put Your Hands Where My Eyes Can See.”
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.@BustaRhymes performs his verse from @chrisbrown’s “Look at Me Now” with @jermainedupri on stage during the Recording Academy Honors Presented by the Black Music Collective. ? Immediate mic drop moment! pic.twitter.com/VmAa1fCmhO
— heran mamo / ሄራን ማሞ (@heranmamo) February 3, 2023
Ciara and Mona Scott-Young presented Elliott with her award, which ultimately drove the rapper to tears. The “Jump” singer spoke on their spiritual, close-knit sisterhood which the TV producer reflected on their professional history and Elliott’s pioneering contributions to the music industry at large. Despite the Virginia native still making history as a blueprint for many, she remains one of the most humble creatives ever. “People don’t understand that this is a Global Impact Award; it’s not just neighborhood and so it hits different when you stand up here knowing that you’ve been through a lot. I know that Dre and Wayne, none of us just rolled over into success,” said Elliott.
The 51-year-old music veteran was honored with a tribute performance from Chlöe, who sang “One In A Million” and “One Minute Man,” Tweet, who delivered her classic “Oops (Oh My),” and Ciara who sang “One, Two Step” and “Lose Control.”
Global Impact Award!??Celebration with my brother the LEGENDARY STORY TELLER @therulernyc ? pic.twitter.com/FM5RuTjGAh
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— Missy Elliott (@MissyElliott) February 3, 2023
Ahead of Dre’s acceptance speech, Mason Jr. announced that the Global Impact Award would be renamed the Dr. Dre Global Impact Award. “The honor would carry the name of the man who helped pave the way for so many of us, the man who has defined global impact,” he stated. In true West Coast fashion, Snoop Dogg, Kurupt, and Ty Dolla $ign were the performers tapped to pay tribute to the Chronic rapper.
Rounding out the exuberant affair, DJ Khaled presented Wayne with his honor. As chatter among the crowd focused around his tribute set (many predicted it to be Drake and Nicki Minaj). It was 2 Chainz and Tyga who appeared on stage and honored their friend and peer. To further drive home the possibility of Beyoncé winning the Grammys’s Album of the Year category, BMC nudged the sentiment, “Y’all ain’t gotta go home…” as her nominated single “BREAK MY SOUL” blared throughout the venue.
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See the full list of red carpet looks and highlights from the celebration below.