Alicia Keys announces new album and 2020 tour dates, opens up about last-minute Kobe Bryant tribute at Grammys
Alicia Keys sat down with Ellen DeGeneres recently to talk about how the emotional Kobe Bryant tribute came together at the 62nd Grammy Awards.
Despite the news of Bryant and his daughter Gianna's deaths coming only a few hours before the live show, Keys managed to come up with a tribute performance for him that was moving and tastefully done. Speaking about it at The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Keys said, “We were all freaking out, because obviously, hearing the news about Kobe and his daughter, was so tragic and none of us can still believe it right now to this day.”
Bryant's death was especially significant to the Grammys as it took place at the Staples Center where he spent his 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers. Keys said, “I think that it was definitely a crazy feeling because literally minutes before, we were going to do something else. And we had to really figure out how could we properly honor him in his house, on this night, and everybody who adores him, and loves him so much and has been inspired by him and felt so devastated at that moment, we couldn’t – we had to properly do that.”
She continued, “I was literally backstage. I put on my meditation music. I was just thinking, and I called some of my closest people that help me really find the truth in the moment. It just so happened Boyz II Men was there already that night, and we wanted to do something special, create just something that felt like it was the right thing. We pulled it together, and it was just beautiful. It was like that magic that happens when it’s necessary.”
Keys and Boyz II Men performed a soulful rendition of 'It’s So Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday' at the Grammy Awards show as an image of Bryant was displayed on the screen above.
Keys was praised for managing to be both entertaining and tasteful in her role as the host of the Grammys.
In other news, Keys recently announced a new album and world tour. 'Alicia' is set to release on March 20, while 'Alicia The World Tour' will see Keys performing in nearly 50 North American and European cities this summer.
The 'Alicia' album is still closely guarded, but you can listen to the three released tracks here or on all major streaming platforms like Apple Music and Spotify. Tickets for 'Alicia The World Tour' are already on sale. For more info on the concert, including dates, venus, and deals on tickets, visit the singer's site.