Does anyone love a surprise more than Beyoncé?
After declining an invitation to perform at Sunday night’s Grammy award show, it seemed as though the singer would skip the event altogether. Though technically she hadn’t written off the possibility of attending, precedent suggested she was going to sit this one out. Beyoncé hasn’t attended the Grammys since 2018.
But in a characteristic move, Beyoncé surprised everyone by showing up to the Grammy’s and then swiftly making history: After winning best R&B performance, best music video, best rap performance, and best rap song, Beyoncé became the most decorated woman Grammy winner of all time, with 28 awards. That puts her just three behind the all-time record, currently held by the late conductor Georg Solti.
In her acceptance speech for best R&B performance, for “Black Parade”—the most-nominated song on Sunday night—Beyoncé said she believes it’s her job to “reflect the times.” The song was released on Juneteenth, and its proceeds go toward BeyGood, a partnership between Beyonce and the NAACP to fund Black-owned small businesses during the pandemic:
“It has been such a difficult time so I wanted to uplift, encourage, and celebrate all of the beautiful Black queens and kings that continue to inspire me and inspire the whole world,” Beyoncé said. “This is so overwhelming. I’ve been working for my whole life, since nine years old, and I can’t believe this happened. This is such a magical night. Thank you so much. I know my daughter is watching, two daughters and my son, y’all are all watching. Congratulations Blue. She won a Grammy tonight. I’m so proud of you, and I’m so honored to be your mommy, all of your mommys. Y’all are my babies. And I’m so proud of y’all. I love you so much, my rock. Enjoy your night. Thank you.”
Helpfully, an account with 47 followers called “Katy Perry’s Grammy”—note that Katy Perry neither attended the Grammys tonight, nor was she nominated for any awards—tweeted that the singer was “only” 27 Grammys away from beating Beyoncé’s new record. Best of luck to her!