Paris Jackson Introduces The Weeknd’s Grammys 2017 Performance, Gives Subtle Nod to Late Dad Michael Jackson

Hey, Dad! Paris Jackson gave a subtle nod to her late father, Michael Jackson, while introducing The Weeknd and Daft Punk’s performance at the 2017 Grammy Awards on Sunday, February 12. Watch her speech above!

“A legend once said that a star can never die, it just turns into a smile and melts back into the cosmic music, the dance of life,” the 18-year-old said on stage at Los Angeles’ Staples Center. “The artist about to take the stage is a shining star whose cosmic style has embraced the very roots of music, from R&B to soul to hip-hop and now pop music. Joined by his genius collaborators and robot friends, Daft Punk, we have here tonight a real Starboy. Ladies and gentlemen, please give a warm welcome to The Weeknd.”

Paris Jackson
Paris Jackson introduces The Weeknd during the 59th Grammy Awards at the Staples Center on Feb. 12, 2017, in Los Angeles. Kevin Winter/Getty Images for NARAS

The Weeknd (born Abel Tesfaye) took the stage with the French electronic duo to perform their collaboration “I Feel It Coming.” Shortly after, Paris’ brother Prince Jackson congratulated his sister on her eloquent speech, writing on Instagram, “So proud of my sister, not only did she address a crowd that big, but she designed a tasteful dress that expresses her individuality and uniqueness and she ROCKED it. Proud of you @parisjackson.”

The Weeknd has been open in the past about how the King of Pop, who died in June 2009 at age 50, has influenced his career and music. In September 2015, he told Billboard that the first time he read the lyrics to Michael’s “Dirty Diana,” which he later covered on his 2011 mixtape Echoes of Silence, “I got emotional — it’s when I first knew I wanted to write songs.”

Many of the Canadian crooner’s hits, including 2015’s “Can’t Feel My Face” and 2016’s “I Feel It Coming,” are clear nods to Michael’s famous pop-disco sound. However, he told the Los Angeles Times last February that he isn’t necessarily trying to imitate his idol.

“Michael, man, that guy was the star. He invented the star. There will never be another Michael,” he told the newspaper. “I want to make it very clear that I’m not trying to be Michael. He’s everything to me, so you’re going to hear it in my music. Off the Wall was the album that inspired me to sing. It helped me find my [voice]. I didn’t understand what songwriting was before Off the Wall. ‘Don’t Stop Till You Get Enough,’ I kept singing that, and I found my falsetto. It wasn’t until Bad when I wanted to be a songwriter.”

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