Lizzo presented the first award of the night, happily handing the trophy over to the tearful 26-year-old rapper.
“I don’t want to cry, but first of all, I want to say everybody is amazing. Every artist that was nominated for this award is so amazing,” Megan said after removing her orange mask. “Secondly, I really just want to thank God. Thank you for putting life into my body for me to be able to even be here today.”
The artist also thanked her record label, 300 Entertainment, and management company Roc Nation. To finish her speech, she honored her late mother, Holly.
“She’s not here with me today, but I know she’s here with me in spirit and she always believed I could do it,” the newly minted Grammy winner said.
Although her hit “WAP” wasn’t eligible for any awards this year, Megan, 26, was a fan favorite to receive the prize. The “Hot Girl Summer” rapper released her EP Suga in March 2020, which included the single “Savage.” The song inspired a popular TikTok dance, and Beyoncé later joined the Houston native for the “Savage (Remix).” The pair won Best Rap Performance for the song at the 2021 Grammys.
In 2019, the Grammys made history when they changed the number of artists nominated for the award from five to eight. The tradition has continued since.
It’s important to note that just because someone doesn’t win Best New Artist doesn’t mean they don’t have a long and lustrous career ahead of them. In 2011, jazz artist Esperanza Spalding beat out both Justin Bieber and Drake for the title.
The 19-year-old “Bad Guy” singer was only 17 when her nominations were announced in November 2019, making her the youngest person ever to be nominated in all four top general field categories in the same year. This year, the artist was nominated for four awards: Record of the Year, Song of the Year, Best Pop Solo Performance and Best Song Written for Visual Media.