The 2021 Grammy Awards paid tribute to the legendary musicians that died in 2020. During the In Memoriam segment of the show, stars such as Little Richard and Kenny Rogers were honored by Bruno Mars and Lionel Richie. Mars performed Little Richard's hits "Tall Sally" / "Good Golly Miss Molly" with Anderson Paak while Richie performed Rogers' classic song "Lady."
Little Richard died on May 9, 2020, at the age of 87 due to bone cancer. He never won a Grammy but received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1993. One of the most memorable moments in Grammy history was when Little Richard went on a rant while announcing the winner of Best New Artist.
"And the Best New Artist is… Me!" he said which led to the audience laughing. "I have never received nothing. Ya'll ain't never give me no GRAMMY. And I've been singing for years. I am the architect of rock and roll." Along with winning the Lifetime Achievement Award, Little Richard's three songs - "Tutti Frutti," "Lucille" and "Long Tall Sally" - along with his album Here's Little Richard have been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.
Rogers died in March 2020 at the age of 81 from natural causes. He won three Grammy Awards in his career. Rogers became good friends with country music legend Dolly Parton, and she talked about how she met him. "I first became aware of Kenny when he was with a group called First Edition, I heard a song called 'I Just Dropped In to See What Condition My Condition Was In," Parton said on CMT Giants last year. "I thought that was very clever, but I loved the sound of his voice and I kind of followed around to see who he was and got more involved in his music. I loved all of Kenny's songs. I just love his sound." Another notable artist, Brandi Carlile, paid tribute to John Prine who died in April 2020. Carlile performed her rendition of Prine's "I Remember Everything."