Madonna has paid tribute to the “troublesome” artists who are brave enough to be “provocative”.
The 64-year-old singer made a surprise appearance at the Grammy Awards on Sunday (05.02.23) to introduce Sam Smith and Kim Petras’ performance of Unholy and she used her time on stage to celebrate the “rebels” who are happy to “take the heat” as they forge a new path and reassured them that their “fearlessness doesn’t go unnoticed”.
She said: “Are you ready for a little controversy? Come on people, let’s make some noise. Y’all are going to sleep over here.
“So, here’s what I’ve learned after four decades in music — if they call you shocking, scandalous, troublesome, problematic, provocative or dangerous, you’re definitely on to something.
“I’m here to give thanks to all the rebels out there forging a new path and taking the heat for all of it. You guys need to know — all you troublemakers out there — you need to know that your fearlessness doesn’t go unnoticed. You are seen, you are heard; and most of all, you are appreciated.
“So now, speaking of controversy, it gives me great pleasure to introduce two incredibly talented artists who have risen above the noise, the doubt, the critics; into something beautifully unholy. Here are two Grammy Award winners, Sam Smith and Kim Petras.”
Earlier in the evening, Kim had praised the ‘Vogue’ hitmaker when she accepted the Best Pop Duo/Group Performance award for ‘Unholy’ and celebrated her historic win.
Standing next to Sam, Kim said: “Thank you so much, crazy. Sam I love you so much and this song has been an incredible journey for me. Sam has been a big supporter of me for a long time and Sam graciously wanted me to accept the award because I’m the first transgender woman to win this award.
“I just want to thank all the incredible transgender legends before me who kicked the doors open for me so I could be here tonight. Sophie especially, my friend who passed away two years ago, who told me this would happen and always believed in me thank you so much for your inspiration. I adore you and you’re inspirational for everybody.
“Madonna, for fighting for LGBTQ rights. Thank you so much, I don’t think I could be here without Madonna.
“My mother, my mother believed me that I Was a girl and I wouldn’t be here without her and her support.
“Everyone who believed in me to this point, I love you so much, this is a huge moment for me.
“Sam, you’re a true hero and an angel and I love you. Everyone who helped make this song, I love you so much.”