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The “superstars” (as host LL Cool J later called them), crowned No. 1 on Billboard‘s 2014 Power 100 list for instantaneously changing “how the industry and fans thought about interacting with music,” kicked off the show with a dramatic performance of their R&B anthem, “Drunk in Love,” off Beyonce‘s self-titled album.
Dressed in Saint Laurent black tights, custom bra, La Perla collar body and Nichole de Carle body suit, complete with wavy wet hair, Beyonce belted out the lyrics to the song — expertly twirling in a chair amid strobe lights for the mid-tempo jam. Beyonce completed her outfit with Stuart Weitzman heels and Jennifer Fisher yellow gold and large dagger earrings.
During two points of Beyonce’s performance, the audio cut out, censoring risque lyrics within the song. And as if on cue, Jay Z — dressed in a classy suit and tie — took the stage for his part in the song. During the audience shots, the unlikeliest person was caught grooving to the beat: former Beatles singer Paul McCartney.
Following the Grammy performance, however, parents blasted Beyonce’s performance as being inappropriate for children. Beyonce’s steamy performance opened the awards show at 8 p.m. PST/EST.
Beyonce seriously? It’s 8:00. That performance was NOT appropriate for children. Thank God mine are in bed. #shameonyou
— Theresa Bailey (@theresabrenelle) January 27, 2014
Melissa Henson, director of grassroots activism and education for conservative watchdog Parents Television Council, told Yahoo Music that there has been a consistent run of “inappropriate material” on awards ceremonies as of late. “When I was a kid, these shows were a big deal, and we could watch them without any fear of inappropriate material,” she said. “But unfortunately I think those days are gone.”
Beyonce and Jay Z’s performance had been speculated before CBS officially confirmed in a brief promo that aired prior to the Jan. 26 telecast that the powerhouse couple would be taking the stage at the Grammys.
Beyonce’s Grammy appearance marks the singer’s first televised performance since the launch of her self-titled fifth album in December. Current sales for Beyonce stand at 1.5 million, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
This marks the second straight year Jay Z has performed at the Grammys. Last year, he dueted with Justin Timberlake for a sepia-tone performance of their The 20/20 Experience single, “Suit & Tie.”
Jay Z won a Grammy for the music video for Justin Timberlake‘s “Suit & Tie,” and was the awards show’s top nominee with nine. Beyonce, meanwhile, was nominated for rap/sung collaboration for her duet with Jay Z, “Part II (On the Run).”
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