It’s not possible to hand out all 84 Grammy Awards during the televised ceremony, so for many years the bulk of the trophies have been given out during the afternoon before the big show at the Premiere Ceremony — often called the “pre-tel.” While the ceremony is not as glamorous or well-attended as the main show, in many ways it is more genuine: Anyone who’s attended has probably experienced the whoops of genuine joy from a winner seated nearby when their name was announced — a refreshing change from the often more choreographed reactions in the main show.
The 2021 Grammys will not have their usual audience and neither will the Premiere, which instead will be streamed live on Grammy.com before the big show on March 14, beginning at 3 p.m. ET/ 12 p.m. PT.
Def Jam Recording artists and multiple Grammy nominee Jhene Aiko will host while performances include Nigerian singer Burna Boy, jazz band Terri Lyne Carrington + Social Science, blues musician Jimmy “Duck” Holmes, classical pianist Igor Levit, Colombian-Canadian singer Lido Pimienta, pop-rock musician Poppy, and singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright.
Kicking off the event will be a tribute performance celebrating the 50th anniversary of the classic Marvin Gaye track “Mercy, Mercy Me (The Ecology)”. The special all-nominee ensemble performance will feature Afro-Peruvian Jazz Orchestra, Thana Alexa, John Beasley, Camilo, Regina Carter, Alexandre Desplat, Bebel Gilberto, Lupita Infante, Sarah Jarosz, Mykal Kilgore, Ledisi, Mariachi Sol de Mexico de Jose Hernandez, PJ Morton, Gregory Porter, Grace Potter, säje, Gustavo Santaolalla (Bajofondo), Anoushka Shankar, and Kamasi Washington.
The 63rd Annual Grammy Awards will be broadcast live following the Premiere Ceremony on CBS and Paramount+ from 8:00 – 11:30 p.m. ET/5:00 – 8:30 p.m. PT.