Watch Janelle Monáe deliver the most powerful speech from this year's Grammys.

'We come in peace, but we mean business.'

At this year's Grammys, it wasn't just the awards and performances that people were tuning in to see.

One of viewers' biggest questions had less to do with who'd take home the trophies and more to do with what role the #MeToo and Time's Up movements would play throughout the night.

Themes from the red carpet quickly became clear, with a smattering of artists and guests decked out in all-black (similar to the Golden Globes), while some wore a white rose or a Time's Up pin to stand in solidarity with the workplace anti-harassment campaign. The biggest question: What, if anything, would presenters and performers say from the stage?


Alessia Cara, Zayn Malik, and Miley Cyrus incorporated white roses into their evening outfits. Photos by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images.

Janelle Monáe gave a powerhouse speech that quickly became one of the most talked-about moments of the night.

As she stood on stage to introduce a performance by Kesha, Monáe took the opportunity to make a statement that resonated with the audience and beyond.

"Tonight, I am proud to stand in solidarity as not just an artist but a young woman with my fellow sisters in this room who make up the music industry," said Monáe. "Artists, writers, assistants, publicists, CEOs, producers, engineers, and women from all sectors of the business. We are also daughters, wives, mothers, sisters, and human beings."

GIFs via Grammy.com.

"We come in peace, but we mean business," she continued, gearing up for the night's rallying cry. "And to those who would dare try and silence us, we offer you two words: Time's up. We say time's up for pay inequality, time's up for discrimination, time's up for harassment of any kind, and time's up for the abuse of power."

"Because, you see, it's not just going on in Hollywood, it's not just going on in Washington — it's right here in our industry as well," she added. "And just as we have the power to shape culture, we also have the power to undo the culture that does not serve us well. So let's work together, women and men, as a united music industry, committed to creating more safe work environments, equal pay and access for all women."

It was a speech the world needed to hear and one that should inspire a generation of young girls to understand the power they hold.

Girls and women do have the power to shape culture, and they don't have to put up with a world that refuses to see them as equals.

For years, Kesha was trapped in a sort of artistic purgatory for speaking out about her sexual assault at the hands of one of the industry's top producers. In 2017, she broke free, releasing "Rainbowm," a stunning album from start to finish and a major departure from her early-career radio hits.

Women like Kesha deserve to have their voices heard without fear of retaliation, and it's on the rest of the industry to have her back and the backs of other artists when they're the victims of injustice.

Monáe's speech was capped off by Kesha's raw and moving performance of her survivor's anthem "Praying."

As Kesha took the stage after Monáe's introduction, we saw a champion for survivors of sexual assault emerge to take her well-deserved place as a part of music's biggest night.

Watch Kesha's performance below. Monáe's speech can be found on the official Grammy Awards website.

Most Shared

Mom and blogger Mary Katherine Backstrom regularly shares snippets of life with her two children on her Facebook page. One particularly touching interaction with her daughter is melting hearts and blowing minds due to the three-year-old's wise words about forgiveness.

Even adults struggle with the concept of forgiveness. Entire books have been written about how and why to forgive those who have wronged us, but many still have a hard time getting it. Who would guess that a preschooler could encapsulate what forgiveness means in a handful of innocent words?

Keep Reading Show less
Family

California has a housing crisis. Rent is so astronomical, one San Francisco company is offering bunk bedsfor $1,200 a month; Google even pledged$1 billion to help tackle the issue in the Bay Area. But the person who might fix it for good? Kanye West.

The music mogul first announced his plan to build low-income housing on Twitter late last year.

"We're starting a Yeezy architecture arm called Yeezy home. We're looking for architects and industrial designers who want to make the world better," West tweeted.

Keep Reading Show less
Cities

The U.S. women's soccer team won the Women's World Cup, but the victory is marred by the fact that the team is currently fighting for equal pay. In soccer, the game is won by scoring points, but the fight for equal pay isn't as clearly winnable and the playing field isn't as even.

We live in a world where winning the World Cup is easier than winning equal pay, but co-captain Megan Rapinoe says there's one easy way fans can support the team: Go see games.

Some people argue the men's team deserves to get paid more because they are more successful and earn more money for the United States Soccer Federation. Pay depends on merchandise and ticket sales, and in general, men's sporting events tend to draw a bigger crowd than women's sporting events. It's not about sex, many argue; it's about the fact that people just prefer to see men play.

Keep Reading Show less
Culture

You think you know someone pretty well when you spend years with them, but, as we've seen time and again, that's not always the case. And though many relationships don't get to a point where the producers of "Who the (Bleep) Did I Marry?" start calling every day just to chat, the reality is that sometimes partners will reveal shocking things even after you thought you'd been all shocked out.

That's the case for one woman whose Reddit thread has recently gone viral. The 25-year-old, who's been with her boyfriend for five years, took to a forum for relationship advice to ask if it was normal that her seemingly cool and loving boyfriend recently revealed women shouldn't have a fundamental right. (And no, it's not abortion — although there are a lot of "otherwise best ever boyfriends" out there who want to deny women the rights to bodily autonomy, too.)

Keep Reading Show less
Recommended