“I was in shock. I was writing shit down on my iPhone’s notepad because, all ego aside, I started thinking, ‘Oh, man. If I do win, I have to figure out what I’m going to say and who I’m going to thank.’ ”
“At that point, I didn’t feel like people knew about me. But when you get a nomination, it’s like, ‘Whoa, maybe people do know!’ At the awards, when they announced my name, it took me a second to realize what was happening. Everyone’s screaming and looking, and I’m trying to figure out what to say without screwing up. I dedicated my award to Skrillex, because when nobody was taking the time to look at my material, he was the one to reply to my messages, bring me on tour, connect me to my agents and managers. My whole team is because of him.”
“I was on my bus, making a beat, and hear, ‘You just won a Grammy!’ I got up, screamed and went back to making the beat. The realization was, ‘Now I’ve got to work harder than ever.’ I literally bought a piano to put [my Grammy] on top of. My wife got me a custom red Yamaha, a baby grand.”
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Slipknot’s Corey Taylor (far le...
Slipknot’s Corey Taylor (far left), Best Metal Performance, “Before I Forget,” 2006
“I didn’t even go to the ceremony. I was sitting in a rented apartment working on lyrics for a Stone Sour song when I got the call [that we had won]. The cool thing was that my grandmother got really excited. That’s why I respect [the Grammy] for what it is: Anytime I can make my grandmother happy is a win.”
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Natalia Jimenez, Best Latin Pop Album...
Natalia Jimenez, Best Latin Pop Album (with La Quinta Estacion), Sin Frenos, 2009
“When I found out I won, I was at the airport, arriving in Miami. I started to cry just as I went into immigration. And the immigration agent asked, ‘Why are you crying?’ I told him I’d just won a Grammy! It was a pretty special moment.”
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Jason Mraz, Best Male Pop Vocal (&ldq...
Jason Mraz, Best Male Pop Vocal (“Make It Mine”) and Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals (“Lucky,” featuring Colbie Caillat), 2010
“I’d only been there five minutes and my manager said, ‘You won!’ because it was pretelevised. I was in disbelief. Stevie Wonder was nominated [in best male pop vocal]. I thought, ‘This isn’t right. They just don’t give Grammys to guys like me.’ The victory didn’t sink in until a week later.”
“I had eight friends come into town and we were joking like rock stars, ‘Hookers and blow!’ In reality, we had baby carrots, shots of green juice and were laughing. We didn’t think we were going to get an award; we just had a great excuse to party. Then sitting in the audience, we were like, ‘What if hell froze over and I won?’ I tried to think of something to say that wouldn’t be idiotic. Then the rest happened super-fast. People didn’t know who I was. I just hoped I didn’t fall in the heels I was wearing. I wanted to acknowledge everyone who made this possible, and you can’t. It’s probably what everybody goes through.”
Carlos Vives, Best Traditional Tropic...
Carlos Vives, Best Traditional Tropical Album, Dejame Entrar, 2001
“I was in Bogota. The entire industry, my label at the time, Claudia [my wife] who was my girlfriend at the time, were all on pins and needles. When they told me I won, it was crazy. My life changed in minutes. People started coming over to my house to congratulate me and it became a big party. The next morning at 6 a.m. it was all over the news. I felt like Gabriel Garcia Marquez winning the Nobel prize. And the fact that it was the Recording Academy -- the Americans! -- made it an even bigger deal. I ended the day exhausted. I’ve had several nominations since, but I haven’t won. Tito Puente always beat me!”
Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images
Kerry “Krucial” Brothers,...
Kerry “Krucial” Brothers, Best R&B Song, “No One” by Alicia Keys, 2007
“It was a great feeling to win for a song people didn’t think would fit Alicia’s brand. And it gave me another Grammy to remind my mother why I had been making all that noise growing up.”