Grammy Awards struggle with honoring Houston

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The Grammys did their best to keep a tone that balanced the many moods of the night: The Foo Fighters performed in a tent outside the Staples Center, where the awards were being held, amid a throng of bouncing fans; but moments earlier, Alicia Keys and Bonnie Raitt paid tribute to Etta James, the legend who died last month.

There was also a tribute to the recently reunited Beach Boys that featured Maroon 5, Foster the People and Mike Love, Al Jardine and Brian Wilson, the three remaining members of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame band, all pitch-perfect as they brought the groups California rock sound and harmonies back to life.

And in a noteworthy occurrence, Rihanna and Brown appeared at the same awards show since his attack on her three years ago _ also on the eve of the Grammys _ forced both to drop out of the show and led to an assault conviction for Brown. It almost derailed his career, but 2011 marked a huge comeback, and he was rewarded with a Grammy performance slot on Sunday night’s CBS broadcast that focused more on his stunning dance moves than his singing (he appeared to lip-synch his entire performance).

Rihanna, who performed with Coldplay later, is a multiple nominee and up for album of the year. She is competing with Adele’s “21,” Mars‘ “Doo-Woops & Hooligans,” the Foo Fighters’ “Wasting Light” and Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way.”

Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep” is nominated for record and song of the year. Both categories also include Bon Iver’s “Holocene,” Mumford & Sons “The Cave,” and Mars‘ “Grenade.” Katy Perry’s “Firework” is up for record of the year but instead of that song, West’s “All of the Lights” takes the remaining position in the song of the year category.

The ceremony also marks the first since a major overhaul of the categories last year: They were trimmed from 109 to 78.

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Online: http://www.grammys.com

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Nekesa Mumbi Moody is the AP’s Music Editor. Follow her at http://www.twitter.com/nekesamumbi

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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