French DJ duo Daft Punk, teenage Lorde take top Grammys

Mon Jan 27, 2014 1:40am EST
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By Mary Milliken and Piya Sinha-Roy

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Two unconventional acts, French electronic music DJs Daft Punk and New Zealand teen Lorde, took home the top Grammy awards on Sunday in a night that rewarded robots and newcomers, and recognized marriage equality.

In a first for the Grammys or any big U.S. awards show, thirty-three couples, both same-sex and straight, were married by singer Queen Latifah, to the Macklemore & Ryan Lewis gay rights anthem, "Same Love." Madonna emerged in a white suit and cowboy hat to conclude the singing ceremony with "Open Your Heart."

The music industry's glamorous gathering also saw the two surviving Beatles, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, come together for a rare joint performance coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the British group's breakthrough on American television.

The quirky robotic duo, Daft Punk, scored the double win of album of the year for "Random Access Memories," and record of the year with the summer dance hit "Get Lucky," featuring Pharrell Williams and Nile Rodgers.

Rodgers praised the French DJ duo for creating their electronic music album using live music recorded on to analog tape, calling it "a labor of love."

"The fact that they decided to put this much effort into the music and bringing in musicians, they had this incredible vision and they believed they achieved something greater by doing that," Rodgers said backstage.

Formed in the early 1990s by Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo, Daft Punk were pioneers of the electronic dance music phenomenon that has recently swept the U.S. mainstream pop industry.

It was impossible to know what the two masked musicians thought about their big win because they choose not to speak as part of their act.   Continued...

Pop singer Lorde poses backstage with her awards for song of the year for "Royals" and best pop solo performance for "Royals" at the 56th annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, California January 26, 2014. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok