Who Will Host the 2019 Grammy Awards? R&B Singer Alicia Keys Named as Stars Gather for Separate Aretha Tribute

GettyImages-1069262286 alicia keys
Alicia Keys, 5-time Grammy Award winner, will host the 61st Grammy Awards on February 10 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, the Recording Academy announced Tuesday. Credit: Mike Coppola/Getty Images for Billboard

The 2019 Grammy Awards are set for February 10, but the stars are already aligning in anticipation of the year's biggest musical gala.

Rhythm and blues singer Alicia Keys has been tabbed the Grammy Awards host this year, giving all-around talent and former host James Corden of The Late Late Show with James Corden a break from his hosting duties the past two years.

Keys, who will be 38 on January 25, brings five Grammy Award-wins and mainstream popularity to the emcee job. The awards take place at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. CBS will broadcast the show.

"I know what it feels like to be on that stage, and I'm going to bring that vibe and energy," Keys said in a press release, as Pitchfork reported. "I'm so excited to be the master of ceremonies on the biggest night in music and celebrate the creativity, power, and magic. I'm especially excited for all the incredible women nominated this year! It's going 'UP' on February 10!"

Keys' 'UP!" motif refers to her excitement in scoring the job and not a reference to the Hollywood women's empowerment moniker, "Time's Up," clarified a Grammy spokesperson.

In a statement, Recording Academy President Neil Portnow had nothing but praise for Keys:

"A dynamic artist with the rare combination of groundbreaking talent and passion for her craft, Alicia Keys is the perfect choice as host for our show."

However, many of the stars the viewers will see on the Grammy Awards already gathered on January 13 at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles to record the Aretha! A Grammy Celebration For The Queen of Soul tribute. The special airs on Sunday, March 10 on CBS.

Among the mega-stars paying homage to the late, great Franklin–who died last August 16–is multi-Grammy winner and musical icon in his own right, Smokey Robinson, as the Recording Academy posted on its website.

Robinson, 79 on February 19 and a 7-time Grammy winner, was added to the mega-star lineup for the Franklin tribute, as announced pre-taping last week. Among his Grammy wins are a 1991 Grammy Legend Award and a 1999 Lifetime Achievement Award–on top of his previous wins for specific songs in 2007, 2000, 1990, 1988 and 1980.

The Recording Academy presents the Lifetime Achievement Award–also called the Special Merit Award–to "performers, who, during their lifetimes, have made creative contributions of outstanding artistic significance to the field of recording."

Joining Robinson in paying tribute to Aretha are Keys, Yolanda Adams, Shirley Caesar, Alessia Cara, Kelly Clarkson, Common, Celine Dion, Jennifer Hudson, John Legend, Patti LaBelle and BeBe Winans, as the academy posted.

Among the 2019 Grammy Award nominees also paying tribute to Franklin in the special are Brandi Carlie, Chloe X Halle, H.E.R., Janelle Monae and SZA.

The Franklin tribute–separate of the Grammy Awards–follows in the footsteps of previous Recording Academy Emmy-winning television specials in partnership with CBS and AEG Ehrlich Ventures, such as the following All-Star Grammy Concerts:

Sinatra 100, Stevie Wonder: Songs In The Key Of Life and Beatles: The Night That Changed America.

Composer, writer and actress, Keys emotes a likable image sure to win over Grammy watchers.

We’re excited to have 15-time GRAMMY winner host this year’s #GRAMMYs! 🙌

Watch Music Biggest Night Feb.10 on @CBS. ✨https://t.co/m0E1VGfRKj

— Recording Academy / GRAMMYs (@RecordingAcad) January 15, 2019

Browse the full list of the 61st #GRAMMYs nominees!https://t.co/3D63kAGFkb

— Recording Academy / GRAMMYs (@RecordingAcad) December 7, 2018