Michelle Obama salutes Alicia Keys at the Billboard Music Awards

While you get Michelle Obama to sing your praises, clearly you’ve acquired leveled to the excessive of the music recreation.

That’s what occurred on the 2021 Billboard Music Awards in Las Vegas on Sunday night time time, when the previous first lady launched Alicia Keys in a twentieth anniversary medley of songs from her groundbreaking debut album “Songs in A Minor,” which acquired right here out on June 5, 2001 when the Manhattan-born singer-pianist was merely 19.

Obama recalled listening to Keys’ Grammy-winning No. 1 single for the very first time.

“I keep in mind what it felt wish to really feel like to listen to the tune ‘Fallin’ ” for the primary time.  It was edgy and soulful, modern however raw,” Obama, 57, talked about. This youthful singer was taking us to church and to the symphony and to a candlelight dinner and {{couples}} treatment and everywhere else all in just a bit larger than three minutes. I knew correct then and there that this wouldn’t be the ultimate we’d hear from Alicia Keys, and within the years since she’s amazed us repeatedly in so some methods.”

Obama went on to rejoice Keys for being “not merely an artist. She’s moreover an advocate for ladies and households around the world, a frontrunner on social justice, a partner, a mentor, a mother. However most of all she is herself, always thoughtful, always hopeful, always Alicia. And in bearing her true self, she calls us all to be the an identical in our private lives and for each other.

Then Obama concluded her introduction on a very private discover, telling Keys in her pre-recorded tribute that “you encourage me and my daughters.”

As if that wasn’t already ample of twentieth anniversary second, Keys — resplendent in white, along with a excessive hat that coated her “Songs in A Minor”-era braids — took the stage to sing an ivory-tinkling medley of “Piano & I,” “A Lady’s Price,” “How Come You Don’t Name Me” and naturally “Fallin’” — which proved she had not fallen in any respect as one among the many best R&B artists of her expertise.

And exhausting to think about, she merely turned 40 years outdated in January.

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