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Duffy, Kings of Leon Dominate Brit Awards

February 19, 2009 9:18 AM ET

Welsh songstress Duffy was the Plant & Krauss of last night's Brit Awards, winning three trophies at the British Phonographic Industry's annual ceremony that's often likened to the U.S.' Grammys. Duffy took home awards for British Female Solo Artist, British Breakthrough Act and the Mastercard British Album of the Year for her debut Rockferry, which edged out Grammy Album of the Year nominees like Viva La Vida and In Rainbows. (And yes, Mastercard sponsors the award — if you think the Grammys have sold out, think again.)

On the international side of things, Kings of Leon followed up winning their first Grammy by nabbing trophies for both International Group and International Album for Only By the Night, beating out Fleet Foxes, the Killers, AC/DC and MGMT. This year's International Male and Female Solo Artists were Kanye West and Katy Perry. Because this was a British award show, they were some major upsets in certain categories, like British Group, where Elbow beat out Coldplay and Radiohead, and British Male Solo Artist went to the Jam's Paul Weller (We loved his 22 Dreams.)

Among the night's performers were U2 who played "Get On Your Boots" and "Outstanding Contribution to Music" winners the Pet Shop Boys, who played a medley of their hits with guests like Lady GaGa and the Killers' Brandon Flowers. For the full list of BRIT winners, check after the jump.

British Female Solo Artist: Duffy
International Female Solo Artist: Katy Perry
British Breakthrough Act: Duffy
International Group: Kings Of Leon
British Male Solo Artist: Paul Weller
International Album: Kings Of Leon - Only By the Night
British Live Act: Iron Maiden
British Group: Elbow
Critics Choice: Florence And The Machine
International Male Solo Artist: Kanye West
British Single: Girls Aloud - "The Promise"
British Album: Duffy - Rockferry
Outstanding Contribution To Music: Pet Shop Boys
Producer of the Year: Bernard Butler

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Song Stories

“American Girl”

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers | 1976

It turns out that a single with "American" in its title--recorded on the Fourth of July during the nation's Bicentennial, no less--can actually sell better in Britain. Coupled with the Heartbreakers' flair for Byrds jangle and Animals hooks, though, is Tom Petty's native-Florida drawl that keeps this classic grounded at home. Petty dispelled rumors that the song was about a suicidal student, explaining that the inspiration came from when he was 25 and used to salute the highway traffic outside his apartment window. "It sounded like the ocean to me," he recalled. "That was my ocean. My Malibu. Where I heard the waves crash, but it was just the cars going by."

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