Grammys 2020: Tyler, the Creator, Charlie Wilson Perform 'Earfquake' - Rolling Stone
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Watch Tyler, the Creator’s Fiery ‘Earfquake,’ ‘New Magic Wand’ at the Grammys

Rapper’s Igor earned a nomination for Best Rap Album

Tyler, the Creator made his debut on the Grammy stage to perform “Earfquake” and “New Magic Wand” alongside the R&B luminaries Charlie Wilson and Boyz II Men.

Wilson and Boyz II Men opened the performance like a barbershop quartet: Wilson sang a typically potent lead vocal while Boyz II Men harmonized prettily to “Earfquake” in the background. But the smooth, soft opening was a feint — moments later, Tyler, the Creator was shrieking into the microphone, moving jerkily to “New Magic Wand.” Soon an army of identically dressed dancers joined the rapper onstage to dance frantically as the set appeared to burst into flames. Tyler, the Creator ended his performance by falling backwards out of sight, seemingly plunging into the fire behind him.

Tyler, the Creator is up for Best Rap Album for Igor at the 2020 Grammys. The rapper has two previous nominations, a 2017 Best Rap Album nod for Flower Boy as well as an Album of the Year recognition in 2012 for his work on Frank Ocean’s Channel Orange.

Igor will face Meek Mill’s Championships, Dreamville’s Revenge of the Dreamers III, 21 Savage’s I Am > I Was and YBN Cordae’s The Lost Boy in the Best Rap Album category at the 62nd Grammy Awards.

Igor, Tyler’s fifth album outside of Odd Future, placed Number Five on Rolling Stone’s 20 Best Hip-Hop Albums of 2019 list and Number 12 on our list of the 50 Best Albums of 2019. The rapper also recently dropped a pair of new singles, “Best Interest” and “Group B.”

Wilson — known for his hits in the Gap Band as well as his solo career — recently released a new single, “Forever Valentine.” Bruno Mars serves as co-writer, co-producer and background singer on the track, which was written when Wilson appeared among the special guests on Mars’ tour in support of 24K Magic.

“We talked about the song’s vibe for a while, put a chorus down and then didn’t see each other for a while,” Wilson said of “Forever Valentine.” “Then we ended up on the road together. We’d sing every day at lunch time as we further hashed out the song,” he added.

The former Gap Band singer has been nominated for 13 Grammys over the course of his career; remarkably, he has never won. His most recent nomination was in 2019 in the Best Traditional R&B Performance for “Made for Love.”

“Forever Valentine” marks Wilson’s first bit of new solo music since the release of his 2017 album, In It to Win It. Over the past few years, Wilson has collaborated with an array of artists, including Snoop Dogg, Kanye West and Tyler, the Creator.

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