Taylor Swift gave a powerful, cutting speech at the 2016 Grammy Awards while accepting her trophy for Album of the Year. Swift released 1989 in October 2014, which was too late for the 2015 ceremony’s nomination deadline.
Swift began her speech by thanking Max Martin, her co-executive producer, who she believes deserved to be on the Grammy stage for “the past 25 years.” Prior to Monday night, Martin has been nominated three separate times for Album of the Year since 2000: Backstreet Boy’s Millennium, Katy Perry’s Teenage Dream and Swift’s Red. For the 2016 ceremony, he was also nominated for Album of the Year for the Weeknd’s Beauty Behind the Madness.
Swift proceeded to not only take digs at the gender disparity in the Grammy wins for major categories, but at Kanye West as well. Swift noted that she was the “first woman to win Album of the Year at the Grammys twice,” having won the award in 2010 for her album Fearless. She transitioned the fact into a message for young women who have their success “undercut” by others, which doubled as a response to Kanye’s “I made that bitch famous” line off Life of Pablo track “Famous.”
“If you just focus on the work, and you don’t let those people sidetrack you, someday when you get where you’re going, you’ll look around and you’ll know that it was you and the people who love you that put you there and that will be the greatest feeling in the world,” the singer said.
West has yet to respond to Swift’s speech.Watch Taylor Swift’s opening performance in our 2016 Grammy Awards Best and Worst Moments video.