Adele’s “25” was named Album of the Year at the 59th annual Grammy Awards on Sunday. But when she took the stage to accept the award, the visibly emotional singer told the audience that she shouldn’t have won.
“I can’t possibly accept this award, and I’m very humbled and I’m very grateful and gracious, but my artist of my life is Beyoncé and this album, to me, the ‘Lemonade’ album, was so monumental Beyoncé,” Adele said of Beyoncé’s 2016 album, which was nominated in the same category as “25.” “It was so monumental and so well-thought-out and so beautiful and soul-baring, and we all got to see another side to you that you don’t always let us see and we appreciate that.”
“You are our light,” she added. “And the way that you make me and my friends feel, the way you make my black friends feel, is empowering. You make them stand up for themselves and I love you. I always have and I always will.”
The heartfelt speech brought Beyoncé to tears as she sat and listened from the front row.
Adele ended up winning five Grammys on Sunday night, while Beyoncé only took home two awards ― for Best Music Video and Best Urban Contemporary Album. According to Billboard’s Nat Adderley, no black woman has won Album of the Year since Lauryn Hill in 1999. While speaking to reporters later in the night, Adele reiterated that she believed “it was [Beyoncé’s] time to win.”
“My view is kind of, what the f*** does she have to do to win album of the year?”
Adele also praised Beyoncé after “Hello” won Record of the Year, too, saying, “My idol is Queen Bey, and I adore you and you move my soul every single day and you have done [so] for nearly 17 years. I adore you and I want you to be my mummy.”
Adele’s night actually started off rather awkwardly, when she stopped her tribute to the late George Michael because she felt it wasn’t going well. But it all ended with the world applauding her for her graciousness.