Trevor Noah offered his own contribution to the Taylor Swift-Travis Kelce obsession as he hosted the 66th Grammy Awards on Sunday.
The former “Daily Show” anchor returned for his fourth consecutive year to host to the annual awards show — “the only concert that actually starts on time” — poking fun at some of the music industry’s latest headlines, including Swift’s high-profile romance with the Kansas City Chiefs tight end.
After reveling in the star power that packed the Crypto.Com Arena in Los Angeles, Noah turned his attention to Swift and her inescapable influence — which has recently extended beyond music.
“I think it is so unfair how NFL fans have been complaining about the cameras cutting to Taylor Swift,” he said. “On Taylor’s behalf you know what I’m gonna do? I’m gonna give her a break.”
Since making her romance with Kelce public, Swift has become a staple in NFL coverage of Chiefs games, sometimes to fans’ frustration. On Sunday, Noah proposed a solution: “Every time someone says ‘Taylor Swift,’ I’m gonna cut the cameras to someone who played football.”
During Noah’s monologue, cameras suddenly cut to former football player and “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” star Terry Crews. “You like that, Terry Crews? You better fix your face, Terry,” Noah said, earning laughs from the star-studded crowd — including a laugh from Swift.
At the Golden Globes, last month, first-time host Jo Koy made a similar dig at the NFL’s spotlight on Swift. The Grammy winner responded to Koy’s joke with some side-eye and a sip of champagne. In a post-Globes interview with The Times, Koy acknowledged that the joke fell flat.
“What hurts the most is me just supporting Taylor, I support her, I love her work,” he said. “I got nieces that I bought tickets for. There’s no ill intent in that joke.”
During his monologue, Noah brought attention to Swift’s chances to make Grammys history. Swift, who earned six nominations, can become the first artist to win album of the year four times.
Noah also brought his “Daily Show” chops to his monologue, mixing the news with scathing comedy. In his sights on Sunday were TikTok and Universal Music Group’s threats to pull its music from the video platform.
“You know what, TikTok? Shame on you,” he said. “Shame on you for ripping off all of these artists. … How dare you do that. That’s Spotify’s job.”
Heading into Sunday’s ceremony, SZA led the pack of nominees with a total of nine nominations — including nods for song, record and album of the year. Singer Phoebe Bridgers, recording engineer Serban Ghenea and Victoria Monét followed closely behind with seven apiece. Jack Antonoff, Jon Batiste, Brandy Clark, Miley Cyrus, Billie Eilish, Olivia Rodrigo and Taylor Swift each earned six nominations.
At the 66th Grammys, Noah was more than just an emcee. The comedian’s “I Wish You Would” was nominated for comedy album, but ultimately Dave Chappelle and his “What’s in a Name” took home the prize during Sunday’s Premiere Ceremony. Chappelle was not present to accept his trophy.
The 66th Grammy Awards aired Sunday on CBS.