Much Grammy 'Love' for Beyoncé, OutKast
Beyoncé has officially entered the Alicia Keys, Norah Jones and Lauryn Hill pantheon.
The "Dangerously in Love" diva, after opening the ceremony with a show-stopping duet with Prince, ended up the big winner at Sunday night's 46th annual Grammy Awards, collecting a record five trophies.
Beyoncé – who came into the ceremony with six nominations – was just shy of a sweep, as Coldplay topped her for record of the year, for "Clocks." Album of the year went to funk-rap duo OutKast for "Speakerboxx/The Love Below" (one of their three wins) and song of the year honors went to Luther Vandross, with Richard Marx, for "Dance with My Father."
The former Destiny's Child singer, meanwhile, picked up awards for best contemporary R&B album (for her solo debut, "Dangerously in Love"); best R&B song and best rap/sung collaboration (for her hit "Crazy in Love"); best female R&B performance (for "Dangerously in Love 2"); and best R&B performance by a duo or group with vocals (for "The Closer I Get to You," a remake she did with Vandross).
Her five awards tied the record set by Keys, Jones and Hill for the most Grammys won by a female artist. However, Beyoncé's opportunity to beat that benchmark was spoiled by the British band Coldplay.
Standing before the crowd inside the Staples Center in Los Angeles, Coldplay frontman Chris Martin dedicated his group's win to the memory of Johnny Cash and to John Kerry, "who," said Martin, "hopefully will be your President one day."
Vandross, who suffered a near-fatal stroke last Easter, delivered a memorable message via a pre-recorded videotape, thanking his fans for their support. Including the record of the year award and his collaboration with Beyoncé, Vandross ended up with four Grammys (out of five nominations), including best male R&B vocal performance and best R&B album for "Dance with My Father."
Accepting that last honor for himself and Vandross, Marx said their two fathers were up in heaven together "opening a bottle of champagne."
Other multiple winners included bluegrass singer Alison Krauss, with three; and Jack White of The White Stripes, Eminem and the late Warren Zevon, each with two.
OutKast also took three (album of the year, best rap album and urban/alternative performance), while two trophies went to a certain singer who helped contribute to the controversy of last Sunday's Super Bowl halftime show.
"This is officially the greatest moment of my life," an otherwise contrite Justin Timberlake said upon winning the second of his two Grammys (for pop male vocal performance and pop vocal album, for "Justified").
Other highlights from the three-and-a-half-hour CBS broadcast: Evanescence, who have sold more than 6 million albums worldwide and were in the running for album of the year, picked up the best new artist Grammy.
Rival nominee – and expected winner – 50 Cent followed Evanescence up to the stage to congratulate group members before he smiled and waved into the TV camera. "Thank you, 50 Cent," deadpanned Evanescence's Amy Lee before continuing with her acceptance speech.
June Carter Cash "is laughing and dancing somewhere," her son, John Carter Cash, told the audience as he collected his late mother's Grammy for best female country vocal performance ("Keep on the Sunny Side").
In pre-show ceremonies, June and her husband, Johnny Cash, who also died last year, posthumously won Grammys; he for best short-form video (for "Hurt") and she for her effort in the traditional folk album category ("Wildwood Flower"). Johnny Cash is now a 12-time Grammy winner.
In another poignant moment, the Beatles were presented with the National Academy of Recording Arts and Science's special president's award. Accepting the honor live onstage in L.A. were Olivia Harrison (George Harrison's widow) and Yoko Ono Lennon (John Lennon's widow).
Olivia recalled George's first visit to the United States, 41 years ago. When he returned to England, he said (as related by Olivia): "They have everything over there. Why do they need us?"
Yoko said: "If John were here tonight, he'd be happy that his effort with the other three was acknowledged this way by the Grammys. And probably, he would have wanted to say again, 'Come together, give peace a chance, and love is all we need.' "
From London, Ringo Starr and Paul McCartney separately expressed their thanks. "We're still here, and we still love you," said Ringo, while Paul, strumming the very guitar he played on "The Ed Sullivan Show" 40 years ago, sang a brief but familiar refrain. The lyrics went, "Yesterday, all my troubles seemed so far away."
Check out PEOPLE.com's updated list of Grammy winners and complete Grammys coverage.