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Ludwig Göransson Was The Only Artist To Mention 21 Savage On The Grammys Stage

The incarcerated rapper contributed to Childish Gambino’s Grammy-winning “This is America.”

Despite performances and speeches by several high-profile 21 Savage collaborators at the 2019 Grammy Awards, only Ludwig Göransson mentioned the currently incarcerated rapper onstage. Göransson, accepting the Record of the Year award in Childish Gambino’s absence, shouted 21 out towards the end of his speech.

“We want to thank all the rappers that are featured on the song. 21 Savage, who should be here tonight,” he said, marking the night’s only true reference to the rapper who currently sits in the custody of US Immigration & Customs Enforcement after an arrest in Atlanta last weekend.

Before his arrest, 21 Savage was reportedly set to join Post Malone onstage for a performance of their No. 1 hit, “rockstar.” Although Post was photographed backstage in a 21 Savage shirt, his performance was devoid of any reference to the Atlanta rapper aside from a brief “21” ad-lib included in the backing track.

Cardi B—who won Rap Album of The Year—rattled off a list of collaborators that appeared on her debut album, Invasion of Privacy, but didn’t include 21 Savage in her speech. He appears on “Bartier Cardi,” the album’s multi-Platinum second single. Cardi was, however, visibly nervous throughout her time on stage. She later tagged him and other artists in an Instagram video reflecting on her win.

Drake previously worked with 21 Savage on “Sneakin” in 2016, but 21’s name didn’t come up during Drake’s acceptance speech for Best Rap Song. He was, however, cut off somewhat unceremoniously before finishing his remarks.

The Atlanta rapper’s manager revealed that she reached out to several artists trying to get representation for 21 onstage:

21 Savage is currently being held without bail after shocking reports over Super Bowl weekend that the rapper, long associated with the Atlanta trap scene, is actually a UK citizen living in the US on an expired visa. Since 21’s arrest, his lawyers have spoken out about ICE’s initial claims that the rapper had fabricated his origin story.

According to a statement released to the press, the rapper was born in the UK, but first moved the United States when he was seven years old. After briefly leaving the country, he returned in 2005 under a nonimmigrant visa, which expired in 2006. 21 applied for a U-Visa in 2017, meant for victims of crimes to apply for US residency. His application is still pending, and his immigration status has never been a secret to US officials.

Catch up on 21 Savage’s biggest hits on Genius now.

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