Janelle Monae performed at the 61st annual Grammy Awards at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on Feb. 10, 2019. Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for The Recording Academy 

There's really only one thing the 2019 Grammy Awards were about—the performances. With only a small handful of awards actually handed out during the live telecast, the show was made up of performances for the bulk of the three-and-a-half hour runtime.

With a jam-packed show featuring everything from upbeat and energetic numbers to solemn tributes and numbers with some political and social commentary, there was quite a lot to watch. While all of the artists taking the stage brought something different which made them stand out, a few others stood out above the rest.

Alicia Keys- “Killing Me Softly”/ “Lucid Dreams (Forget Me)”/ “Unforgettable”/ “Clocks”/ “Use Somebody”/ “Boo’d Up”/ “Doo-Wop (That Thing)”/ “New York”

Did anyone else need to actually perform during the Grammys? Keys pulling double duty as host and then surprising everyone with her tribute to several other songs was literally the only music we needed.

Lady Gaga and Mark Ronson- “Shallow”

There’s no question Gaga’s song is on track to be a major award-season winner, especially after it won earlier in the night (and seems likely to win at the Oscars) later this month. This performance was as powerful as ever but also allowed her to bring her signature pizzazz to the stage with a bedazzled mic and jumpsuit.

Shawn Mendes and Miley Cyrus- “In My Blood”

This performance did what some of the best music out there does—let the talented voices behind the song shine. Stripped of anything too flashy, featuring Mendes on piano before he joined Cyrus and full orchestra on stage with his guitar, the pair proved that they have genuine talent with the number. The pair also teased a potential future collaboration on the red carpet—and this performance made it obvious that it is the collaboration the world didn’t know it needed.

Camila Cabello feat. J. Balvin, Ricky Martin, Young Thug and Arturo Sandoval- “Havana/”Pegate”/”Mi Gente”

This lively number to open up the show had plenty of Latin flair and started the show off right with a party atmosphere. Featuring an unexpected cameo from Cabello’s own sister and father in the background, plenty of colorful dresses, a little bit of a “West Side Story” vibe and some great choreographed salsa moves, it was the perfect party opener for the show. Of course, while it was the opener, it also made sure to work in a subtle political message as well, with Balvin casually sitting on a bench and holding up a newspaper stating “Build Bridges, Not Walls” prior to his part of the performance.

Janelle Monáe- “Make You Feel”

If Michael Jackson was reincarnated after his death, then he may have come back in Janelle Monáe. This performance had all the trademarks in it that used to make the King of Pop such a legendary performer. Full of dance moves and her own well-known deliberate aesthetic choices, the number was everything a Grammy performance should be—and proved that Monáe is someone who is going to be around for a long time.

MusiCares Person Of The Year Tribute Featuring Dolly Parton, Katy Perry, Maren Morris, Miley Cyrus, Kacey Musgraves and Little Big Town- “Here You Come Again”/”Jolene”/”After The Gold Rush”/”Red Shoes”/ “9 to 5”

This tribute to Parton was a perfect country music lovefest in the Grammys, featuring some of the biggest names in the genre and infusing so much love for Parton’s incredible career. Parton featured heavily throughout all of the numbers and her touch was evident throughout the entire 10-minute number.

Smokey Robinson, Jennifer Lopez and Alicia Keys – Motown Tribute

There may have been some controversy over the fact that the tribute heavily featured J. Lo, but she performed her heart out throughout the numbers. The only thing it was missing was perhaps a little more Alicia and Smokey incorporated in, but otherwise, it was nearly flawless.

Dan + Shay- “Tequila”

That. Final. Note. Nothing else needs to be said about the pair’s performance.