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Grammy Preview: The Biggest Performances


This weekend’s Grammy extravaganza in Los Angeles promises to bring plenty of water cooler moments, from super-rare television performances (Dr. Dre! Dylan!) to all-star tributes (Florence and the Machine giving props to Aretha!) Below, SPIN breaks down the biggest events of music’s biggest night. And remember, the ceremony airs Sunday at 8 PM (EST) on CBS. Check back Monday for SPIN’s post-show coverage.

Blues legend Buddy Guy, R&B icon Mavis Staples, ’80s pop queen Cyndi Lauper, and others will deliver pre-ceremony performances, which will be streamed live on the Grammy YouTube channel from 1:15-3:00 PM (EST) on Sunday. This page also features a live stream of other notable Grammy events beginning Friday at 5 PM.

Two days after releasing her insanely anticipated new single “Born This Way,” Lady Gaga is expected to debut the song on national television. But all we want to know how will she top the meat dress?

Cee Lo and Gwyneth Paltrow will duet on Lo’s “F*** You,” and the duo will get extra fire power in the form of Jim Henson puppets. Lo & ‘Trow are teaming up with characters from the Henson Company’s theater show Stuffed and Unstrung, who will act as the pair’s support band. “He’ll be backed by puppets who will make up a very weird and cool band,” Henson’s son Brian told MTV.

One-time rumored flames Drake and Rihanna – who have four nominations each – will perform together for the first time ever on TV. Expect them to bring a fiery version of “What’s My Name,” from Rihanna’s Loud.

Dr. Dre (making his first live TV performance in over a decade) will perform with Eminem, suggesting that Dre’s long-in-the-works Detox album will finally see the light of day this Spring. It has to, right?

Bob Dylan will bestow his seal of approval on folk-rock upstarts Mumford & Sons and the Avett Brothers in a special “salute to acoustic music.”

Christina Aguilera, Jennifer Hudson, Martina McBride, and Florence and the Machine‘s Florence Welch will lead an all-star tribute to Aretha Franklin, who underwent surgery in December for an undisclosed ailment. The pop stars will perform classic hits by the Queen of Soul.

Hard to believe Mick Jagger has never performed on the Grammys before. The Rolling Stone leader will make his live Grammy debut with Raphael Saadiq for the annual “In Memoriam” segment, which pays tribute to music icons who died in the previous year. Jagger will be honoring the passing of soul great Solomon Burke.