#WCW: Watch Adele's Glorious Performance of 'Chasing Pavements' at the 2009 Grammys
At the time of its release, PEOPLE described the song as "lush" and "soaring"
When you’re right, you’re right.
Back in 2008, PEOPLE reviewed the album 19 by a newcomer from the U.K. named Adele. Stateside she was an unknown, but that status would quickly change – and this publication heard the message loud and clear. Our reviewer at the time said the song “Chasing Pavements” was “lush” and “soaring,” and gave Adele’s first album four stars:
“On the heels of Estelle and Duffy, Adele is continuing the charge of retro-soul chanteuses from the U.K. And this 20-year-old Londoner is arguably the best of them all. Her smashing debut – which opened at No. 1 in the U.K. after it was released there last January – seamlessly weaves R&B, pop, jazz, folk and blues into her own torchy tapestry. With a knockout voice that’s rich and supple, robust and sultry, it’s hard to believe that this singer-songwriter is barely out of her teens.”
Sure enough, Adele was nominated for a slew of Grammys that year: record of the year, song of the year, best new artist and best female pop vocal performance. She won the latter two, and watching the then-newbie singer accept her accolades was thrilling:
But hearing Adele belt out “Chasing Pavements” (with some backing from Sugarland) was downright breathtaking. Skip ahead to 3:37 for the superstar’s premier 2009 Grammy stage spotlight:
The beautiful Brit’s voice and poise while belting out that torch song made us wonder if she could ever top herself. As time would soon tell, the answer was a resounding yes – and beyond our wildest expectations.
As we look forward to her sure-to-be epic Grammy Awards performance this year, let’s all take a moment to indulge in the wistful nostalgia of Adele’s recent past – a time when the #WCW hashtag had not even been invented yet. Were we ever so young?