Bonnie Raitt Is Shocked as She Wins Song of the Year at the 2023 Grammy Awards: 'An Unreal Moment'

Bonnie Raitt won song of the year for "Just Like That" at Sunday's Grammy Awards

US singer Bonnie Raitt accepts the award for Song Of The Year for "Just Like That" during the 65th Annual Grammy Awards at the Arena in Los Angeles on February 5, 2023.
Bonnie Raitt. Photo: VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty

Bonnie Raitt took home the prestigious song of the year prize at the 2023 Grammy Awards.

First Lady Jill Biden presented the award to a flabbergasted Raitt for "Just Like That," which the singer said was inspired by her friend and fellow musician John Prine, who died following a battle with coronavirus in 2020.

"Oh my God," she said as she began her acceptance speech, her shock palpable. "I'm so surprised. I don't know what to say. This is just an unreal moment."

Raitt, 73, thanked the Recording Academy for appreciating "the art of songwriting" and "honoring" her.

"I was so inspired for this song by the incredible story of the love, and the grace, and the generosity of someone that donates their beloved's organs to help another person live," Raitt shared of the inspiration behind the Grammy-winning song. "And this story was so simple and so beautiful for these times. And people have been responding to the song, partly because of how much I love and we all love John Prine, and that was the inspiration for the music for this song, and telling this story from the inside."

She added, "I don't write a lot of songs but I'm so proud that you appreciate this one."

Raitt, who performed earlier in the awards show as part of the in-memoriam tribute to Christian McVie, concluded her speech saying she was "totally humbled" to be taking home song of the year.

While on the red carpet, Raitt told PEOPLE that she was "really proud to be acknowledged" at this year's Grammys, and particularly in the categories she was in.

"To be acknowledged for song of the year this time is pretty big – so, for one of my tunes? That's a big thing for me, so I'm very proud," she said.

Other songs nominated in the category included Gayle's "abcdefu," Lizzo's "About Damn Time," Taylor Swift's "All Too Well (10 Minute Version)," Harry Styles' "As It Was," Steve Lacy's "Bad Habit," Beyoncé's "Break My Soul," Adele's "Easy on Me," DJ Khaled featuring Rick Ross, Lil Wayne, JAY-Z, John Legend and Fridayy's "God Did," Kendrick Lamar's "The Heart Part 5" and Bonnie Raitt's "Just Like That."

Check out PEOPLE's full Grammys coverage to get the latest news on music's biggest night.

Song of the year, one of the four main Grammys categories, recognizes the composition of a single track that either was released or rose to prominence within the ceremony's eligibility period, which ran from Oct. 1, 2021 through Sept. 30, 2022. The award is presented to the song's writers rather than just the performing artist.

Released in April 2022, "Just Like That" appears on Raitt's album of the same name, which reached No. 44 on the Billboard 200 chart. The song was written solely by the performer, who told American Songwriter that its lyrics were inspired by a human interest news story about a woman who donated her late son's heart to another child.

"I just lost it," Raitt told the outlet. "It was the most moving and surprising thing. I wasn't expecting it. I vowed right then that I wanted to write a song about what that would take."

The 65th Annual Grammy Awards, hosted by Trevor Noah, are airing and streaming live from the Arena in Los Angeles

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