Sure, Billie was a baby by Grammys standards when she took home top honors last year.
Not to be the “Bad Guy” here — but contrary to popular belief and thick Google search stats that suggest otherwise, 2020’s golden gramophone princess did not make history as the youngest winner ever.
Loads of viral hype was heaped on Billie Eilish when when she took home five trophies at the tender age of 18. Still, she’s not that record holder — not even close.
There are many younger recording artists — some hard-core household names, others forgotten footnotes in pop culture — who did it first. Some nearly 4 decades ago, in fact.
Now, after a two-month COVID-19 delay, the controversial Grammys 2021 awards ceremony — hosted by “The Daily Show’s” Trevor Noah — finally airs at 8 p.m. Sunday, March 14, on CBS.
As we prepare to honor 2021’s finest on what’s hyped annually as “music’s biggest night,” here are the 12 youngest Grammy Award winners in the Recording Academy’s 63-year history:
The Peasall Sisters
The “youngest Grammy winners” are also the most obscure. The long-lost sister act of Leah, Hannah and Sarah Peasall was 8, 11 and 14, respectively, when they earned the title.
The Tennessee trio’s sweet 2000 cover of the Carter Sisters classic “In the Highways” was featured on the grassroots soundtrack of the acclaimed George Clooney/Coen Brothers film “O Brother, Where Art Thou?,” which won Album of the Year in 2002.
Although the Peasalls didn’t appear on screen, they did dub in the “working for my lord” singing voices of Ulysses Everett McGill’s (Clooney) daughters, the Wharvey Girls.
They went on to release two Americana albums: 2002’s “First Offering” and 2005’s “Home to You,” on which they are accompanied by legendary four-time Grammy winner Randy Scruggs, a member of country/bluegrass royalty who recorded his own first album at 13 and died at 64 after a short illness in 2018.
So, whatever happened to the Peasalls?
Their all-grownup version of the gospel classic “Where No One Stands Alone” was featured in a trailer for the Coen Brothers’ remake of “True Grit” in 2011 — the same year they chose to snuff the spotlight.
In a joint statement titled, “The Opportunity of a Lifetime is only good for the Lifetime of the Opportunity,” the sisters’ family management announced they were “blessed” — but done after a decade on the road:
“Thank you to all who have been our faithful fans. When we began traveling the girls were 6, 9 & 12. They’ve grown up. We always told the girls that we weren’t the Osmonds or the Jacksons and they were always free to follow their own dreams and callings. That time has come. The Peasall Sisters will only take bookings through May of 2011. If you ever wanted to have us at your event, festival, church or party, you’d better hurry.”
This “Blue” belter earned her Grammy street cred as the youngest individual winner ever. At the tender age of 14 years old (plus a 182 days), LeAnn Rimes accepted her first two trophies in 1997. Trivia bonus point: The Mississippi-born singer also became the first country artist to win the coveted Best New Artist Grammy.
As an adult, she’s finally moved on from bikini beach pics with buff hubby Eddie Cibrian — ending a high-profile feud with his ex-wife, former “RHOBH” pot-stirrer Brandi Glanville — to put the focus back on her voice.
Rimes, now 38, took home top honors while heavily disguised as The Sun on the 2020 season of Fox’s singing competition “The Masked Singer.” Sure, the breakout hit is gloriously goofy — but her pipes are still golden.
She also celebrated the 20th anniversary of singing the theme song — “Can’t Fight the Moonlight,” written by Grammy winner Diane Warren — for the cult movie “Coyote Ugly” in 2020.
“There are places I have been to where they intentionally put on the song and clear off the bar a little, smile and look at me as if asking if I want to hop on up on the bar and sing,” Rimes told The Post. “Diane Warren, [producer] Trevor Horn and I knew we were creating something special but we had little idea then that we were creating something together that would have such an empowering effect for women. It always brings a huge smile to my heart.”
Oh, and she isn’t totally done with thirst traps — but now they come with a bit of a message. Last October, the “How Do I Live” singer posted a semi-nude to Instagram with a candid post about living with a painful skin condition.
“So much of my journey, both personally and within my creations, my new chant record and podcast coming out soon, has been excavating pieces that I’ve been hiding and bringing them to the light,” the singer captioned two photos of her body covered by psoriasis.
She continued, “Music has been my gift, and why I’m here. But I want to give a voice to these other pieces of me. And I want to give a voice to what so many other people are going through. This is finally my time to be unabashedly honest about what psoriasis is and what it looks like.”
The Mexican singer known as “El Sol de México (The Sun of Mexico)” follows hot on Rimes’ heels with his win at 14 years and 313 days old.
After launching his pro music career at 12 years old in 1982, the singer born Luis Miguel Gallego Basteri became the youngest male artist in music history to win the golden gramophone in 1984 for “Me Gustas Tal Como Eres,” a dated duet with Scottish singer Sheena Easton that’s so saccharine it probably drove her to sing Prince’s notorious “Sugar Walls” later that year.
Now 50, he rarely grants interviews and travels with insanely tight security to avoid paparazzi. “I maintain my sanity by keeping my distance,” he once said.
Still, his intensely guarded private life (he dated five-time Grammy winner and 34-time nominee Mariah Carey out of the spotlight from 1998 to 2001) and pop, mariachi, and bolero showmanship have combined to make Miguel a bona fide living legend in his homeland.
He also was the first Latin artist to be awarded two platinum-certified (i.e. million-selling) Spanish-language albums in the US with 1991’s ‘Romance’’ and 1994’s ‘‘Segundo Romance,’’ the latter earning him 35 platinum records throughout Central and South America. He is now recognized by Billboard as the artist with the most top 10 hits on the Hot Latin Songs chart.
But he doesn’t just make headlines for hits.
In 2017, Miguel surrendered to US Marshals after an arrest warrant was issued when he defied a 2016 civil court order to pay his former manager William Brockhaus $1,000,000. He was released the same day after signing a promissory note, and later settled the lawsuit that prompted his arrest, Page Six reported at the time.
Miguel could probably afford it: He remains renowned for his high-grossing live concerts. He is the highest-grossing Latin touring artist since Billboard’s Boxscore started tracking touring data in 1990, with a staggering $278.5 million in ticket sales. As of 2019, Marc Anthony still trailed Miguel in second place with a career total of $211.3 million.
This 48-year-old might be best-known now for his 2017 summer anthem “Options” with “King of Reggaeton” Pitbull — but Stephen Marley was one of Grammys’ youngest winners at 16 years and 308 days old.
Hell, he’s almost a Grammy prodigy.
After previous nominations in 1982, ’85 and ’88, respectively, Marley finally took home his first trophy for Best Reggae Album for “Bright Day” in 1989 with Ziggy Marley & The Melody Makers.
The veteran Jamaican-American musician is the son of the late reggae icon — and 2001 Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award winner — Bob Marley and his wife, Cuban-Jamaican singer Rita Marley, 74.
Marley went on to become an eight-time Grammy winner, three times as a solo artist, twice as a producer for younger brother Damian Marley, and three more times as a member of his eldest bro Ziggy’s group, in which little Stephen launched his musical career as a Grammy-nominated 7-year-old.
He’s also bucked trends to express a refreshingly humble attitude about his indelible mark on the music industry. “The mainstream is not a violent place — not a vulgar place,” Marley said in 2017 while promoting his international hit with Pitbull.
At 17 years (and 80 days) of age, Lorde became the youngest artist to win Song of the Year and Best Pop Solo Performance when she won for “Royals” in 2014.
“Thank you to everyone who has let this song explode, cause it’s been mental,” the teen said in her abrupt acceptance speech, which was delivered through lips painted in beyond-her-years dried-blood-red lipstick.
However, a few years later Lorde wasn’t feeling like “queen bee” of the Grammys: Despite being nominated for Album of the Year in 2018, the New Zealander born Ella Marija Lani Yelich-O’Connor was notably left off the performers list at the Grammy ceremony.
At the time, reports suggested that then 21-year-old was ticked about not being offered a solo slot, and turned down offers to sing as part of a Tom Petty tribute.
As snark about her snub swelled on social, Lorde tweeted in all caps, “IF YOU’RE DEBATING WHETHER OR NOT I CAN MURDER A STAGE … COME SEE IT FOR URSELF” before dropping a hot link to her upcoming tour dates.
In May 2020 she announced — via a lengthy email to her fans — that she’s working with Taylor Swift collaborator Jack Antonoff on new music that is “so f—ing good.”
OK, now we get to the top teen artist of the COVID-19 era.
She doesn’t take the top title in “youngest winners” — but Billie Eilish is def the youngest to win Grammys’ big two: Album of the Year and Record of the Year, for “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?” in 2020.
She was on 18 years — and 39 days — old when she earned a whopping five trophies at the 2020 Grammys — and looked increasingly uncomfortable about it on camera, much to the viewing public’s voyeuristic delight.
“Can I just say that I think Ariana should have won this,” she barely sputtered out upon reaching the podium to fetch her Album of the Year statuette. Her songwriting partner brother, Finneas, 23, picked up the thread: “We didn’t write a speech for this because we didn’t write an album to win a Grammy. We didn’t think it would win anything ever.”
As his little sis giggled, he continued: “We wrote an album about depression and suicidal thoughts and climate change and being the bad guy, whatever that means. We stand up here confused and grateful.”
A year later, at the ripe old age of 19, Eilish has revealed a secret boyfriend, battled body-shaming haters and self-harm, sang a James Bond theme song — and even found time to get her drivers license and a hot new ride.
Now, she’s getting ready to “to get some s–t out” for diehard fans demanding new music — on one condition.
“I am making you a f – – king album,” she announced via Instagram in December. “I will not put it out if you keep making fun of my hair.”
Daya, Swedish-Indian-American artist from Pennsylvania, was 18 years and 105 days old when she won Best Dance Recording Grammy with The Chainsmokers in 2017.
“Don’t Let Me Down” became both acts’ first top-five single on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at number three. As of March 2021, the track’s accompanying music video has racked up more than 1.6 billion views on YouTube.
However, her first-full length release on Interscope Records, “Sit Still, Look Pretty,” debuted to mixed reviews. Rolling Stone said Daya’s Grammy-winning promise was “squandered” —but reminded listeners that her strong vocals “made her a surprisingly soulful leader of a new kind of bubblegum.”
After splitting with Interscope, she released the single “First Time” on Sandlot Records. Now 22, Daya and has a full-length studio release from the label due sometime in 2021.
Sure, her 1999 Grammy win at 18 years and 123 days old was overshadowed by a now-long-rumored feud with her “The Boy is Mine” duet mate Brandy — but Monica has survived that and much more.
Monica, now 40 and a four-time Grammy nominee, has sold 5.3 million albums in the US, according to Billboard chart watchdogs. A sleeper hit, “Commitment” reached number one in 2019 on Billboard’s Adult R&B Songs chart, marking her first No. 1 in in nine years.
In 2020, she marked the 25th anniversary of her career by releasing the studio album “Trenches,” featuring the title track — produced by Chad Hugo, 47, and Pharrell Williams, 47, aka the Neptunes — with an assist from hot Atlanta rapper Lil Baby, 26.
“For MANY years I’ve dreamed of working with The Neptune’s,” Monica said on Insta. “Admiring their ability to remain current yet timeless as well as their bond & brotherhood because loyalty is fleeting in this business!!”
Next up: Reuniting with her frenemy, former “Moesha” teen queen Brandy, now 42 and also rebounding with new music after the lengthy lull that followed ’90s hits like “I Wanna Be Down” and “Sittin’ up in My Room.”
Monica and Brandy’s much-anticipated joint appearance on the Verzuz webcast battle series went down on August 31, 2020, at Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta. Launched in March 2020 at the outset of the coronavirus pandemic, the hit Instagram Live series has featured a series of pop, R&B and hip-hop veterans facing off in good-natured competition with their classics.
Monica and Brandy’s installment was all in good fun — albeit a little wacky with the former’s non-stop promo of her CURRENT work, and the latter’s poetry slams — and found them showing much respect to each others’ respective talents.
At least 1.2 million people tuned in for the record-breaking live battle. — and resulted in 21.9 million combined streams for both artists’ song catalogs from Aug. 31 through Sept. 2, according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data. That three-day total compares to 6.3 million streams in the three days leading up to the Verzuz — a whopping 248% spike.
Who came out on top? Monica. Of the 21.9M streaming total, her catalog accounted for 11.2 million streams, while Brandy’s tracks clocked 10.9M plays.
This Staten Island native could have been a has-been at 15, when “The New Mickey Mouse Club” went off the air after three years in 1995. But she was just getting started.
At 17, her big voice scored her a gig singing “Reflection,” the theme song for Disney’s 1998 animated feature “Mulan.” Aguilera’s big break came with her self-titled debut the next year, which peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 and spawned three chart-topping singles: “Genie In A Bottle,” “What A Girl Wants” and “Come On Over Baby (All I Want Is You).”
It also snagged the then 19-year-old the Best New Artist Grammy at the 42nd annual ceremony in 1999.
Xtina followed up with a string of hits, including “Dirrty,” “Fighter,” “Lady Marmelade,” “Beautiful” and “Ain’t No Other Man.” Then she detoured to the big and small screens, for Cher’s camptastic “Burlesque” in 2010, and NBC’s “The Voice” from 2011-2018, both of which pulled major focus from her music.
Alas, five Grammy Awards, one Latin Grammy and two scathing Eminem diss track references later, Aguilera ranks at number 58 on Rolling Stone’s list of 100 Greatest Singers of All Time and boasts an estimated 75 million record sales — making her one of the music world’s best-selling artists.
She dipped her toe back into the industry with a scene-stealing support spot on A Great Big World’s hit “Say Something (I’m Giving Up on You)” that helped the song win the 2014 Grammy for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance. Two more nods followed in 2018.
Aguilera then revisited her O.G. moment by re-recording “Reflection” for the 2020 live-action remake of “Mulan” on Disney+ streaming platform.
“Mulan” lyricist David Zippel still remembers listening to then-unknown’s first demo of the track.
“When we heard her sing, it was like, ‘Oh my God. This kid sounds like she had the phrasing and understanding of lyrics of someone who had been singing for 25 years,’ ” Zippel told The Post. “Even then it was so palpable. She was a perfectionist even as a 17-year-old.”
After renewed positive buzz and nearly 30 million new YouTube views, Aguilera, now 40, seems primed for a major comeback after reportedly signing onto Jay-Z’s Roc Nation roster.
Meanwhile, the public’s latest Xtina sighting was a very revealing set of pool photos captured in Miami when she took a dip in between recording sessions, and exclusively featured by the Page Six team. The singer was snapped while hanging with her 6-year-old daughter, Summer — whom she shares with fiancé Max Rutler.