"Here we are together on music's biggest night celebrating the artists that do it best," Keys told the audience at the Staples Center on January 26 hours after news of Bryant's death broke.
"But to be honest with you we're all feeling crazy sadness right now. Because earlier today Los Angeles, America and the whole wide world lost a hero," she said about the beloved basketball player.
"And we are literally standing here heartbroken in the house that Kobe Bryant built," Keys said from the Staples Center, where Bryant played for most of his 20-year-career with the Los Angeles Lakers.
"Right now, Kobe and his daughter Gianna and all of those who have been tragically lost today are in our spirt, our hearts, our prayers. They're in this building," she told the Grammy Awards crowd who were sitting in the Lakers' home court.
"I'd like to ask everybody to take a moment to hold them inside of you," Keys said. "And share our strength and our support with their families."
She then told the audience, "We never in a million years ever thought we would have to start the show like this. We love you, Kobe," and brought Boyz II Men out and they performed "It's So Hard To Say Goodbye."
Lizzo began the show telling the audience, "Tonight is for Kobe!"
As Radar previously reported, Bryant, 41, and eight others were killed in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, CA.
His 13-year-old daughter Gianna was onboard with his father. The other passengers have not been identified.
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Keys paid a loving tribute to Bryant with her heartfelt speech about his tragic death.
Bryant earned two gold medals at the Olympics playing for Team USA.
There were no survivors after Bryant's helicopter crashed on January 26.
Boyz II Men and Keys earned a standing ovation for their song.
Kobe's daughter Gigi was a passenger aboard the helicopter.
We never in a million years ever thought we would have to start the show like this. We love you, Kobe,” Keys said at the Grammys after Bryant's death.