You guys. How much did you love Esperanza Spalding's gorgeous "In Memoriam" tribute number? Her performance was sublime. And if you're not familiar with this Grammy award-winning artist, please treat yourself and look up her music.
Esperanza could not have gotten this one more perfect. She sang "What a Wonderful World" in her cool, sultry voice. It's a Louis Armstrong classic, one we've heard dozens of times. She owned it, but in a soft, respectful way. And she had the Southern California Children's Chorus singing backup -- so sweet!
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I think even Justin Bieber would have to tip his hat to this performance. (Esperanza beat him for that Grammy as Best New Artist in 2011.) Esperanza's rendition was warm and wistful, full of soul, and it also kept everyone from interrupting with applause (hate it when the applause for some people is louder than for other people in past memorials). We were left to quietly contemplate images of performers we lost this year. Such a lovely and dignified moment.
Not only does Esperanza sing like an angel, she also plays a mean jazz bass (though not in last night's memorial tribute). Her latest album is Chamber Music Society, and she has another coming out next month, Radio Music Society. Can't wait! But I would love, love, love to get a recording of her Oscars performance.
Esperanza looked impeccable last night, too -- but in a way all her own. She wore a long, white, gold-trimmed toga-like dress. And when I put it that way, it sounds goofy, but as you can see, it's sophisticated minimalism at its best. Her red carpet dress was also an understated winner.
And can we please talk about her hair? I am a huge fan of Esperanza's big, bold afro. It's natural halo! And that purple lipstick -- okay, right now I kind of want to be Esperanza. Anyone else?
What did you think of Esperanza's Oscars performance?
Image via Kevin Winter/Getty