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Grammys 2013: The awards week in parties

February 12, 2013|By Jessica Gelt and Gerrick Kennedy

Musicians — and the people who work closely with them — really know how to party. That’s why Grammys night, unlike other high-end awards nights like the Oscars or Emmys, usually means one thing: unadulterated decadence. Actors hate to be seen acting rowdy, but musicians pride themselves on it. The parties started Tuesday and lasted until the wee hours Sunday.

Solange Knowles and fellow alt-soul singer Lianne La havas were honored Wednesday at Essence's Fourth Annual Black Women in Music at posh West Hollywood nightspot Greystone Manor Supperclub.

During Grammys week the women's magazine celebrates the contributions of black women in the music industry. This year the spotlight was on breakthrough female artists, with La Havas and Knowles taking the stage to perform mini-sets.

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An impressive roster of stars toasted the singers, including "Glee's" Amber Riley, Beverly Bond, Bilal, Bridget Kelly, Dawn Richard, Diane Warren, Eric Benet, Kelis, Jill Scott and Verdine White of Earth, Wind & Fire, who joined Solange for a performance.

Amid the glitz and glamour (and excess) of Grammys week parties, music manager Michael “Blue” Williams and Family Tree Entertainment used their annual pre-Grammy Managers Brunch at BOA Steakhouse as a platform to address positivity.

The Saturday brunch was held in remembrance of friend and music industry executive Chris Lighty, an influential manager of hip-hop stars such as 50 Cent, LL Cool J, Missy Elliott and Diddy. Lighty committed suicide in August. Sure there were an abundance of mimosas and bites, but there was also an emphasis on mental and physical health with a roster of guest speakers.

Soho House was filled to capacity Saturday afternoon as Roc Nation's annual pre-Grammys brunch brought an elite list of powerhouses including Jay-Z, Beyonce, Rihanna, Kelly Rowland, Solange Knowles, Timbaland, Santigold, The-Dream and Kylie Minogue.

Guests noshed on fried chicken, roasted potatoes, waffles, bacon and macaroni and cheese and sipped on cocktails infused with Jay's endorsed cognac, D'Usse — a favorite was the Georgia Peach Julep that paired the cognac with creme de peche and fresh mint.

Late to the party was Chris Brown, who had crashed his black Porsche into a wall about noon, telling Beverly Hills police that he was being chased by paparazzi.

Most of the guests had emptied from the brunch by the time Brown arrived, but Rihanna was there to embrace and kiss the singer. The A-listers retreated to the back corner of a private patio after the guests had gone.

Earlier in the week Beyonce and Jay-Z could be spotted at the House of Blues cheering on little sister Solange, who headlined one of four Roc Nation-sponsored Grammy events at the venue.

The annual Cash Money pre-Grammy party remains among the week's highlights. The annual Saturday night bash goes for the gusto. Held at the Lot, a massive Hollywood film-soundstage complex, the hip-hop label went for a vintage Vegas theme that was equal parts Rat Pack and "Showgirls" with a ’51 Cadillac parked at the end of the red carpet, VIP cabanas surrounded by glowing palm trees — and plenty of exotic dancers who frolicked onstage and above partygoers in risers. Though we spotted a few of the label's stalwarts, including first-time Grammys winner Drake, the two biggest personalities, Lil Wayne and Nicki Minaj, were MIA.

One of Sunday’s biggest after parties happened at the Chateau Marmont, where Warner Music Group hosted a tony bash to fete its stars, including one of the night’s biggest winners, the Black Keys.

Gawkers and fans clogged up a patch of Sunset Boulevard across the street from the hotel, while flash bulbs popped, illuminating famous faces including Bruno Marss, Katy Perry, Muse, Blake Shelton, Fun., Hunter Hayes, Flo Rida, Kimbra, Zac Brown, Wiz Khalifa, Wale, Sting, Lena Dunham, Allison Williams, Quincy Jones, Neil Patrick Harris, John Mayer, Kelly Clarkson, Miranda Lambert, Florence Welsh, Selena Gomez, Lana del Rey, Leighton Meester, Santigold, Wiz Khalifa, Florence Welch, Abbie Cornish and Korn.

The lobby, bar and patio of the legendary rock 'n' roll hotel were all packed to the point that at times it was impossible to move among areas. Passed hors d'oeuvres included mini lobster rolls, mushroom croquettes, grilled cheese squares and sliders.

Among the night’s highlights: a spirited live performance by the Swedish synth-pop duo Icona Pop. Its  incredibly catchy tune “I Love It” got the crowd dancing — and once it started, it didn’t stop.

Follow the Ministry of Gossip on Twitter @LATcelebs and on Facebook facebook.com/ministryofgossip.

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