Swift set the blunder bar high during a particularly off-key duet with industry veteran Stevie Nicks--who herself seemed to struggle with hitting the high notes. But in what was undoubtedly the clumsy climax of the evening, butterfingered Swift broke one of her Grammy trophies. While attempting to pose with all four of her awards for photographers backstage, the 20-year-old songstress dropped one of them, smashing it into pieces.
Taylor's night might have been salvaged by her Album of the Year win, but seeing Beyoncé's disappointment written all over her face and the look of outright disdain from Lady Gaga likely put a damper on her big moment.
That said, Swift was certainly not alone in her awkwardness; the following stars kept her in very good company:
Carrie Underwood may have looked picture-perfect as she walked the evening's red carpet, but one thing was conspicuously missing from her ensemble: her fiancé, Canadian-born hockey player Mike Fisher. While the rumor mill immediately started churning, Fisher was merely waiting for Underwood at the entrance to the theater. Underwood delicately deflected the speculation by saying she was just trying to "ease him into" her world. "I can't feed him to the wolves," Underwood told E!'s Giuliana Rancic.
Beyoncé, on the other hand, surprised the crowd with an out-of-character peek into her personal life by thanking her "husband" Jay-Z during her acceptance speech for Best Female Vocal Performance. The couple, who wed quietly in 2008, rarely acknowledge their relationship in public. Jay-Z looked a little stunned by the high-profile mention of his marital status.
Speaking of Jay-Z, the hip-hop impresario found himself decidedly upstaged when a mystery child joined him onstage to collect the Best Rap Song Collaboration award for "Run This Town." The beaming boy, whose name is Julez--and who early reports say is the son of Beyoncé's sister, Solange--even got a lift up to the microphone from co-winner Rihanna. Adorably, he told the audience he had nothing to say.
The award for Most Awkward Group Moment of the night goes to all the celebs in the audience shamed into wearing geeky 3D glasses for a high-tech tribute to Michael Jackson. Even more mortifying was Black Eyed Peas frontman Will.i.am's decision to wear a personalized pair.
Even the folks behind the scenes helped make for some ungraceful on-air moments--most notably the heavily cut performance by Lil Wayne, Eminem, and Drake. While Wayne's "Drop the World" is certainly laced with profanity, CBS's overzealous censors dropped the volume entirely for long sections of the performance, causing much of the medley to be completely silent.
Doing her best to stand out in the crowd, Kristen Bell managed to take the spotlight from the Grammy winner she was meant to be introducing by flashing her brand-new engagement ring while presenting an award. Um, congrats?
And finally, in a similar yet completely opposite vein, Miley Cyrus used her time on the red-carpet camera to announce to the world that she was decidedly not engaged. Referring to a self-purchased piece of hand jewelry, "Hannah Montana" gave boyfriend Liam Hemsworth a warning that any promise ring in her future "better be real!"