Morris Day’s band covered Prince’s “The Bird,” and several members of the audience joined in on the dancing to pay tribute to Prince.
The Time and Prince have a strong connection; Prince played a large role in helping to form the band in his native Minneapolis.
As Prince’s emblem appeared behind the stage, the lights went dark, and when they came back up, Mars was there, in a glittery, purple, Prince-esque suit.
He launched into a lively cover of “Let’s Go Crazy,” channelling Prince as he danced around the stage.
“Come on baby, let’s get wild!,” the star sang before rocking out on his guitar. He launched into a skilful guitar solo, causing the crowd to go nuts.
The “Purple Rain” singer, who died April 21, 2016, had an extensive history with the Grammy awards, winning seven statues over three decades.
His biggest Grammy triumph came in 1985, when he won his first three Grammys for best rock performance by a duo or group with vocal (with the Revolution), best album of original score written for a film or TV special (for “Purple Rain”) and best R&B song for “I Feel For You.”
Prince has already been the subject of multiple tributes from friends, collaborators and younger artists that he influenced. Madonna and Stevie Wonder honored Prince at the Billboard Music Awards last May; the next month, Erykah Badu, Bilal, Maxwell, Janelle Monae and more paid tribute at the BET Awards. Prince’s old band, the Revolution, held a concert in his honor in September, with Wonder and Chaka Khan headlining another sprawling tribute concert in October.
On Sunday, a majority of Prince’s catalog returned to most streaming services after over 18 months as an exclusive to Tidal. Earlier this week, the singer’s estate announced an agreement with Universal Music Group to release his music recorded after 1995 alongside music from his vault, including outtakes, demos and live recordings.