Los Angeles (CNN) -- Adele thanked her doctors "who brought my voice back" as she accepted one of six Grammy awards Sunday night, and she later proved their work was true with a strong vocal performance.
The 23-year-old British songstress was crying by the time she accepted her sixth award -- for the most prized album of the year Grammy. "I just first want to say 'Mom, girl did good,'" Adele said.
"It's been the most life-changing year," she said.
Adele, who underwent surgery for "recurrent vocal cord hemorrhage" in November, sang "Rolling In The Deep," ending speculation about her recovery. Adele enjoyed a loud and long standing ovation from the packed Staples Centers audience after her strong delivery.
Just minutes earlier, she and songwriting partner Paul Epworth won the song of the year Grammy for their collaboration on the song.
She also won Grammys for record of the year, best pop solo performance, best short form music video and best pop vocal album for "21."
Chris Brown's career rehabilitation from his arrest for the beating of his then-girlfriend Rihanna just before the 2009 Grammys took another step forward with a Grammy win and two performances Sunday.
"We got one!" the 22-year-old Brown said during a short acceptance speech after winning a Grammy for best R&B album.
Rihanna was given her turn to perform during the same hour, collaborating with Coldplay on stage.
The Beach Boys, celebrating their 50th anniversary as a group, performed together publicly for the first time in two decades, joined on stage by Foster The People and Maroon 5.
"It was a good vibration," Beach Boy Mike Love said backstage. "It was fun, fun, fun, too."
"It's a big event in our lives," Brian Wilson said. "What more can you ask for?"
One-time Beach Boy Glen Campbell watched from near the stage, and later performed in his own Grammys tribute.
Campbell, 75, launched his "Goodbye Tour" last year after revealing he had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease.
Campbell was joined by current Grammy nominees Blake Shelton and The Band Perry for a live performance as part of a tribute to Campbell, a five-time Grammy winner.
"Thank y'all so much," Campbell said, after a rousing rendition of "Rhinestone Cowboy" during which he showed no sign of disability.
Campbell was presented a Grammy lifetime achievement award in a ceremony earlier.
Tributes to Whitney Houston, who died suddenly Saturday, were frequent in the telecast, including a replay of her memorable Grammy performance of "I Will Always Love You." Jennifer Hudson later performed the song at the end of the traditional Grammy segment honoring those who died in the previous year.
Host LL Cool J said a prayer for Houston in the first minutes for the 54th annual awards show.
Alicia Keys and Bonnie Raitt sang a musical tribute to legendary singer Etta James, who died last month.
American folk indie favorite Bon Iver was awarded the best new artist Grammy.
"When I started to make songs, I did it for the inherent reward of making songs, so I'm a little uncomfortable up here," singer-songwriter Justin Vernon said as he accepted.
The Grammy for best rock performance went to Foo Fighters for "Walk." It was the fifth Grammy given the group Sunday.
Lady Antebellum won the Grammy for best country album for "Own The Night."
Jay-Z and Kanye West won for best rap performance for their collaboration "Otis." It was the fourth Grammy won by West Sunday.
CNN's Denise Quan contributed to this report.