The 1990s win big at BET awards
REMY Ma has ended rival Nicki Minaj’s seven-year winning streak at the 2017 BET Awards, a show highlighted by 1990s R&B and groups popular in that decade, as well as five wins for Beyoncé.
Ma, who was released from prison in 2014, won best female hip hop artist on Sunday in Los Angeles, an award Minaj has won since 2010. Ma last won the prize in 2005, and was sentenced to prison three years later after she shot a former friend after accusing her of theft.
“I wanna thank God first and foremost,” said Ma, who named two correctional facilities in her speech and thanked her mentor Fat Joe and husband-rapper Papoose. “You can make mistakes and come back.”
At the live show at the Microsoft Theater, 1990s R&B favourites New Edition and Xscape were the most welcomed performers of the night.
New Edition, whose threepart biopic was a white-hot ratings success for BET earlier this year, earned the lifetime achievement award and received a lengthy tribute.
Kendrick Lamar surprised the audience when he performed with Future and won best male hip hop artist. He gave a shout out to fellow nominee Chance the Rapper, who earned the humanitarian award at the age of 24. Chance also won best new artist and best collaboration.
In a taped message, Michelle Obama honoured Chance, who has raised $2 million for Chicago public schools. The former first lady said she and Barack Obama knew Chance “since he was a baby rapper”.
“Chance is showing our young people that they matter,” she said. “Because of you, countless young people will grow up believing in themselves.”
Beyoncé, who reportedly gave birth to twins earlier this month, although she hasn’t commented, was the top nominee with seven. When it was announced that she had won the viewers’ choice award, Chloe x Halle – the young duo signed to Beyoncé – recited a speech given to them from the pop star.
Queen Bey was the big winner with five awards, also taking home album of the year for Lemonade, best female R&B/pop artist and video director of the year for Sorry.
Former BET executive Stephen Hill was praised throughout the night with kind words from Bruno Mars and Bobby Brown. – AP
RETURN: Remy Ma