Rodrigo leads Billboard awards, Blige named the 'Icon,' and Wallen and Scott perform

  • Mary J. Blige accepts the Icon Award at the Billboard Music Awards on Sunday at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

    Mary J. Blige accepts the Icon Award at the Billboard Music Awards on Sunday at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. Associated press

  • Becky G performs at the Billboard Music Awards on Sunday.

    Becky G performs at the Billboard Music Awards on Sunday. Associated press

  • Olivia Rodrigo took home the most Billboard Music Awards on Sunday.

    Olivia Rodrigo took home the most Billboard Music Awards on Sunday. Associated press, April 3

 
 
Updated 5/15/2022 11:47 PM

Nineteen-year-old pop sensation Olivia Rodrigo continued her dominance of the music world Sunday, winning seven Billboard Music Awards including Top New Artist and Top Female Artist.

Rap titans Drake and Ye (formerly Kanye West) won five apiece. Drake's haul included the overall Top Artist award. All of Ye's awards came in Christian or gospel categories.

 

Winners from the rock world included The Rolling Stones, whose "No Filter" tour won two awards for concert sales. Elton John also shared the Top Dance/Electronic Song award with Dua Lipa for their duet on "Cold Heart (PNAU Remix)."

And it was no surprise what won Top Soundtrack: "Encanto," whose songs by Lin-Manuel Miranda became global sensations after the movie premiered on Disney+ last Christmas.

Mary J. Blige was given Billboard's Icon Award for being an influential music maker.

Doja Cat won top R&B artist and R&B female artist for the second consecutive year.

Taylor Swift -- who has the second most-ever award show wins with 29 -- won four awards. Bad Bunny received two wins, while R&B duo Silk Sonic, comprised of Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak, won their first-ever award for top R&B song through "Leave the Door Open."

by signing up you agree to our terms of service
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Becky G, who released the album "Esquemas" on Friday, performed her hit song "MAMIII," which topped the Billboard's Hot Latin Songs chart.

Other acts taking the stage included Miranda Lambert, Meghan Thee Stallion and Grammy Awards darlings Silk Sonic.

Travis Scott and Morgan Wallen made controversial performances. Wallen performed in his first major awards show after he was caught on camera using a racial slur. After not receiving a verbal introduction, the country star sat alongside his four-piece band and performed "Don't Think Jesus" then his chart-topping "Wasted on You," a single from his popular project "Dangerous: The Double Album."

Shortly after his performance, rapper Pusha T presented Wallen with the top country artist award.

"I want to say, 'Thank God.' And thank my fans. I got the best damn fans," said Wallen, who acknowledged his mother for accompanying him as his date to show. He also thanked for Billboard for inviting him. He did not mention last year's incident, which once found the disgraced singer rebuked by the music industry.

Shortly after Wallen's set, Scott made his first televised performance since a massive crowd surge killed 10 people and injured thousands at his Astroworld Festival in Houston in November last year. The rapper performed his single "Mafia" in an icy, polar-themed prerecorded set that was heavily censored.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Blige, known as the Queen of Hip-Hop Soul, was presented the Icon Award by Janet Jackson and escorted on stage by Sean "Diddy" Combs.

Blige said she was in a "dream right now" after she received the honor. She spoke about the journey of becoming an icon not being an easy feat during her stellar career.

"I've been on this journey for a long time, one that didn't always look the way you see me now," she said. "One that is filled with a lot of heartache and pain, but God helped me to channel those experiences and emotions in my music which is where I started in music."

• The Associated Press contributed to this report.

0 Comments
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 
Article Comments
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.