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Fights, Guns and Awards: A Recap of The 2017 BET Awards

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The 2017 BET Awards wrapped up over the weekend, even though Meek Mill and Safaree’s fight, Lil Kim’s crew supposedly robbing someone and Chris Brown and Migos getting into it stole most of the headlines.

The Awards were hosted by comedian Leslie Jones. Her stand-up routine throughout the show was funny, relevant, interactive, and she had great energy. She told stories of her life coming up as a comedian through relatable skits and video packages and I believe she’s one of the best to host this show.

Bruno Mars opened the show with his song, “Perm,” from his 24K Magic album. Of course, he brought down the house with his high energy and dancing band. I think it’s time to start putting Bruno Mars alongside the greatest performers of our time.


Best Group – Migos

Migos, unsurprisingly, took this one home and they deserved it. From the Donald Glover shout out, to “Bad and Boujee” becoming #1, to having one of the best rap albums of this year, Migos have had an amazing year.

French Montana and Swae Lee performed their hit song, “Unforgettable” together. They recreated the Ugandan village where they filmed the video and even brought some of the dancers on stage.


Centric Award – Solange “Cranes In The Sky”

Snap it up!! #guccimane #keyshiakaoir #solange at the #betawards2017 #h2tentertainment

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I’m not sure what this award was for but Solange won. The only other person nominated that could have won it was Mary J Blige. Solange thanked the people that helped her and shouted out some of the new artists.


Best Gospel/Inspirational Award – Lecrae “Can’t Stop Me Now”

Lecrae, the only rapper nominated, won this award. He shouted out people like Chance the Rapper for fusing Gospel in their music and “inspiring the world.”

Post Malone took to the stage to perform “Congratulations” in a motorcycle-inspired outfit and Quavo joined him for his verse. It turned into a Migos concert with them performing “T-Shirt” in snowboarding outfits on a frozen tundra-themed stage. They switched to “Bad and Boujee” and had the entire crowd on their feet, singing every word.

Michael and Martellus Bennett, two NFL brothers, were honored with the “Shine A Light Award” for how outspoken they are against injustice and donating money to organizations that change negative perceptions and empower black women. Tamika Mallory was honored by Solange for her activism in upholding black women.

Trey Songz performed “Nobody But You” on a foggy stage singing to a woman. He then switches to “Animal” and the stage transformed into a scene with several women dancing that he joins in a furry robe. There was nothing special or stand out about it, just another typical Trey Songz performance.

Chris Brown performed “Privacy” first just in front of a microphone and then hyped it up for “Party” where he invited a bunch of backup dancers and reminded us he’s one of the best dancers in the game right now. Gucci Mane joined him for his verse much to the delight of Tyrese and several other audience members.


Best New Artist – Chance The Rapper

Definitely was not a surprise this went to Chance since he had an incredible year. It’s his first BET Award and he accepted it nicely, in a dapper suit not his usual mechanic like outfits.

Mary J Blige looked amazing a silver two piece that showed her, what Jamie Foxxx called “breakup body.” She started off with “Set You Free” and then turned it up for “Love Yourself.” Mary J proved that she is still the Queen of the R&B and surprisingly invited A$AP Rocky out for a remix of the song.


Best Male R&B/Pop Artist – Bruno Mars

Everyone thought Chris Brown had this award down but Bruno Mars’ 24K Magic album was amazing. Bruno recalled how well BET has treated him and thanked the fans for this award.

Big Sean was up next and he performed a blend of “Sacrifices, Moves, and Bounce Back.” I haven’t seen him perform at the BET Awards in a while and he did very well. He was the only rapper to perform alone but his tech background that showed multiple mirroring images of him captivated the audience. He had great breath control and showed he’s a rapper to contend with especially with his freestyle at the end.

The American Teen, Khalid, performed “Location” and had the whole audience vibing, specifically Eve from America’s Next Top Model and Keyshia Cole.

YoungStars Award – Yara Shahidi

She was obviously very nervous and I personally don’t know who she is but everyone on Twitter was very excited!

Xscape, who recently announced their reunion and took the stage to get us excited for their new album. They sang “Understanding,” “Who Can I Run To,” and “Just Kickin It” with people including Papoose singing every single word.

Future came out of course performing his hit “Mask Off in a masquerade ball theme set and Kendrick Lamar joined him for his verse on the remix. I thought Kendrick Lamar was going to go into a set of his songs but surprisingly he didn’t.

Tamar Braxton, in a gorgeous black form fitting dress, showed off her vocals in “My Man” where her emotional performance featuring couples on the stage arguing. She received a standing ovation.


Humanitarian Award – Chance The Rapper

Chance is the youngest person to ever receive this award and was honored for his admirable dedication to giving back to his community and empowering the youth. His peers such as Common, Jessie Williams, and even Michelle Obama were featured in the video package paying homage to him. Chance the Rapper called out Chase Bank, the government for putting people in jail for weed, and juries for not convicting officers for the innocent killings of black people and almost commits to changing himself by being a better father and family member.

Maxwell performed “Gods,” half of the song on the ground and on his knees, with a nice suit and sunglasses. He showed that he still has that voice we know and love.


Lifetime Achievement Award – New Edition

LaLa Anthony, Erykah Badu, Jimmy Jam, Usher, Tank, Tyrese, Babyface and so many others shared their admiration for New Edition and how they affected their lives. New Edition received this award for their influence on this generation and what they meant to music. Their biopic that was aired on BET, in an unprecedented tv series and this was the perfect time for them to receive this award.

To start off the dedication, kids performed “Candy Girl” in a Roxbury Talent Show themed stage. To showcase New Edition’s individual talent, it switched to Algee Smith performing a Ralph Tresvant song to Luke James performing Johnny Gill’s “My, My, My,” Woody McClain performing Bobby Brown’s “My Prerogative” complete with Bobby’s red jacket and dance moves, and then ended with all of them combining for “Poison”.

New Edition, after announcing they’ll be coming to a city near you, performed “Mr. Telephone Man” and of course “Can You Stand The Rain” which had everyone on their feet singing and ended with “If It Isn’t Love” complete with the entire choreography and everyone who’s played New Edition.


Best Male Hip Hop Artist – Kendrick Lamar

Everyone thought Chance the Rapper or Drake would win but Kendrick had one of the best albums out this year. He shouted out Chance The Rapper and told him to “keep God first” and also, of course, thanked TDE, his family, and God. He paid his respects to Prodigy and credits him as inspiration for his first mixtape when he was 16.

SZA was set to perform and started singing “Love Galore,” but something was wrong so Leslie stopped it and told jokes until they were ready. Without losing her spirit, SZA performed “Love Galore” amazingly in front of a grass themed stage with high energy and she looked amazing. She slowed it down for fan favorite, “The Weekend.”


Viewer’s Choice Award – Beyoncé “Sorry”

Anything that Beyoncé is nominated in she’s going to win, I personally think Bad And Boujee should have won because that was clearly the song of the year. Chloe and Hallie accepted the award on Beyonce’s behalf and read her note of gratitude.


Best Female Hip Hop Artist – Remy Ma

The ending, maybe, to the feud between Nicki Minaj and Remy Ma ended with Remy winning Best Female Hip-Hop Artist. Nicki Minaj didn’t drop an album this year, only features so it makes sense why she wouldn’t win because Remy Ma did drop an album with Fat Joe. She thanked her husband, Papoose, and many others and ended with a string of classless disses to Nicki Minaj.

The show ended with DJ Khaled bringing out Quavo, Chance the Rapper, Lil Wayne, and his son Ashad Khaled for “I’m The One.” in a beach-themed set.


 

COLLEGEHIPHOP Writer
Hip hop journalist