Hey people of the internet!!! How is your Monday…I know everyone loves Monday!!! (you may now sarcastically laugh…ok that’s enough). On today’s ‘Monday Memos’ we are going to recap what happened at the first ever ‘I Heart Music Awards’…and A LOT happened so let’s get started! Now normally I talk about the host in a separate section, but this award show didn’t really have a single host and instead focused on using several different presenters. I think Pitbull served as the host (I’m not sure if that’s official or not) because he gave a very short monologue at the top of the show (after his performance). He mainly joked about the LA Clipper scandal (which is an NBA team for those of you who don’t know anything about sports…#NoShame). That was about it for the hosting duties…so let’s get the awards (yay!).
Hip-Hop/R&B Song of the Year:
‘Pour it Out’ by Rihanna:
This was definitely a tough category, but if we’re being completely honest, it’s hard for Rihanna to lose anything. Why you ask? Well first of all she’s Rihanna which means she’s awesome, and secondly this year she’s had hit after hit from her latest album ‘Unapologetic’ (which charted at #1 on the Billboard 200 chart). So it’s easy to see why Rihanna deserved this award.
‘Timber’ by Pitbull feat. Ke$ha
‘Timber’ was performed at the top of the show (which I will speak about later…get excited!), and was certainly a crowd favorite. But, this is no surprise since it did chart at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart(as well as #1 on numerous other charts all over the world). Ke$ha also has a record of releasing numerous hit singles, so when you get two powerhouses together, you can’t expect anything else but collaboration gold.
‘Wrecking Ball’ by Miley Cyrus
Now if there is an artist who has had an intense year, it’s Miley. If you’ve ever listened to ‘Wrecking Ball’, then you know that the song is full of angst and sadness, and the perfect song to cry to while eating a tub of ice cream. I think that any song that can make you think this much definitely contains some AMAZING lyrics.
Best New Artist:
She’s 17, won two Grammys for her first single, which she co-wrote…yeah I would say that Lorde is the best new artist. She has also been able to make history in her home country of New Zealand by being the first solo act to get a debut single to chart #1 in the U.S. With all of this early success, I can only imagine what this young artist will achieve next.
Best Fan Army:
Rihanna (Rihanna’s Navy)
It’s no surprise that Rihanna won this award, because in order to have the success that she has had, you have to have a fiercely loyal fanbase. In her career thus far, Rihanna has been able to conquer music, movies, and has become a fashion icon for millions. ‘Rihanna’s Navy’ definitely came through on this one, and proved why they deserve this award.
With 3,803,044 VERY loyal instagram followers (and that’s just as of May 5, 2014), it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Austin took home this award. This talented young musician has been taking award shows (particularly fan voted award shows) by storm this year, and has proven that he is ready for a mainstream pop career. Using a social media platform to promote his music to his followers, he is already thinking like a mainstream musical artist, particularly when it comes to improving his online presence and expanding his social media reach with services similar to Nitreo. You can learn more about the service by searching for reviews online, or you can see nitreo reviewed here. With the release of his debut album ‘The Secret’ expected to drop later this month, I definitely think that Austin needs to make sure he has plenty of room in his trophy case.
Young Influencer Award:
She’s stared in a hit all teen Broadway production, on two hit Nickelodeon TV shows, and has now made her mark on Pop/R&B music (even drawing comparisons to Mariah Carey…yeah that’s intense), so you would think that it would be no surprise that Ariana received this award. However, it’s not only her impossibly perfect talent that has influence her fans, but also the fact that Ariana has cultivated a very intense connection with them, and even admits to becoming friends with some her fans after meeting them on Twitter. With such a close connection to their idol, it’s no surprise that Ariana is a large influence on her fans.
Alternative Rock Song of the Year:
‘Demons’ by Imagine Dragons
Ever since this song dropped on October 22nd, 2013 it has controlled the airwaves, and has continued to launch alternative rock band Imagine Dragons into the spotlight. This band continues to prove that they can release hit after hit (they even won a Grammy last year for their song ‘Radioactive’), so it’s easy to see how ‘Demons’ had a great chance of becoming the mega hit it has become.
Song of the Year:
‘Stay’ by Rihanna feat. Mikky Ekko
Do I really need to explain why this song won? If you own a radio then you know what a huge hit this has been for Rihanna and Mikky Ekko. This track has charted at #1 in numerous countries, and has been acclaimed by critics. Since this track followed up Rihanna’s very popular hit ‘Diamonds’, you know it had to be catchy, relatable, and still hold a bit of that edge that sets Rihanna apart from other radio artists. This song certainly delivers and also proves that Rihanna is more than capable of digging deep and delivering emotionally driven songs with truthfulness and passion.
Best Country Song:
Blake Shelton ‘Boys ‘Round Here’
Country superstar Blake Shelton has certainly had a huge hit with this track. It was a fun direction for Blake, but it also didn’t tray from the sound that has made his fans fall in love with him. The track reached #1 on the ‘U.S Billboard Country Airplay’, and was praised by critics for “taking a chance” with its’ sound.
EDM Song of the Year:
‘Wake Me Up’ by Avicii
If you didn’t know who this Swedish DJ/Producer was before, then you definitely knew who he was after the song was released on June 17th, 2013. This song not only launched Avicii, but also singer/songwriter Aloe Blacc (who co-wrote the track with Avicii). This song has definitely helped Avicii launch himself into the forefront of the rising EDM culture in mainstream music.
Until recently you may or not have known who this producer/singer/songwriter is but this year we all relieved a crash course in Pharrell 101. For nearly a decade, Pharrell has produced hits for artists such as: Gwen Stefani, Snoop Dogg, Nelly, Kanye West, Pitbull, Maroon 5, Fall Out Boy, Robin Thicke, Miley Cyrus, Beyoncé, Ed Sheeran, etc. Pharrell has been well known for years in the music industry, as an innovator due to his experimentation with different sounds, and his collaborations with artists from very diverse genres. Lately, Pharrell has taken his creativity to a new level, and is now also well known for his vocal ability and onstage showmanship (as well as his famous brown hat from the Grammys…you know which one). With such an established history and bright future, it is obvious that Pharrell will continue to make a lasting impression on the music industry.
Artist of the Year:
I think we’ve gone through all the reasons why Rihanna is the artist of the year. I mean with hit track after hit track, and the deep love of her fans, I don’t think that any other artist could have received this award.
Pitbull & G.R.L.:
Pitbull and American/British/Canadian girl group G.R.L. (which was formed by the ‘Pussycat Dolls’ mastermind Robin Antin), performed their new track ‘Wild Wild Love’. The members of G.R.L. wore cool black leather short shorts and some wore fun dresses. Pitbull wore a coral jacket with a peach shirt and white pants. The back screen displayed a brown sky, with small white clouds. The staging also included lots of flashing lights that got the crowd excited. As ‘Wild Wild Love’ ended, Pitbull began performing his hit track ‘Timber’. For this performance, dancers came out and added an energy boost to the already high energy performance. This was definitely a fun way to start the show.
Country superstar kept the energy high by performing his 200 hit ‘My Kinda Night’. Luke kept his outfit casual by wearing skinny jeans, a black t-shirt, and matching black baseball cap. His staging included lots if cool spotlights shooting out throughout the stage. Luke also brought his showmanship to the table by showing off fun dance moves, and interacting with the fans. He’s performance definitely made this our “kinda night”. Good job Luke!
Now if you own a radio and do not live under a rock, you know who Bastille is, and you’re guilty of car singing their hit ‘Pompeii’ one too many times( it’s ok we’ve all done it…and the song is definitely awesome enough to warrant that crazy look random strangers on the road give you as you’re driving). Bastille gave an amazing performance that included lots of cool flashing lights, and the lead singer assisting on the drums at different points of the song. The performance made an impression by being very memorable, and so intriguing that you couldn’t look away. I think that this performance proved that Bastille will become as famous as they want to be (yes it was THAT amazing!).
Ed Sheeran began his performance with an up tempo version of his 2012 (2011 in the U.K.) hit ‘The A Team’. The performance was shown via satellite from the ‘Hotel Cafe’ in Los Angeles, CA. He followed up this song with his newest hit ‘Sing’, which not only showed off his amazing vocal abilities, but also his guitar skills. It was a very fun performance to watch, and further cemented why Ed’s talent has been able to capture his fans’ hearts.
Ariana began her performance with her breakout hit ‘The Way’ (which you have DEFINITELY had hairbrush karaoke sessions too). Ariana came out wearing a black jazz with knee-high white go-go dancing style boots. She was accompanied by several male dancers who wore white shorts and black dress coats, enter background singers wore black dresses that matched Ariana dress except they wore black boots. The back screen had ‘Ariana’ written in large bright lights. As always, Ariana gave spectacular performance of ‘The Way’. She then changed into a sparkly black dress, her background singers wore black pants and white mid drifts, and her background dancers wore black shirts (some wore white shorts) and no shirts. After changing, Ariana sang her new hit song ‘Problem’, which of course she sang flawlessly, which warranted cheers from the crowd.
The most anticipated performance of the night was definitely the premiere of Michael Jackson’s debut single ‘Love Never Felt so Good’ off of his second posthumous (which means that it was released after his death) album ‘Xscape’. The track features Justin Timberlake, and was previously recorded by Johnny Mathis in 1984. The performance was really intricate, with numerous dancers who were dressed like Michael, and danced along with video of clips of Michael (which were shown on the back screens). Usher came out as the song began and danced along with the other dancers. It was really cool to see all of these talented dancers pay homage to Michael Jackson, and celebrate his work. The performance ended with a large poster falling over the screen, with the cover of Michael’s album on it. This was definitely the crowd favorite performance of the night.
Hip-Hop/Rap artist was up next with his track ‘California Love’. He wore a baseball cap, blue jeans, and a cool jacket. Before his performance he did a testimony about seeing a Dr. Dre and Tupac shoot a music video in his hometown of Compton, CA. His song gave off a very 80s meets Run DMC meets Will Smith vibe, and the performer was a lot of fun to watch.
30 Seconds to Mars:
30 Seconds to Mars performed their new song ‘City of Angels’ (I’ll give you one chance to guess which city the song is about…well go on take a guess…you know you know it). The performance included testimonies from celebrities and regular people trying to have a career in LA on the good and bad things about the city (these testimonies were also in the band’s music video for the song). The performance had a very haunting vibe about it, and ended with a superman impersonator saying, “Do I think I’ll make it in the industry? Only if I keep believing”.
Next Shakira performed her new song ‘Empire’. The staging was very elaborate and perfectly matched the vibe of the song. The back screen had images of leaves falling behind a black background that alternated between black, pink, and yellow. Then once the chorus hit, colored smoke was released. Shakiest certainly got really into her performance, which made the crowd go crazy for her. Shakira also brought a very rock and road vibe to her performance at one point, when he grabbed her mic stand, turned it upside down, and sang into it while holding the mic above her head. It was a very fun and unforgettable performance to watch.
Next up was Blake Shelton who performed his new track ‘Doing What She Likes’. The staging was very simple, with a back screen that changed colors from blue to yellow, with the image of a palm tree on the screen. Blake accompanied his band on the guitar, and definitely gave a fun performance that the audience just loved.
Arcade Fire performed their track ‘Normal Person’ (which was shown via video). Their performance included cool purple lights that lit up the stage, and the audience wearing cool foam fingers. This high energy performance was a lot of fun to watch, and continued the high energy trend that ruled the evening.
The last performance of the night was given by Pharrell Williams who did a medley of several of his hit tracks. He began his performance with his track ‘Come Get it Bae’ off of his album ‘GIRL’. The staging was definitely the most elaborate of the night, and included multiple stages, and numerous dancers who wore very futuristic ‘Jetsons’ style outfits. The next song that was performed was the 2013 hit ‘Blurred Lines’. While singing this song, Pharrell went into the area that the celebrities were sitting, and sang to them. The next song that was performed was another big hit from 2013 entitled ‘Get Lucky’. While this track played, the dancers went into a circle of mirrors and danced to the song. The finally song that was fine was ‘Happy’ (which was included in the ‘Despicable Me’ soundtrack, as well as ‘GIRL’). The dancers reemerge in letterman jackets, which have them a very 50s vibe, and was a nice finishing touch to an amazing number.
This award show also contained numerous testimonies from artists such as Iggy Azalea, Coldplay, John Legend, Lady Gaga, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Pete Wentz of Fallout Boy, Adam Levine of Maroon 5, Rita Ora, and many more. the artists spoke about their experiences in LA, their first times encountering the city, and the lessons that they’ve learned from their failures and triumphs in the music business.
- All photos and information used in this blog belong to I Heart Music Awards, LA Clippers, all involved with the LA Clippers, Rihanna, Pitbull, Ke$ha, Miley Cyrus, Lorde, Austin Mahone, Instagram, Ariana Grande, Imagine Dragons, Mikky Ekko, Blake Shelton, Avicii, Aloe Blacc, Pharrell Williams, Grammys, Gwen Stefani, Snoop Dogg, Nelly, Kanye West, Pitbull, Maroon 5, Fall Out Boy, Robin Thicke, Miley Cyrus, Beyoncé, Ed Sheeran, G.R.L., Luke Bryan, Robin Antin, Bastille, Ed Sheeran, Michael Jackson, Kendrick Lamar, Dr. Dre, Tupac, 30 Seconds to Mars, Shakira, Arcade Fire, Coldplay, John Legend, Lady Gaga, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Pete Wentz, Adam Levine, Fallout Boy, Maroon 5, Rita Ora, anyone involved in any way, shape, or form in the production, planning, or implementation of the I Heart Music Awards, popdust.com, and all other original owners. I do not own anything in this blog. All opinions expressed in this blog are my own. I wrote this blog for entertainment purposes and no copyright infringement is intended.
Hello people of the internet!!! On today’s ‘Monday Memos’, we are going to discuss my predictions for the 2014 ACM awards! Now this is a really big night for country music, and honestly all of the nominees deserve the various awards. However, I made a list for some of the artists that I believed went above and beyond the norm this year. Are y’all ready!?! Then let’s go!!!
Entertainer of the Year: George Strait
Although all of the nominees deserve this award, I definitely think that “King” George will walk away with it this year. His ‘Love is Everything’ album made its debut at #2 on the Billboard 200 charts and #1 on the Country Albums chart. This album further solidified George Strait’s place in history by becoming his 18th top 10 album on the Billboard 200 chart (tying him with Paul McCartney for the fourth-most top 10 albums among male artists in history). I think that this accomplishment alone is a true testament to George Strait’s career, also since this is his last opportunity to win this award, one more ACM award would be the perfect ended to a legendary career.
Male Vocalist of the Year: Luke Bryan
With mega hits this year such as: ‘Crash My Party’ (which peaked at #2 on the U.S. charts), ‘That’s My Kind of Night’, ‘Drink a Beer’ (which both peaked at # 1 on the U.S. charts), ‘Play it Again’ (which peaked at #9 on the U.S. charts), and a feature on the hit Florida Georgia Line track ‘This is How We Roll’ (which has peaked at #1 on the U.S. Hot Country Songs), Luke Bryan has been an inescapable force this year. With his catchy party songs, and new country vocals, Luke has taken over the airwaves, and in doing so has definitely proved that he was the male voice that represented country music this year.
Female Vocalist of the Year: Miranda Lambert
Throughout the past few years, Miranda has certainly shown us that she represents country music with the upmost respect and passion. This year was certainly no different, due in part to her amazing breakout hits: ‘Mama’s Broken Heart’ (which is nominated for numerous awards at the ACMs, and has peaked at #20 on The Billboard charts, making this her highest peaking single to date, as of April 3rd, 2014), ‘All Kinds of Kinds’(which was praised by critics as “daring” and having a “meaningful and impacting message”), and ‘Automatic’ (which made its debut at #26 on the U.S. Billboard Country Airplay chart, making it Miranda’s highest debuting single to date, as of April 3, 2014). As if this weren’t enough, Miranda also had a hit duet with Keith Urban entitled ‘We Were Us’ (which peaked at #1 on the U.S. Billboard Country Airplay and U.S. Billboard Hot Country Songs charts). With all of these hits under her belt, I can’t see how any artist has represented country music in a better light than Miranda Lambert.
Vocal Duo of the Year: Florida Georgia Line
When you think of country music duos, there are only 3 words that you think of…do you have it?…that’s right Florida Georgia Line! They had us rocking all year long with their infectious tracks: ‘Cruise’ (which peaked at #1 on the U.S. Billboard Country charts, generated a remix featuring Hip-Hop/R&B vocalist Nelly that has yet to leave radio rotation, and lead them to global fame…not bad for a lead single!), ‘Get Your Shine On’, ‘Round Here’ (which both peaked at #1 on the U.S. Billboard Country charts), ‘Stay’, and ‘This is How We Roll’ Feat. Luke Bryan (which both peaked at #1 on the U.S. Billboard Country charts). With all of these hits and no signs that the momentum is stopping any time soon, is there really a better choice!?! Yeah I didn’t think so.
Vocal Group of the Year: Lady Antebellum
Ever since they first came on to the country music scene in 2007 with their debut single ‘Love Don’t Live Here’ (which peaked at #3 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart), Lady Antebellum have been an unstoppable force in country music. This past year they released their 5th studio album ‘Golden’, and the title perfectly describes the country group. ‘Golden’ produced a number of successful singles for the group, which included: ‘Downtown’, and ‘Compass’ (which peaked at #1 on the U.S. Billboard Country Airplay charts), and ‘Goodbye Town’ (which received praise from critics for its demonstration of the group’s continued growth). I believe that Lady Antebellum proves time and time again that they are the top tier group in Country Music, and they’re later album only further solidifies this.
Album of the Year: ‘Crash My Party’ by Luke Bryan
I think anyone who has followed Country Music this year knows that Luke Bryan has had a phenomenal run. Four must be a lucky number for Luke because his fourth studio album ‘Crash My Party’ had produced 4 hit singles. Throughout this album, Luke has shown his playful, party side (‘That’s My Kind of Night’), his romantic side (‘Crash My Party’ and ‘Play It Again’), and his soft and somber side (with ‘Drink a Beer’). With such a diverse album (which peaked at #1 on the Billboard 200 and U.S. Billboard Top Country Albums), I don’t see how another album could receive the distinction that comes with this award.
Single of the Year: ‘Mama’s Broken Heart’ by Miranda Lambert
Now this is a song that we’ve all heard all year long! This song has peaked at #2 on the U.S. Billboard Country Airplay and U.S. Billboard Hot Country Songs charts, and as of November 2013, has sold 1,521,000 copies (yeah that’s A LOT!!!!). The song also received positive reviews from critics, who raved about the track’s tone and lyrics. What I really loved about this song is that it showed that after all these years; Miranda still has the same spunk and sass that made audiences first fall in love with her.
Song of the Year: ‘Mama’s Broken Heart’ by Miranda Lambert
Ok…seriously consider how many times you’ve heard this song this year…exactly!!! This combined with everything that I wrote in the previous paragraph perfectly demonstrates why ‘Mama’s Broken Heart’ IS Country Music’s ‘Song of the Year’.
Video of the year: ‘Mama’s Broken Heart’ by Miranda Lambert
Honestly this is probably my favorite video of this year! I loved how she kept a tone of seriousness throughout the whole video, despite the fact that the lyrics were not serious at all. Miranda also had quite a few funny moments in this video where she played with her facial expressions. All in all, I really loved how this video showed just how comfortable Miranda is within her artistry, and also projected the confidence that the lyrics contain. If you haven’t seen this video, or just want to see it again, here you go: Miranda Lambert – Mama’s Broken Heart
Vocal event of the year: ‘We Were Us’ by Keith Urban and Miranda Lambert
Now you know that anything that Miranda Lambert is connected with is automatically going to be a HUGE success…and this song is no exception. What I really loved about this duet was Miranda and Keith’s ability to harmonize beautifully, and make this track a standout on the radio. These two artists certainly deserve all of the acclaim in the world because of this duet, and Keith’s phenomenal guitar skills on the track make this a “vocal event” that will not soon be forgotten.
National on Air Personality: Kix Brooks: ‘American Country Countdown with Kix Brooks’
This is definitely a no brainer. Anyone who turns on the radio at the end of the week has heard Kix Brooks’ show. The former second half of the country super duo ‘Brooks and Dunn’ has certainly made his mark on the other side of radio. His charismatic personality and charm has allowed audience’s to fall in love with him in a new way, and for these and numerous other reasons, proves that he definitely deserve this award.
- All photos and information used in this blog belong to the ACM Awards, George Strait, Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Florida Georgia Line, Lady Antebellum, Keith Urban, Kix Brooks, American Country Countdown with Kix Brooks, Brooks and Dunn, MCA (MCA Nashville), Capitol Nashville, Epic Nashville, Columbia Nashville, RCA Records Nashville, Republic Nashville, Capitol Nashville, Kobalt, Hit Red/Capitol Records, Arista Nashville, Jeff Stevens, Brandy Clark, Shane McAnally, Kacey Musgraves, Frank Liddell, Glenn Worf, Chuck Ainlay, Trey Fanjoy, Nicolle Galyon, Jimmy Robbins, Jon Nite, Keith Urban, Nathan Chapman, any and all radio stations and/or producers associated with the American Country Countdown with Kix Brooks, ticketing.acmcountry.com, and all other original owners. I do not own anything in this blog. All opinions expressed in this blog are my own. I wrote this blog for entertainment purposes and no copyright infringement is intended.
Hello people of the internet!!! On last night’s (November 24, 2013) AMAs, A LOT of stuff happened. Ok, ready? Let’s get started!
This year’s AMAs were hosted by Latin rap superstar Pitbull, who certainly seemed to be appreciative of his hosting gig. Pitbull said that it was a miracle that he was hosting the award show, and that he was living the American dream. Although Pitbull’s opening monologue was short, he did make a pop culture reference when he asked several female dancers to come on stage to twerk for the crowd. He also explained that twerking was not a new concept, and stated various names that twerking has been giving, previous to Miley Cyrus adopting the dance.
- Favorite Pop/Rock Male Artist: Justin Timberlake
With the tremendous success of his latest 2 part album ‘The 20/20 Experience’, it’s obvious why Justin tops pop this year.
- Favorite Soul/R&B Female Artist: Rihanna
Once again Rihanna proves why she is an unstoppable force in the music industry, by adding yet another award to her long list of achievements.
- Favorite Country Album: ‘Red’ by Taylor Swift
The golden girl strikes again (and no I was not referring to her hair color) ! The first award that Taylor won last night was so appropriate and well deserved.
- Favorite Rap/Hip Hop Album: ‘The Heist’ by Ryan Lewis & Macklemore
This team has had an iron claw on radio since their song ‘Thrift Shop’ made thrift stores cool (now you know you want to go to a thrift store and just start rapping…yes you do, don’t deny it!). They have had similar success with their numerous other tracks such as ‘Same Love’ and ‘Can’t Hold Us’, so it’s obvious why they would take this award home.
- Favorite Alternative Rock Artist: Imagine Dragons
One thing that keeps this band on top is their constant habit to always evolve musically. Even though they had us hooked when their hit song ‘It’s Time’ first hit the airways, Imagine Dragon has continued to push their musical capabilities with their equally infectious tracks ‘Radioactive’ and ‘Demons’.
- Favorite Latin Music Artist: Marc Anthony
For the past few decades Marc Anthony has been an icon in Latin and mainstream music, so it’s not surprising that fans still love him.
- Favorite Pop/Rock Album: ‘Take Me Home’ by One Direction
C’mon was it ever a question that this super group would win! Since their U.S. debut in 2011 with the smash ‘What Makes You Beautiful’, this boy band has had an iron grip on the hearts of U.S fans. This was One Direction’s first AMA, and as if that wasn’t special enough, they were the only British group of the night to win an American Music Award.
- Favorite New Artist of the Year: Ariana Grande
This powerhouse vocalist has been compared to many iconic female vocalists, and if this year is any indication, she will have a very long and successful career. At only 20 years old, Ariana has had a role on a successful Broadway musical, has been on two highly successful TV shows, and has had a number 1 album. So this is a girl you should definitely keep your eye on, and if you haven’t, pick up her debut album ‘Yours Truly’.
At the ripe old age of 25, super star Rihanna won the 1st ever Icon Award last night. With many accolades which include: six Grammy Awards, 12 number one singles, and the honor of being Billboard’s highest selling digital artist of the 2000s, it is obvious to see why Rihanna is a musical icon. The award was made extra special because Rihanna’s mother presented the award to her (Ok, everyone say AWWWWWWW!), so last night was a good night to be Rihanna, good job girl!
- Favorite Soul/R&B Male Artist: Justin Timberlake
Since 1993, when a fresh faced young boy named Justin Timberlake appeared on ‘The Mickey Mouse Club’, he has had full control of the hearts of fans. From his time as a member of the highly successful boy band N’ Sync, to his even more successful solo career, Justin’s iron grip on the music industry has only tightened with age. And I have to say that it was so funny when Justin won, he walked over to Taylor Swift and started mouthing “Oh my god, oh my god” (yes, my words exactly Justin).
- Favorite Country Female Artist: Taylor Swift
Ok, for 1 minute we’re going to pretend that this was a surprise…ok minute over now back to the blog. Well, Taylor had such a successful night last night, adding 4 more awards to her large collections (Have you ever wondered how many award shelves she must have?).
- Favorite Single of the Year: ‘Cruise’ by Florida Georgia Line Feat. Nelly
This cross-over track has controlled mainstream and country radio for the last year, and has turned country duo Florida Georgia Line into a household name. With all of this considered, it makes perfect sense that this song won the AMAs first ever ‘Single of the Year’ award.
- Favorite Soul/R&B Album: Justin Timberlake
Yes Justin Timberlake won again! (It was a good night to be Justin Timberlake! GO Justin GO Justin! ok my fangirl moment is over).
- Favorite Electronic Dance Music Artist: Avicii
This has been a huge year for electronic dance music, and Avicii’s mega hit ‘Wake Me Up’, featuring vocalist Aloe Blacc, has certainly put him in the fore front of the minds of music lovers.
- Favorite Country Male Artist: Luke Bryan
The country superstar has been burning up the charts, as well as celebrating a very successful year with a lot of awards. It seems that fans just can’t get enough of this rising king of country.
- Favorite Pop/Rock Band/Duo/Group: One Direction
Now when you say the words ‘favorite’, ‘pop’, ‘group’, you gotta think of One Direction. These guys have gone from reality show contestants to full-fledged pop superstars, and with the release of yet another #1 album, it’s obvious that there is no stopping these talented guys (good job Simon Cowell, we are forever in debt to you!).
- Favorite Country Group: Lady Antebellum
This group has had quite the year, from releasing a successful album, to performing with the legendary Stevie Nicks; this group is truly making their mark on music history.
- Favorite Artist of the Year: Taylor Swift
Just when you think that Taylor can’t do anything else to surprise us, she does something amazing like this. Good job Taylor, after all your success with ‘Red’ you deserve this award (c’mon you know she does…don’t be mean)
The following awards were not presented during the actual award show:
- Favorite Female Artist-Pop/Rock:
This award shows that Taylor’s music has now gone beyond genre restrictions, and that her fans now span an extremely large demographic.
- Favorite Artist-Adult Contemporary:
From their hit 2002 album ‘Songs about Jane’, this rock band has had the hearts and ears of fans worldwide. With front man Adam Levine’s participation on the hit NBC show ‘The Voice’, this band has only gotten more and more popular.
- Favorite Artist-Contemporary Inspirational: Matthew West
This super star has been taking his fans “to church” ever since his award winning 2003 debut album ‘Happy’. Matthew has also written tracks for numerous Christian and mainstream acts (such as Rascal Flatts, Billy Ray Cyrus, and country music legend Vince Gill).
- Top Soundtrack: Pitch Perfect
Ok on the count of three everyone say YESSSSS. Ready? One, two, oh I can’t wait YESSSSS! You know you’ve been spending the past year quoting every line form this movie, and singing every song. So of course it would make sense that this movie is so successful I mean it brought us Fat Amy right?! You may now jump in the air and fangirl…ok time’s up.
There were so many amazing performances this year so let’s get started!
Katy Perry kicked off the show with a performance of her hit song ‘Unconditionally’. The performance had a Japanese theme, complete with Katy and her dancers wearing beautiful, multicolored kimonos, and dancing with fans. The screens behind Katy had visuals of Japanese lanterns rising up, which helped the overall effect of the performance. There was also a Zen garden on the stage, and midway through the performance, Katy danced with an umbrella as strobe lights shined around her. The performance ended with confetti falling from the ceiling, as some of the dancers did acrobatic tricks in the air. Katy then ascended the stairs, a smoke screen emerged, and then Katy disappeared. A very cool way to end a performance if you ask me!
- Next up was the super group of the moment, One Direction. The guys sang the track ‘Story of my Life’ one of the singles off of their latest hit record ‘Midnight Memories’. The staging consisted of several small light bulbs which resembled candles, and gave a very intimate feel to the performance. The guys mostly stood still during their performance, but in typical 1D fashion, they looked as if they were singing to every individual girl in the audience. Such a solid performance by the guys on their big night!
- Ariana Grande was the next performer, and even though she tweeted that she was extremely nervous about her performance, she certainly didn’t show it. Ariana sang a very small portion of her hit song ‘The Way’, and then dove into a full rendition of her 50’s inspired hit ‘Tattooed Heart’. The throwback style performance was made complete with 4 backup singers, who all sang with old school 50’s style mics (you know the one’s that can’t be taken off of their stand, but look really cool. Oh and Ariana also sang with this kind of mic, so it made her performance that much more authentic). When Ariana finished performing, she received a standing ovation, and it was definitely deserved, because her voice was so strong and precise, despite the fact that she has been performing A LOT…don’t you wish you were this amazing? I sure do!
- Imagine Dragons were up next, and they definitely brought the rock and roll with them. Their set started with their newest hit ‘Demons’, which included cool blue lights and a lot of smoke on the stage. They then transitioned into their song ‘Radioactive’, which included red lights and yeah you guessed it smoke! At another part of the performance, all the members of the band had a drum solo, so that was so different and cool!
- The man of the honor was up next…yup you guessed it Pitbull! Pop star Ke$ha joined him on their hit song ‘Timber’ with several dancers on stage with them. The staging consisted of two staircases, and there was a lot of really cool fire shooting all over the stage. The pressure was definitely on for Pitbull to deliver on this performance because of his job as host, and….he delivered. Two thumbs up!
- Justin Timberlake was up next and as always he delivered. JT sang the track ‘Drink You Away’, one of the songs off of his album ‘The 20/20 Experience’. He introduced himself as Justin Timberlake and the Tennessee Kids, and the band included several backup singers, and instrumentalist. Justin also played the guitar during his performance (he sings, dances, acts, writes music, plays guitar, seriously what can this guy not do!). The performance once again proved that this super star isn’t going anywhere!
- Country duo Florida Georgia Line performed their infectious cross-over hit ‘Cruise’ with hip hop star Nelly next. All three guys did an amazing job performing the song, and once the song was completed, they transitioned into singing Nelly’s 2001 hit ‘Ride wit Me’, which was unexpected, but was also a very cool transition. Since Florida Georgia Line and Nelly have been performing this song on award shows all year, it was nice to see them do something different with this performance.
- AMA Icon award .winner Rihanna performed her super hit ‘Diamonds’ next, and she definitely “shined bright like a diamond” (I’m sorry I had to say it). Rihanna wore a beautiful black dress, a pearl chocker, pearl barrettes, and diamond earrings, which made her performance, look very elegant. Between the stunning ensemble that Rihanna wore, and her incredible vocals, Rihanna proved that she is a musical icon!
- Next up was Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, who performed live from Miami via satellite feed (don’t you just love technology!). The two performed their latest hit ‘Can’t Hold Us’, and their staging had lights of various colors, and some of the lyrics appeared on the screen behind them. They brought a lot of energy to their performance (as always!), and proved why they deserved such a great year (because c’mon, 2013 was a very good year for these guys!).
- Multi-talented superstar Jennifer Lopez performed next, with an amazing tribute to late Cuban superstar Celia Cruz. JLo performed a medley of some of the late superstar’s hit songs. Her performance showcased numerous dancers doing many Latin style dances, and JLo (who had 3 quick changes during the performance) proved that her dancing skills haven’t lost a beat during her many years in the industry. She did many difficult dances, including one move at the end of her performance where she was lifted into the air by her partner, and ended in a plank position above his head. This performance was actually my favorite of the night, you gotta love her.
- Great Big World and Christina Aguilera performed their chart topper ‘Say Something’ next, and it was pure magic. My favorite thing about their performance was the fact that the two acts have such distinct voices; however their voices still blend together so perfectly.
- Hip Hop artist Kendrick Lamar performed his hit track ‘Swimming Pools (Drank)’ next and showed that he is one to watch in hip hop. The artist is currently opening for Kanye West, and his performance at the AMAS last night demonstrated that he won’t remain an opening act for very long.
- Country superstar Luke Bryan performed his hit ‘My Kinda Night’ next, and he certainly received a warm welcome form the crowd. The back screen behind Luke had a ring pattern that grew and then collapsed (it sort of reminded me of a screensaver, it was really cool). The staging also consisted of lots of red and white lights, and of course included Luke’s signature dancing. All in all it was a very fun performance, that made you wanna get up and dance.
- Iconic R&B group TLC made a special appearance next, and performed their hit ‘Waterfalls’ with the assistance of rap/hip hop artist Lil’ Mama. The group performed all of the original dance moves from the ‘Waterfalls’ music video, and Lil’ Mama did an excellent job performing the rapping segment of the song. At the end of the performance, the back screen showed a photo of the late Lisa “Left-Eye” Lopes, which was a beautiful touch to the performance. The performance itself was amazing, and showed just how great T-Boz and Chili are, due to the fact that they can still perform the iconic song with such precession and skill, even after all these years.
So all in all, the AMAs were full of exciting moments and amazing musical numbers. The show definitely did not disappoint, and made me excited for next year.
- All photos and information used in this blog belong to all those who have any part of the production, conception, implementation, or are in any other way involved with the AMA awards, Pitbull, Justin Timberlake, all those involved in the production, conception, implementation, or are in any other way involved with the following albums or singles: The 20/20 Experience, Red, The Heist, Take me Home, Songs of Jane, Thrift Shop, It’s Time, Can’t Stop Us, Yours Truly, Same Love, Radioactive, Demons, What Makes You Beautiful, Cruise, Wake Me Up, and Happy, Miley Cyrus, Rihanna, Taylor Swift, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, Imagine Dragons, Marc Anthony, One Direction, Ariana Grande, The Mickey Mouse Club, N’ Sync, Nelly, Florida Georgia Line, Avicii, Aleo Blacc, Luke Bryan, Simon Cowell, Lady Antebellum, Stevie Nicks, Maroon 5, Adam Levine, Matthew West, Fat Amy, Rascal Flatts, Billy Ray Cyrus, Vince Gill, all of the individuals, labels, and other corporations associated with any and all artists, bands, groups, and individuals mentioned in this blog post, and all other original owners. I do not own anything in this blog. All opinions expressed in this blog are my own. I wrote this blog for entertainment purposes and no copyright infringement is intended.