Janet Jackson hasn’t appeared on many TV reveals — so when the reclusive pop legend appeared with out warning in her prime hat and formal costume on the 2022 Billboard Music Awards Sunday to current her pal Mary J. Blige with a Lifetime Achievement Icon Award, she was greeted with A standing ovation on her half. Doja Cat, seated within the BBMAs viewers on the MGM Grand Backyard Enviornment in Las Vegas, appeared particularly startled, and her response immediately grew to become a meme.
It was a girls’ night time of followers and mutual appreciation on the BBMAs, when Jackson, who obtained an Icon award on the 2018 Billboard Awards, honored Blige this 12 months. What makes an emblem? I began. “Is it the ability to create, explore, and practically pioneer an entire musical genre? Is it the garnering of millions of loyal fans who breathe your art daily, the same fans you constantly show love to? Is it a multi-decade career filled with not just the hits, but those songs that make you feel a way certain when you hear it and take a certain look on your face?You know, the look that says,girl, yes! I understand! yes! The answer is all of the above. The answer is tonight’s winner of the 2022 Billboard Icon Award, Mary J. Blige.”
Jackson continued, quoting some of Blige’s most famous songs: “Mary J. Blige stands for truth. Her work has always given us comfort because she sings to me, she sings to you. I remember, but I won’t cry, because although sometimes it feels like it’s raining every day, it never I have more drama. I’m fine with my life, my life, my life, my life. In the sunshine, Marie has made a commitment to her fans to always be who she really is now — that’s true love.” When Blige then came out to give her own speech, Love returned, telling Jackson, “Speaking of icons, you’ve always been one of our biggest inspirations growing up.”
While Blige quipped at the beginning of her speech, “I have a lot to say, so please don’t roll ‘wrapped’ music on my stuff,” she seemed humbled in the presence of Jackson’s greatness and with the icon’s honor in her own right. “As in the world now, I think people think symbols were born this way, and they became legends overnight. That certainly isn’t the case,” she harassed. “It takes a lot of time, hard work, a lot of survival and trial and error, to achieve greatness. What the icon means to me is overcoming obstacles to achieve the unimaginable and being so impressed with the impact on so many people, that’s what I’ve always been. I’ve been on this journey for a long time – a journey that hasn’t always been what you see me now, one filled with so much heartache and pain. But God helped me turn those experiences and emotions into my music.”
Blige continued with a bit of humility, just moments after the BBMAs host accompanied Puff Daddy (also known as Diddy) to the podium: “When Andre Harrell and Puff Daddy of Uptown Records introduced the queen of hip-hop soul to the world, it marked the beginning of the movement. An inner city girl who gets to know her characters and can relate to everything I say. And every artist that got into the game wanted to do everything I was doing and still do to this day. I was awesome, and I still am. So the ghetto was so cool — and the people were. threatened So. And now everyone wants to become a cool ghetto.”
Blige triumphantly concluded, “The message of my music has at all times been that we’re not alone in our wrestle, and I am not alone now. For a very long time I have been trying to find real love, however I’ve lastly discovered my real love, and that real love is me. Who runs Mary J. Blige now?” I! However, she humbly added that “there is no me on the staff” and thanked the friends, family, and strong players in the industry who have supported her throughout her long journey – including the late Harrell “for becoming a member of these Schlobohm initiatives and giving us a want and luring me out,” her “massive brother” Diddy, and Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine “for inviting me to carry out on the Tremendous Bowl, as a result of I’m so grateful.”
Jackson and Blige may have stolen the show at this year’s Billboard Music Awards without even singing, but the three-hour television broadcast featured several performers, including Silk Sonic, Megan Thee Stallion, Ed Sheeran, Dan + Shay, and Machine Gun Kelly, Miranda Lambert and Ellie King, Florence + The Machine, Lato, Becky G, Maxwell (covers the unusual selection of “The Woman In My Life” to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the aforementioned Janet Jackson’s brother Michael excitement album) … and the controversial, Morgan, Elaine and Travis Scott, in their first televised shows since their respective scandals. It was Olivia Rodrigo, who won seven, and Drake, who won five.
For a full list of the 2022 Billboard Music Award winners, click here.
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