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Though comprised of seasoned writers who share a similar outlook on Urban Pop culture, the idiosyncrasies of the TGJ team members often lend for quite heated debates “behind the scenes” about the hottest topics.
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Today’s roundtable topic asks each anchor their thoughts on the…
2020 Billboard Music Awards
Award shows in the current climate have been a mixed bag. So, it was always going to be interesting to see how the Billboard Music Awards would show up and show out during such a unique place in time.
Unlike many of its rival ceremonies, the BBMAs shunned the virtual approach in favor of a more traditional setup — albeit without an audience.
And while it didn’t make a world of difference, it was refreshing seeing something more akin to what we’re used to.
For me, the night’s MVP was Brandy.
She blazed the stage with an epic medley – which included two new gems ‘Borderline’ and ‘No Tomorrow.’ Indeed, despite deliberately driving in a more understated direction, she brought the heat with her confidence, stellar vocals, and band (who were JAMMING).
Elsewhere, Doja Cat electrified with her cabaret-kissed medley of inescapable bops. Make no mistake about it, she is a bonafide performer and is meeting the moment ten-fold with these live offerings of late.
The ever-dependable En Vogue lived up to their billing with a timely performance of ‘Free Your Mind.’ While BTS were a treat too.
Beyond that, slay moments were few and far between.
Demi Lovato‘s woke moment, well-intended as it was, sent me to sleep. Similarly, while I applaud Alicia Keys’ commitment to her campaign, she’d have served herself better belting a different song.
Also the show’s strict (but understandable) adherence to its original tracking period (the cut-off for which was more than six months ago) limited its mirroring of the music landscape in the here and now. From winners to performers.
Still, I applaud the BBMAs for continuing to give veterans the look-see other shows don’t. Because, in the process, it’s proving that the more seasoned acts – more times than not – put on the best spectacles.
It’s bittersweet watching award ceremonies in these times. Indeed, when so versed in what they’re supposed be, it’s hard to fully receive what they’ve become.
Still, the Billboard Music Awards managed to gifted viewers a commendable spectacle.
Doja Cat played absolutely no games during her Vegas showgirl-inspired performance. It’s amazing that she is finally able to show the world the performer she’s always been.
John Legend’s touching tribute to wife Chrissy Teigen was another highlight of mine, but the true gem of the night was Brandy’s surprisingly high-octane rendition of ‘Borderline.’
Unfortunately, Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande weren’t around to rep Pop, but BTS – as always – did their thing with their performance of ‘Dynamite’. As did Demi Lovato with a politically charged moment.
On the winner front, it was fantastic Billie Eilish getting her flowers once and again, as well as the unstoppable Cardi B and Lizzo.
Here’s hoping we’ll see a return to form for the next award show – even if it sounds unlikely at this point.
The Billboard Music Awards typically veer one direction or another: that being too cringe-worthy to watch or too enticing to avert the gaze. However, this year it was neither cringe-worthy nor entrancing. Rather, it was split down the middle with some stunning performances followed by sleep-inducing moments.
As for who delivered? Well, I never thought I’d say this but, Doja Cat came through with her medley of ‘Juicy,’ ‘Say So,’ and ‘Like That.’ The cabaret-inspired performance introduced some welcome production changes in the form of string instrumentals and the best dancing of the night. I am not a dancer by any means, but her performance made me want to get up and break my hip trying.
Elsewhere, music veterans En Vogue delivered a fiery rendition of ‘Free Your Mind’ so hot that it’s a surprise that the sprinkler system in the building did not go off. Not to mention the little interpolation of ‘This Is America’ by Childish Gambino towards the end of the song really drove home the social message in time when we need it the most.
Despite being raised on country music and still enjoying it to this day, Luke Combs‘ performance of ‘Better Together’ was bland enough that that bread looked at it and said “I have more spice than that.”
But no performance could top the disaster that was Sia‘s showing. Her performance of ‘Courage to Change’ (a repackaged P!nk song from her ‘Hurts 2 B Human’ album that Sia wrote), was a vocal disaster. She muffled her way through what was supposed to be a soaring ballad and stayed stiff as a board on stage. Granted, she has never been one to move, but a dancer or two would have made it at least somewhat interesting to watch.
At the end of the day, the ladies ruled the day, proving that girl power is stronger than the rest.
Do you agree with our picks? Who was spot on? Let us know your thoughts on the latest TGJ Roundtable and your thoughts on the 2020 BBMAs.