Billboard Music Awards recap

The 2017 Billboard Music Awards were full of emotional performances and impressive wins, including a record-setting 13 honors for Drake. The show was tight -- moving along at a solid pace -- while featuring fifteen performances. 

And with a smooch from his lady, Gwen Stefani, Blake Shelton took the trophy as Billboard’s “Top Country Artist.” “I had a good feeling,” Shelton said from the stage. “I felt like I was the luckiest guy in the room anyway, because Gwen is here with me.”

But yes – there were other country winners, too. For example, Kenny Chesney went into the live broadcast as a double winner. He took honors for Top Country Collaboration for his work with Pink on “Setting the World on Fire” as well as Top Country Tour. Other winners included:

Top Country Artist

  • Florida Georgia Line
  • Blake Shelton —WINNER
  • Keith Urban
  • Chris Stapleton
  • Jason Aldean

Top Country Tour

  • Luke Bryan
  • Kenny Chesney — WINNER
  • Dixie Chicks

Top Country Album

  • Jason Aldean, “They Don’t Know”
  • Florida Georgia Line, “Dig Your Roots”
  • Blake Shelton, “If I’m Honest”
  • Chris Stapleton, “Traveller” — WINNER
  • Keith Urban, “Ripcord”

Top Country Song

  • Kenny Chesney feat. Pink, “Setting the World on Fire”
  • Florida Georgia Line, “H.O.L.Y.” — THE WINNER
  • Florida Georgia Line feat. Tim McGraw, “May We All”
  • Little Big Town, “Better Man”
  • Keith Urban, “Blue Ain’t Your Color”

Top Country Collaboration

  • Dierks Bentley feat. Elle King, “Different for Girls”
  • Kenny Chesney feat. Pink, “Setting the World on Fire” — WINNER
  • Eric Church feat. Rhiannon Giddens, “Kill a Word”
  • Florida Georgia Line feat. Tim McGraw, “May We All”
  • Chris Young feat. Vince Gill, “Sober Saturday Night”

Here’s a recap of the night:

  • Drake delivered a fiery performance in the middle of the famous Bellagio fountains on Las Vegas Boulevard.
  • He may have scored himself a date with co-host Vanessa Hudgens after laying on the compliments during his acceptance speech for winning the Billboard 200 Album award for “Views.” At that point, Drake had already racked up 12 awards – 10 in the pre-telecast categories, and one earlier in the show for Top Male Artist.
  • Cher was presented with the Icon Award and followed it up with a high-powered performance of her iconic songs "Believe" and "If I Could Turn Back Time" -- sporting, fittingly, completely different looks for each performance -- a day after her 71st birthday.
  • The show opened with Nicki Minaj delivering a star-studded medley that included Lil Wayne, David Guetta and Jason Derulo. Minaj delivered a four-song medley that concluded with her recent single, "Regret In Your Tears."
  • Miley Cyrus and Camila Cabello both delivered live debuts of their new singles -- Cabello's first solo songs since leaving Fifth Harmony. She performed “I Have Question” while Miley shed some tears at the end of her performance of “Malibu.”
  • Lorde performed “Green Light” in what was described by many as an awkward night of karaoke.
  • Sam Hunt gave a strong performance of “Body Like a Back Road.”
  • John Legend sang “Surefire” and was then joined by Florida Georgia Line for a surprise rendition of “H.O.L.Y.”
  • Then there was Celine Dion, who performed "My Heart Can't Go On" twenty years after its initial prominence as the main song from Titanic. The performance was received with an extended standing ovation and was easily one of the standout moments of the night.
  • Sean "Diddy" Combs was also in the building to mark would have been The Notorious B.I.G.'s 45th birthday. "Biggie was the best rapper I ever had the chance to work with" Diddy told the crowd. "Watching him and seeing him work is something that words can't explain."
  • Bruno Mars deviated from the glitzy funk of previous award show performances and got passionate with his latest single "Versace On the Floor" toward the end of the show.
  • In the end though, it was Drake’s night with an amazing 13 wins. As he accepted the award for Top Artist (the final award of the night), Drake said, "Life is like toilet paper," Drake said while accepting his final award. "Either you're on a roll, or taking s--- from ass-----." Yeah, we "bleeped" him - so did the broadcast.

To see a complete winner list, CLICK HERE

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