The American Music Awards were held this past Monday at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.
The American Music Awards, or AMAs, were first created for ABC by television legend Dick Clark in 1973 after the television network lost its contract to air the Grammy Awards. It is the first of the Big Three music award shows held annually, followed by the Grammy Awards and the Billboard Music Awards. Until the 2005 edition, the winners and the nominations were selected by members of the music industry, based on commercial performance, such as sales and airplay. Since the 2006 edition, winners have been determined by a poll of the public and fans, who can vote through the AMAs website, having 29 categories to vote on this year.
The record for most American Music Awards won is held by singer Taylor Swift, who has amassed twenty-nine awards. The record for most American Music Awards won by a male artist belongs to Michael Jackson, who collected twenty-six awards over his career. The record for most American Music Awards won by a group belongs to country group Alabama, who have collected twenty-three awards.
Singer and dancer Ciara hosted this years AMAs and performed two of her own singles later in the show. The beautiful host warmed up the crowd before singer Selena Gomez kicked off the night with her first live TV performance in two years. The former Barney and Friends star performed a pair of hits from her upcoming third studio album, beginning with an emotional rendition of her Justin Bieber-inspired ballad “Lose You to Love Me”, before getting the audience on its feet with her single “Look At Her Now”.
Best New Artist was awarded to singer Billie Eilish. The 17-year-old also picked up an award for Best Alternative Artist and performed her hit “All the Good Girls Go to Hell” surrounded by a lake of fire across the stage. The pyrotechnics made even more sense once fans saw the message on her T-shirt, which read ‘NO MUSIC ON A DEAD PLANET’. No surprise she’s already one of the highest-profile Generation Z voices sounding the alarm about climate change, using her first ever awards show performance to raise conversation. New Artist of the Year nominee and fan favourite Lizzo treated the roaring audience to her Grammy nominated single, “Jerome”. The singer was also nominated for Best Female Artist and Best Song Soul/R&B. Rapper Post Malone took home the Favorite Album Rap/Hip-Hop for his record “Hollywood’s Bleeding” and performed on stage with rapper Travis Scott and The Prince of Darkness himself, Ozzy Osbourne.
Although the night was filled with many winners and performances, the night belonged to Taylor Swift. The 29-year-old won a record-breaking six awards and was named Artist of the Year and Artist of the Decade. Introduced by the legendary Carole King, Swift’s performance was a reminder of all she’s recorded and accomplished over the years, especially when fellow artists Halsey and Camilla Cabello joined her on stage for a rousing rendition of “Shake It Off”. She was also joined during her performance by the famed ballerina Misty Copeland. In her acceptance speech, Swift said “This album felt like a new beginning. And I also really love my record label, Universal and Republic. Monte Lipman, Lucien Grainge, thank you for being so generous to me and allowing me to make whatever music I want to make.” Many fans and critics saw this as a direct nod to her highly publicised battle with former record label Big Machine.
In the spirit of closing out the decade, fans were treated to throwback performances by R&B diva Toni Braxton, who performed her 1996 hit “Unbreak My Heart” and Canadian country singer Shania Twain, who did acoustic versions of Swift’s “Shake It Off” and Drake‘s “God’s Plan” before launching into her 1997 hit, “Still The One”. Twain closed the night with her medley of songs and left us all reminiscing on the music of the last decade. As we begin to close the door on 2019, we at Spectrum FM look forward to what the new year will bring us in music and show stopping performances.
Join us next year for the 2020 American Music Awards!
Check out last year’s winners here.