Carrie Underwood won big at the 2016 American Music Awards, taking home two awards.
Other big winners included Blake Shelton, Tim McGraw and Florida Georgia Line, though some thought Drake stole the show by dominating the Rap and Hip-Hop category and making multiple appearances throughout the night. His first time on stage turned into an impromptu Degrassi reunion as he found himself sharing the stage with former co-star Nina Dobrev. Later in the night, he starred in a new commercial — a follow-up to the ad that went viral last year featuring Taylor Swift rapping along to “Jumpman” on a treadmill — and falling flat on her face.
Green Day also raised some eyebrows during its performance of “Bang Bang” by adding the chant, “No Trump, no KKK, no fascist USA,” in reference to the president-elect’s endorsement by various white supremacists and the questionable background of some of his cabinet appointments.
Here are some of the other highlights:
- Co-hosts Gigi Hadid and Jay Pharaoh kicked things off by cracking some topical jokes about the election. In the opening routine, they did Donald and Melania Trump impressions, joking that Bruno Mars and Mark Ronson’s hit song was originally going to be called “Uptown Trump.”
- The Weeknd performed “Starboy” in a labyrinth of clear crystals.
- Rick Ross brought out August Alsina, Nicki Minaj and Chris Brown to perform “Do You Mind.”
- The Chainsmokers and Halsey performed their hit “Closer.”
- Selena Gomez made her first public appearance in months and gave a heartfelt speech thanking the fans for their unwavering support and saying how she wants people to be happy.
- Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj performed “Side to Side.”
- Maroon 5 and Kendrick Lamar closed out the show by performing “Don’t Wanna Know” live for the first time ever.
Favorite Artist — Rap/Hip-Hop: Drake
New Artist of the Year Zayn
Favorite Song – Country: Tim McGraw – “Humble and Kind”
Collaboration of the Year: Fifth Harmony featuring Ty Dolla Sign “Work From Home”
Favorite Artist — EDM: The Chainsmokers
Favorite Album – Rap/Hip-Hop: Drake – Views
Favorite Duo or Group – Pop/Rock: Twenty One Pilots
Artist of the Year: Ariana Grande
Favorite Female Artist – Pop/Rock: Selena Gomez
Favorite Duo or Group – Country: Florida Georgia Line
Favorite Artist – Alternative Rock: Twenty One Pilots
Top Soundtrack: Purple Rain – Prince
Tour of the Year: Beyonce – Formation
Video of the Year: Justin Bieber – “Sorry”
Favorite Male Artist – Pop/Rock: Justin Bieber
Favorite Album – Pop/Rock: Justin Bieber – Purpose
Favorite Song – Pop/Rock: Justin Bieber – “Love Yourself”
Favorite Male Artist – Country: Blake Shelton
Favorite Female Artist – Country: Carrie Underwood
Favorite Album – Country: Carrie Underwood – Storyteller
Favorite Song – Rap/Hip-Hop: Drake – “Hotline Bling”
Favorite Male Artist – Soul/R&B: Chris Brown
Favorite Female Artist – Soul/R&B: Rihanna
Favorite Album – Soul/R&B: Rihanna – Anti
Favorite Song Soul/R&B: Rihanna – “Work”
Favorite Artist – Adult Contemporary: Adele
Favorite Artist – Latin: Enrique Iglesias
Favorite Artist Contemporary Inspirational: Hillsong United