The city of Las Vegas was alight with amazing music last night as the industry’s best artists invaded the MGM Grand for the 2018 Billboard Music Awards. In addition to the unforgettable moments we’ve come to expect from this event, year after year, there was a common thread of recovery that seemed to run through the entire evening. From Ed Sheeran winning the Top Artist category (as well as five others) to Kelly Clarkson hosting the festivities to an amazing and inspiring performance from Macklemore, the power of the recovery process was on full display for the world to see. The night was truly one to remember.
Winners and More Winners
Other top winners who have successfully walked the path to recovery include Kendrick Lamar, who took top honors in multiple categories (Top Streaming Artist, Top Rap Artist, Top Rap Male Artist, Top Rap Album, Top Billboard 200 Album and Top Streaming Song (Audio)) and Bruno Mars who also ran the table, taking the gold in numerous categories (Top R&B Artist, Top R&B Male Artist, Top R&B Tour, Top R&B Album, and Top R&B Song). The night was opened with a poignant and painful call to action from host Kelly Clarkson behalf of those who lost their lives in the horrific Santa Fe, Texas school shooting that occurred just two days prior. She then performed an unforgettable medley of material from Kendrick Lamar, Ed Sheeran, Swift, Mendes and more.
Music, Activism and Recovery
This year’s Billboard Music Awards had a distinctly emotional tone, due in large part to the highly charged political climate and the tragic events that occurred in Santa Fe, Texas last Friday. No matter where one may fall on the political spectrum, it was deeply inspiring to see so many artists in recovery thrive and take their place at the pinnacle of the industry. Music and entertainment can often be a prism though which we view the world and take cultural cues of our time. At last night’s Billboard Music Awards, the message was loud and clear: anything is possible.