Welp… that was all sorts of confusing and disappointing.
Kanye West just concluded tonight’s Billboard Music Awards and for most of us hip hop heads, we kept it on in the background for 3 hours to see ‘Ye shut it down with flames.
Unfortunately, the censors shut him down amidst Kanye’s now customary flames.
‘Ye began with “All Day” and ABC’s censors overreacted to the lyrics with silence for quite literally more than half of the song. It continued as Kanye went into “Black Skinhead” and to top it off, ‘Ye seemingly purposefully stood with the flames and behind some pyrotechnics to only project a silhouette. It didn’t quite work given the smoke and camera’s distance (in fact, the better effect is from Theophilus London’s IG video below… very cool.) Naturally though, Twitter was ablaze (no pun intended) with a high amount of WTF memes. I’m with the masses here — upset at the censors.
But it does beg a couple questions: 1. With the high volume of ‘n’ words, should Ye really be pushing “All Day” to non hip hop dominated audiences (like a telecast for pop music on ABC or even a Bulls game where the percentage is not as much as a Yeezus concert.) And 2. Why go back to “Black Skinhead”? Yeezus is a month shy of 2 years now.
Stay tuned for the silver lining to come of this performance: the next Kanye stream of consciousness.
Elsewhere in the night, the only other performance you have to see is Wiz Khalifa & Charlie Puth’s “See You Again” which featured viral violinist Lindsey Stirling to add a fresh touch to the melody. I dug her addition and the Paul Walker tribute video in the back at the very end. Why did Wiz have to turn up like that at the end? I would have preferred a classic pose it out moment.
I grasp for straws for more must-see highlights from the BBMAs. There’s really only J. Lo & Rita Ora left, ha!
The biggest celebrities in the most elaborate formal wear. Here’s quite the gallery featuring KimYe, The Carters, Common, John Legend & Chrissy Teigen, Rihanna, Cassie & Diddy, FKA Twigs and Robert Pattinson, Dwyane Wade & Gabrielle Union, Justin Bieber, Solange, and oh yeah J. Lo. Based on the Twitter volume I perused, Beyonce seems to be the big winner and I agree, she definitely killed. Also that Wizard of Oz meme on Rihanna’s dress. So it’s a draw.
Also, lowkey this is perfect.
The Met Gala is one of those events that I don’t really understand that I also refuse to Google to learn more about
Last night at Big Sean’s Grammy Weekend set at the HoB Sunset, the stars were out and it was Kanye who took over the headlines. He called out Nike real quick up above saying, “Y’all should thank Nike because they made me make these songs right here,” West says before performing ‘New Slaves'”.
Also partaking as part of Big Sean’s set was Travi$ Scott, Justin Bieber, Ty Dolla $ign, Chris Brown, Tyga, YG and DJ Mustard for “IDFWU”. And as you can tell in the photo below too, J. Lo, J. Cole, and the Jenners were at the show too.
Finally, be sure to also peep an entertaining video of Kanye letting an aspiring rapper spit some bars to him last night. Love that guy’s thankful reaction at the very end, haha.
J. Lo earns a Complex cover for FEB/MAR and sizzles in this new photoshoot above. She still looks so young and amazing in her 40s. And with her new album last year, recurring role as a judge on American Idol, and now a new movie, J. Lo isn’t going anywhere.
Read her interview from the interactive cover story (which has a few more photos too) that finds J. Lo talking about her maturation, her motherhood, and the aforementioned singing and acting.
BONUS: For those who scrolled down (btw, favorite pic is really the one above. Fierce.) here’s J. Lo, Anthony Mackie, Jimmy Fallon, and his guy Higgins playing Catchphrase. This was actually entertainingly intense.
The AMAs are ongoing at posting time and I’ll update as the night proceeds and the videos are uploaded to the interwebs.
The highlight for me so far was Lil Wayne debuting a new song from Tha Carter V alongside his new muse Christina Milian. It’s called “Start A Fire” and sounds like it could have some mainstream legs to it. Full song and explicit version TBD (Wayne’s entire second line was bleeped out for an awkwardly long amount of time… and it was probably fantastic.)
After Tunechi and Christina pranced off the stage, Nicki Minaj and Skylar Grey performed another rendition of “Bed of Lies” in all-white attire. It was a little strange to see some cuts of people dancing with it, but I appreciate that Nicki keeps pushing one of her deeper songs that doesn’t rely on sex appeal. Skylar’s voice was piercing throughout as she continues to slay those hooks. Always great to see the next A-list single she’s involved in.
More 2014 AMAs Performances by Iggy Azalea, Sam Smith & A$AP Rocky, Ariana Grande & The Weeknd, and Fergie with YG & DJ Mustard.
Added Mary J. Blige “Therapy”, Jessie J, Nicki Minaj, and Ariana Grande performing “Bang Bang”, and Iggy Azalea & J. Lo with “Booty” to close it out. Yup, this song closed it out. #JusSayin
Also debuted tonight: more of the “Guts Over Fear” video that drops in full tomorrow (or maybe with tonight’s midnight release of Shady XV) and Waka Flocka stars in a humorous commercial for Pine Bros. cough drops. I would rather watch this 5x than Fergie’s performance once.