2018 Billboard Music Awards Winners List and Live Blog (VIDEOS PHOTOS)

BILLBOARD MUSIC AWARDS -- Presentation -- 2018 BBMA's at the MGM Grand, Las Vegas, Nevada -- Pictured: Kelly Clarkson -- (Photo by: Paul Drinkwater/NBC)

Hosted by OG American Idol winner and The Voice coach Kelly Clarkson, the 2018 Billboard Music Awards will broadcast live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Sunday, May 20 at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT on NBC.  Join us as we live blog all the performances and winners.

2018 Billboard Music Awards: List of Performers and Presenters

Welcome to the live blog of the 2018 Billboard Music Awards. This year’s show will be hosted by American Idol champion and 3-time Grammy winner Kelly Clarkson, and it will also feature an Icon Award performance from superstar Janet Jackson. In addition, several other stars are set to perform and present tonight. It should be an exciting night of music, so let’s get started!

The show begins on a somber note as an emotional Kelly Clarkson addresses the recent gun shootings. She says she’s done with moments of silence and wants to motivate change instead. “We need to do better,” she says. “We’re failing their families.”

https://youtu.be/B41XUP-ivL8

Afterwards, the first performance kicks off. Ariana Grande sings her latest single “No Tears Left To Cry.” There seems to be a bit of an audio issue at the beginning as we can barely hear her. This continues throughout the entire performance as we hear the backing track better than Ariana’s actual vocals.

Kelly Clarkson takes the stage. She welcomes us to the show as the camera cuts to several stars in the audience. She admits hosting is new for her and she’s not a comedian. “Tonight you’re just getting me,” she says. She asks us to be nice, but she says if you’re going to be mean, be funny about it. She says she’s a big fan of the people in the room. She gives a shout-out to Demi Lovato, Christina Aguilera, Taylor Swift, Jennifer Lopez, Shawn Mendes, Post Malone, BTS (who gets the loudest cheers from the audience), and Janet Jackson. Kelly says tonight is about celebrating music from all genres. She insists she won’t be making her monologue about herself before she begins a medley of some of the popular songs of the past year. She starts by singing a bit of “My Church” by Maren Morris. She then goes into “Too Good At Goodbyes” by Sam Smith, “HUMBLE.” by Kendrick Lamar, “Thunder” by Imagine Dragons, “Young Dumb & Broke” by Khalid, “Finesse” by Bruno Mars and Cardi B, and then “Shape of You” by Ed Sheeran. She ends with “There’s Nothing Holding Me Back” by Shawn Mendes and “Look What You Made Me Do” by Taylor Swift before singing a little bit of all these songs once again. She ends with a final line from “My Church.”

Rebel Wilson is the first presenter, and she’s handing out the award for Top New Artist. She jokes she just came from the Royal Wedding. “The reception was out of control,” she quips. Afterwards, the Top New Artist award goes to Khalid. He first thanks his mom and then thanks his manager before giving a shout-out to Texas. He encourages everyone to follow their dreams and says the only person standing in your way is you.

Next, Hailey Baldwin and French Montana present Dua Lipa. She’s performing her hit single “New Rules.” The audio issue has yet to be fixed as we can hear the audience along with the backing vocals.

The Chainsmokers and Halsey are here to present the award for Top Hot 100 Song. Before they announce the winner, they honor the late Avicii and give awareness for mental health. Afterwards, the award goes to “Despacito.” Luis Fonsi accepts the award. “¡Buenas noches!” he greets us. He thanks us for embracing a mostly Spanish song and for wanting to dance to it, sing to it, and learn it. He gives a shout-out to Daddy Yankee and Justin Bieber, thanks his label and management, and then says this award goes out to all the Latinos out there.

Julia Michaels and Grace VanderWaal present Shawn Mendes before he performs his latest single “In My Blood.” Who is in charge of the audio? Why do we continue to hear the cheers and discussions from the crowd better than the singer’s vocals? It’s like an echo effect on Shawn’s vocals right now. We can hear him better on the chorus, but there are still issues with the audio.

Next, Chole Kim and Des Linden present the award for Top Female Artist to Taylor Swift. She says thank you before saying she hasn’t been to an awards show in a few years. She gives a shout-out to all the female artists right now and calls them all inspiring. She also gives a thanks to her fans. Afterwards, Ciara takes the stage. She says Uber has brought female artists together to empower each other for a pre-recorded segment that plays before the next commercial break.

Bebe Rexha present Khalid and Normani singing their song “Love Lies.” Sigh. The audio still hasn’t been fixed, and we’re almost an hour into the show. It seems like it’ll be like this throughout the broadcast. The singers’ vocals aren’t as clear as they should be; I can barely make out a word they are singing. The audience is louder than they should be too. I don’t believe the “whoos!” from the audience should be as audible as they are.

https://youtu.be/QDwDr–pwzo

John Legend takes the stage and sings his song “A Good Night.” After his performance, Kelly congratulates him on the birth of his new son with Chrissy Teigen. A photo of the newborn baby flashes on the screen before we go into another commercial break.

Nick Jonas and Mustard present the award for Top Dance/Electronic Artist to The Chainsmokers. They hug BTS on the way to the stage, and the audience (well, the BTS fans in the audience) go crazy over this. They dedicate this award to Avicii and say he inspired their careers. Next, Kelly presents Christina Aguilera and Demi Lovato to the stage. They are here to perform “Fall In Line.” Even their big voices aren’t immune to the technical issues of this broadcast, but they still present strong and confident vocals throughout the performance. Afterwards, Kelly Clarkson takes us to another commercial break. BTS are behind her, and their fans cheer loudly. Throughout the entire show thus far, the BTS fans erupt in screams each time their favorite boy band members are on camera.

Justin Hartley and Chrissy Metz are the next presenters. They are here to present Top Social Artist, and the award goes to BTS. As expected, their fans in the audience are screaming like crazy. BTS thanks them for giving them this award two years in a row. They’re touched that they’ve been told their music has changed their lives. Next, Ashlee Simpson and Evan Ross present a performance from Ed Sheeran. We watch the performance via satellite as he’s currently in Ireland. He’s performing his Irish-influenced track “Galway Girl.” The audio issues continue, but he delivers a lively performance with his guitar in hand.

Next, Jennifer Lopez’s World of Dance co-stars Derek Hough, Jenna Dewan, and Ne-Yo are on stage to present her to the stage with her new song “Dinero.” The performance begins with DJ Khaled lip-syncing to a pre-recorded intro, but we can barely hear him. Afterwards, Jennifer takes the stage. She has a big production with dancers alongside her, but the audio issues continue.

Tip “T.I.” Harris is the next presenter on stage. He presents Top Rap Song to Post Malone for “Rockstar” feat. 21 Savage. He says this is his first award and he’s speechless. Afterwards, Bebe Rexha is back on stage. She addresses the tragedy in Santa Fe, Texas before she presents Shawn Mendes and Khalid performing “Youth.” They are joined by a choir composed of students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

Kelly Clarkson is back on stage and asks if we’re having a good time. She presents Zedd, Grey, and Maren Morris performing the genre-blending “The Middle.” The audience is enthusiastically singing along to the chorus. Next, Mila Kunis is here to present the award for Top Selling Album. She says the show is so much fun before presenting Top Selling Album to Taylor Swift for reputationBefore she is handed the trophy, a video tribute for the reputation album plays on the screen. It was Taylor’s fifth consecutive #1 album. Taylor has a record for 4 million selling weeks in history. She is congratulated for a remarkable achievement to an amazing career. Taylor accepts the award and tells us she began writing songs to feel more understood. Before this album was released, she felt like she had become misunderstood. She thanks her fans for their continued support and for feeling understood again.

Bruno Mars walks to the stage to big cheers before he begins to introduce Janet Jackson. He begins with a tribute to The Jackson 5 and their innovative sound. He says they inspired the youngest member of the family before we see a video montage of Janet Jackson’s career. Afterwards, Bruno lists off a list of her achievements, including 100 Billboard #1s and more than 300 weeks at #1.  She has 19 #1 dance club chart singles and 18 consecutive Top 10 hits. She also has had a #1 album in each of last four decades. She’s also an Emmy, Golden Globe, and Oscar nominee. She takes the stage and begins her set with a performance of “Nasty.” It’s been 25 years since the release of her janet. album, and she sings more of her hits. Audio issues aside due to the broadcast, it’s an energetic performance with a big production consisting of several dancers. The audience is clearly excited to see her back on the stage performing.  After her performance, Janet Jackson accepts the Icon Award. The audience erupts in cheers and begins chanting “Janet! Janet!” She says she’s deeply humbled and grateful. “We live in a glorious moment in history,” she says. “We will no longer be controlled, manipulated, or abused. I stand with those women and men equally outraged.” She also thanks God. “Everything we lack, God has in abundance,” Janet says. “Compassion, sensitivity, patience, and a boundless love.” Janet Jackson’s career took a hit after the 2004 Super Bowl incident (which never should have been a big deal), so it’s great to see her perform for a crowd genuinely excited to see her again, as well as get recognized for her achievements too.

https://youtu.be/tLCvP87boVs

Alison Brie and Darren Criss present the award for Top Country Song to Sam Hunt for “Body Like A Back Road.” Sam thanks the songwriters, his wife, and his fans. Afterwards, Macklemore and Kesha take the stage at the T-Mobile Arena to perform “Good Old Days.” And yes, the audio issues are still present. By this point, I’ve just gotten used to it.

Our host Kelly Clarkson has now taken the stage to perform. She’s singing “Whole Lotta Woman.” Her powerful pipes are overcoming the audio issues as best as possible. She’s delivering strong and commanding vocals and has given us one of the best performances of the night.

Simon Cowell is our next presenter. The announcer says, “From America’s Got Talent,” but we all know him best from American Idol. And we’re reminded of that fact when he gives Kelly a hug before walking to the mic. “That was bloody fantastic!” he says of Kelly’s performance.

Afterwards, he welcomes Pharrell and Camila Cabello to the stage. They’re singing their new song “Sangria Wine.” They have a big production, but they’re not overcoming the audio issues as well as Kelly did. After a bit of “Sangria Wine,” Camila begins singing “Havana.” The audience is audibly excited to hear this popular track. And we can actually hear some fans singing along with Camila, but out of key. The audio issues have really harmed tonight’s show.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gQKLKHBHPOw

Andy Cohen and Padma Lakshmi present the Billboard Chart Achievement Award to Camila Cabello. “This is a really cool moment for me!” she says. She tells us how last year was the first time time she’s performed on the show as a solo artist, and she thanks her fans for sticking by her. She says this award is for them. Next, Kelly has earmuffs on as she presents BTS performing “Fake Love.” Cue the screaming fan girls. BTS delivers an energetic performance with boy band dance moves.

Tyra Banks takes the stage to present the biggest award of the night. The Top Artist Awards goes to Ed Sheeran. He’s currently in Ireland, so we see a video message play. He thanks the fans for the support. The show closes with a performance from Salt-N-Pepa with En Vogue. It’s been 30 years since Salt-N-Pepa became the first female rap artists to hit the Top 40 of the Billboard Hot 100. They sing a few of their hits, including “Let’s Talk About Sex” and “Push It.” En Vogue eventually joins them on stage with a performance of “What A Man.” By the end of the performance, Kelly Clarkson joins them on stage and sings with them too. The audience is visibly excited and enjoying the upbeat performance, making it a fun way to close out tonight’s award show.

And that wraps up the 2018 Billboard Music Awards! Thanks for reading, post your thoughts in the comment section, and see the full list of winners down here below.

 2018 Billboard Awards Winners List

ARTIST AWARDS

Top Artist:
Drake
Kendrick Lamar
Bruno Mars
Ed Sheeran – WINNER
Taylor Swift

Top New Artist:
21 Savage
Camila Cabello
Cardi B
Khalid – WINNER
Kodak Black

Billboard Chart Achievement Award (Voting details to be released in the coming weeks):
Camila Cabello – WINNER
Cardi B
Drake
Sam Hunt
Ed Sheeran

Top Male Artist:
Drake
Kendrick Lamar
Bruno Mars
Post Malone
Ed Sheeran – WINNER

Top Female Artist:
Camila Cabello
Cardi B
Halsey
Demi Lovato
Taylor Swift – WINNER

Top Duo/Group:
The Chainsmokers
Coldplay
Imagine Dragons – WINNER
Migos
U2

Top Billboard 200 Artist:
Drake – WINNER
Kendrick Lamar
Ed Sheeran
Chris Stapleton
Taylor Swift

Top Hot 100 Artist:
Imagine Dragons – WINNER
Kendrick Lamar
Bruno Mars
Post Malone
Ed Sheeran

Top Streaming Songs Artist:
Cardi B
Drake
Kendrick Lamar – WINNER
Post Malone
Ed Sheeran

Top Song Sales Artist:
Imagine Dragons
Kendrick Lamar
Bruno Mars
Post Malone
Ed Sheeran – WINNER

Top Radio Songs Artist:
Halsey
Imagine Dragons
Bruno Mars
Charlie Puth
Ed Sheeran – WINNER

Top Social Artist (Voting details to be released in the coming weeks):
Justin Bieber
BTS – WINNER
Ariana Grande
Demi Lovato
Shawn Mendes

Top Touring Artist:
Coldplay
Guns N’ Roses
Bruno Mars
Ed Sheeran
U2 – WINNER

Top R&B Artist:
Chris Brown
Khalid
Bruno Mars – WINNER
SZA
The Weeknd

Top R&B Male Artist:
Khalid
Bruno Mars – WINNER
The Weeknd

Top R&B Female Artist:
Beyoncé
Rihanna
SZA – WINNER

Top R&B Tour:
Bruno Mars – WINNER
Lionel Richie
The Weeknd

Top Rap Artist:
Drake
Kendrick Lamar – WINNER
Lil Uzi Vert
Migos
Post Malone

Top Rap Male Artist:
Drake
Kendrick Lamar – WINNER
Post Malone

Top Rap Female Artist:
Bhad Bhabie
Cardi B – WINNER
Nicki Minaj

Top Rap Tour:
J. Cole
JAY-Z – WINNER
Kendrick Lamar

Top Country Artist:
Kane Brown
Luke Combs
Sam Hunt
Thomas Rhett
Chris Stapleton – WINNER

Top Country Male Artist:
Sam Hunt
Thomas Rhett
Chris Stapleton – WINNER

Top Country Female Artist:
Kelsea Ballerini
Miranda Lambert
Maren Morris – WINNER

Top Country Duo/Group Artist:
Florida Georgia Line
Old Dominion
Zac Brown Band – WINNER

Top Country Tour:
Luke Bryan – WINNER
Florida Georgia Line
Tim McGraw & Faith Hill

Top Rock Artist:
Imagine Dragons – WINNER
Linkin Park
Portugal. The Man
Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers
twenty one pilots

Top Rock Tour:
Coldplay
Guns N’ Roses
U2 – WINNER

Top Latin Artist:
J Balvin
Daddy Yankee
Luis Fonsi
Ozuna – WINNER
Romeo Santos

Top Dance/Electronic Artist:
The Chainsmokers – WINNER
Calvin Harris
Kygo
Marshmello
ODESZA

Top Christian Artist:
Elevation Worship
Hillsong UNITED
Hillsong Worship
MercyMe – WINNER
Zach Williams

Top Gospel Artist:
Anthony Brown & group therAPy
Travis Greene
J.J. Hairston & Youthful Praise
Tasha Cobbs Leonard – WINNER
Tamela Mann

ALBUM AWARDS

Top Billboard 200 Album:
Drake “More Life”
Kendrick Lamar “DAMN.” – WINNER
Post Malone “Stoney”
Ed Sheeran “÷ (Divide)”
Taylor Swift “reputation”

Top Selling Album:
Kendrick Lamar “DAMN.”
P!nk “Beautiful Trauma”
Ed Sheeran “÷ (Divide)”
Chris Stapleton “From A Room: Volume 1”
Taylor Swift “reputation” – WINNER

Top Soundtrack:
“Black Panther”
“The Fate of the Furious: The Album”
“The Greatest Showman”
“Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2: Awesome Mix Vol. 2”
“Moana” – WINNER

Top R&B Album:
Khalid “American Teen”
Bruno Mars “24K Magic” – WINNER
SZA “Ctrl”
The Weeknd “Starboy”
XXXTENTACION “17”

Top Rap Album:
Drake “More Life”
Kendrick Lamar “DAMN.” – WINNER
Lil Uzi Vert “Luv Is Rage 2”
Migos “Culture”
Post Malone “Stoney”

Top Country Album:
Kane Brown “Kane Brown”
Luke Combs “This One’s For You”
Thomas Rhett “Life Changes”
Chris Stapleton “From A Room: Volume 1” – WINNER
Brett Young “Brett Young”

Top Rock Album:
Imagine Dragons “Evolve” – WINNER
Linkin Park “One More Light”
Panic! At The Disco “Death Of A Bachelor”
Portugal. The Man “Woodstock”
U2 “Songs of Experience”

Top Latin Album:
Nicky Jam “Fénix”
Christian Nodal “Me Dejé Llevar”
Ozuna “Odisea” – WINNER
Romeo Santos “Golden”
Shakira “El Dorado”

Top Dance/Electronic Album:
Avicii “AV?CI (01)”
The Chainsmokers “Memories…Do Not Open” – WINNER
Calvin Harris “Funk Wav Bounces Vol. 1”
Kygo “Stargazing”
ODESZA “A Moment Apart”

Top Christian Album:
Elevation Worship “There Is A Cloud”
Hillsong UNITED “Wonder”
Hillsong Worship “Let There Be Light”
Alan Jackson “Precious Memories Collection” – WINNER
MercyMe “Lifer”

Top Gospel Album:
Anthony Brown & group therAPy “A Long Way From Sunday
Travis Greene “Crossover: Live From Music City”
J.J. Hairston & Youthful Praise “You Deserve It”
Tasha Cobbs Leonard “Heart. Passion. Pursuit.” – WINNER
Marvin Sapp “Close”

SONG AWARDS

Top Hot 100 Song:
Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee ft. Justin Bieber “Despacito” – WINNER
Kendrick Lamar “HUMBLE.”
Bruno Mars “That’s What I Like”
Post Malone ft. 21 Savage “Rockstar”
Ed Sheeran “Shape Of You”

Top Streaming Song (Audio):
Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee ft. Justin Bieber “Despacito”
Kendrick Lamar “HUMBLE.” – WINNER
Lil Uzi Vert “XO TOUR Llif3”
Post Malone ft. 21 Savage “Rockstar”
Post Malone ft. Quavo “Congratulations”

Top Streaming Song (Video):
Cardi B “Bodak Yellow (Money Moves)”
Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee ft. Justin Bieber “Despacito” – WINNER
Lil Pump “Gucci Gang”
Bruno Mars “That’s What I Like”
Ed Sheeran “Shape of You”

Top Selling Song:
Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee ft. Justin Bieber “Despacito” – WINNER
Sam Hunt “Body Like A Back Road”
Imagine Dragons “Believer”
Imagine Dragons “Thunder”
Ed Sheeran “Perfect”

Top Radio Song:
The Chainsmokers & Coldplay “Something Just Like This”
Imagine Dragons “Believer”
Bruno Mars “That’s What I Like”
Charlie Puth “Attention”
Ed Sheeran “Shape of You” – WINNER

Top Collaboration:
Camila Cabello ft. Young Thug “Havana”
The Chainsmokers & Coldplay “Something Just Like This”
Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee ft. Justin Bieber “Despacito” – WINNER
French Montana ft. Swae Lee “Unforgettable”
Post Malone ft. 21 Savage “Rockstar”

Top R&B Song:
Childish Gambino “Redbone”
DJ Khaled ft. Rihanna & Bryson Tiller “Wild Thoughts”
Khalid “Young Dumb & Broke”
Bruno Mars “That’s What I Like” – WINNER
Bruno Mars ft. Cardi B “Finesse”

Top Rap Song:
Cardi B “Bodak Yellow (Money Moves)”
DJ Khaled ft. Justin Bieber, Quavo, Chance The Rapper & Lil Wayne “I’m the One”
French Montana ft. Swae Lee “Unforgettable”
Kendrick Lamar “HUMBLE.”
Post Malone ft. 21 Savage “Rockstar” – WINNER

Top Country Song:
Kane Brown ft. Lauren Alaina “What Ifs”
Sam Hunt “Body Like A Back Road” – WINNER
Dustin Lynch “Small Town Boy”
Bebe Rexha & Florida Georgia Line “Meant To Be”
Brett Young “In Case You Didn’t Know”

Top Rock Song:
Imagine Dragons “Believer” – WINNER
Imagine Dragons “Thunder”
Linkin Park ft. Kiiara “Heavy”
Portugal. The Man “Feel It Still”
The Revivalists “Wish I Knew You”

Top Latin Song:
J Balvin & Willy William ft. Beyoncé “Mi Gente”
Becky G ft. Bad Bunny “Mayores”
Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee ft. Justin Bieber “Despacito” – WINNER
Maluma “Felices Los 4”
Wisin ft. Ozuna “Escápate Conmigo”

Top Dance/Electronic Song:
The Chainsmokers & Coldplay “Something Just Like This” – WINNER
Clean Bandit ft. Sean Paul & Anne-Marie “Rockabye”
Cheat Codes ft. Demi Lovato “No Promises”
Kygo & Selena Gomez “It Ain’t Me”
Zedd & Alessia Cara “Stay”

Top Christian Song:
Elevation Worship “O Come To The Altar”
Hillsong Worship “What A Beautiful Name” – WINNER
Lecrae ft. Tori Kelly “I’ll Find You”
MercyMe “Even If”
Zach Williams “Old Church Choir”

Top Gospel Song:
Anthony Brown & group therAPy “Trust In You”
J.J. Hairston & Youthful Praise “You Deserve It” – WINNER
Travis Greene “You Waited”
Tamela Mann “Change Me”
Charlie Wilson “I’m Blessed”

PHOTO GALLERY

About Steven Curtis 354 Articles
Steven is a graduate of the University of West Florida with a bachelor's degree in communication arts. He enjoys watching reality competition shows, such as American Idol, Survivor, Big Brother, and The Amazing Race.