‘Kittygate’, Bluster, Race Rows And Blood Rituals – Welcome To The Billboard Awards 2022
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‘Kittygate’, Bluster, Race Rows And Blood Rituals – Welcome To The Billboard Awards 2022

May 23, 2022 Share

Rapper Drake and singer Olivia Rodrigo cleaned up with multiple honours at the Billboard Awards, but controversy was ominously waiting in the wings.

Wardrobe malfunctions, flagrant self-promotion and a controversial win from “racial slur” country star Morgan Wallen, the Billboard Music Awards show in Las Vegas was never going to be without its awkward moments and unseemly glitches.

Hosted by Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs, the glossed and glitzy spectacle at the MGM Grand Garden Arena saw rapper Drake take home five awards, bringing his tally to a record-breaking 34, leaving the Canadian undoubtedly thinking he’s going to need a bigger mantelpiece.

First-timer and biggest winner on the night, Olivia Rodrigo, although a no-show, swept the board with seven awards following the worldwide success of her album, Sour. While Ye (Kanye West) walked away with five gongs for his contribution to Christian and gospel music.

Performances from Travis Scott, his first awards night since last year’s Astroworld tragedy in which 10 people died during a crowd surge, complete with a snow blizzard stage effect, kept the audience ice cool. While jaws dropped at hip-hopper Latte’s extraordinary performance of hit Big Energy.

But even the bling couldn’t blind-side some controversy on the night.

Host Diddy was roundly slammed and mercilessly mocked as “self-centred”, “arrogant” and “revolting” in a Twitter frenzy.

The 52-year-old changed his name to Love recently, something he was assuredly lacking on the night.

He insisted on shamelessly plugging his new music, championing Ciroc Vodka and aggrandising other business ventures; he may as well have wore a sandwich board over his Bad Boy clobber. 

You see, he was executive producer on the show this year, so he can afford to be an exponent for a Diddy-style QVC show, can’t he? 

Well no he can’t and shouldn’t. It shows a tremendous lack of taste and leaves an even nastier one in in the mouths of paying fans.

Next up, JT from City Girls who, while presenting Top R ’n B artist award to Doja Cat, showed more than we need to see of her own ‘kitty’ in her sheer dress. Her word, not mine.

But was it a malfunction? Really? I mean really? It certainly got her exposure, for want of a better word, all around the world, including here on DDW as I write.

A social media frenzy ensued with one user tweeting, “Women wonder why they are treated like sexual objects instead of being respected for their talent, intellect etc. Well, Miss JT gives us exhibit A as a reason why many men only view them as sexual beings.”

City Girls JT and Young Miami. JT, left, had a wardrobe malfunction | Getty Images

Another wrote: “Her stylist needs to go to hell for that f******* dress because you can literally see up under it.”

Controversial country star Morgan Wallen performed at the event which also saw him take home the Top Country Male star award. But he was called out for not acknowledging his ban from last year’s show for being caught on video using the n-word. 

The distasteful blunder landed him a suspension from his record label Big Loud Records for his use of racist language and he was taken out of contention for the 2021 Country Music Awards.

Country star Morgan Wallen failed to address last year’s race row ban | Getty Images

On the night he performed Don’t Think Jesus which includes the line “Lord knows I ain’t perfect”.

Polemic rapper Machine Gun Kelly gave us a slow number, Twin Flame, announcing, “I wrote this song for my wife… and this is for our unborn child.”

A not-so-subtle hint that he had tied the knot with actor fiancée Meghan Fox. I’m sorry? Say again? Last we knew they were only engaged. In fact, the last everyone knew was that they were only engaged.

And pregnant? News to us too. With a total lack of baby bump, the only hint being that she didn’t drink on the night.

Meghan Fox and Machine Gun Kelly at the Billboard Awards 2022 | Getty Images

MGK’s long-running spat with Eminem is well documented, with each of them penning tunes attacking each other for more than a decade. After meeting Meghan on the set of 2021’s Midnight in the Switchgrass, MGK admitted that he was having treatment for  an addiction to Adderall, a potent concoction combination of amphetamine salts.

The pair have made headlines in the past for their very public displays of affection and for sharing graphic details about their relationship, including consuming each other’s blood.

It makes Angelina Jolie’s ritualistic relationship with Billy Bob Thornton look positively virginal.

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