The 2016 American Music Awards featured a number of pop stars strumming their guitars, Drake making a rare awards show appearance, an emotional speech from Selena Gomez and political moments about President-elect Donald Trump.
Drake, who has skipped his fair share of awards shows in recent years, was the big winner with four awards and debuted a new commercial for Apple Music.
“For our genre, I just like to keep things excited and keep making music. Shout out to everybody that’s trying to do the same thing,” said Drake, who broke Michael Jackson’s record for most AMA nominations after scoring 13 nominations.
Bieber, who performed from his tour in Zurich, Switzerland, also won four awards.
Gomez, who lost artist of the year to Ariana Grande but won favorite female artist pop/rock, gave a heartfelt speech onstage that earned a loud applause from the audience at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.
“I think it’s safe to say that most of you know a lot of my life whether I liked it or not, and I had to stop, ’cause I had everything, and I was absolutely broken inside. And I kept it all together to where I never let you down. But I kept it too much together where I let myself down,” said 24-year-old Gomez, who recently took time off to treat depression and anxiety.
“I don’t want to see your bodies on Instagram. I want to see what’s in here,” she added, pointing to her heart. “And I have to say thank you so much to my fans because you guys are so damn loyal, and I don’t know what I did to deserve you. If you are broken, you don’t have to stay broken.”
Grande was shaking onstage as she collected artist of the year at the fan-voted show that aired live on ABC, beating Adele, Rihanna, Carrie Underwood and Bieber. “With or without this, I love you from the bottom of my heart,” she said to her fans.
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