A who's who of the music business gathered at Pier 36 in decrease Manhattan on Thursday night time (Dec. 6) to honor this yr's greatest and brightest feminine artists on the 2018 Billboard Women in Music occasion. Presenters included Alicia Keys, Dua Lipa, Anderson .Paak and Patti Labelle, whereas honorees included Kacey Musgraves, Janelle Monae, Cyndi Lauper and Woman of the Year recipient Ariana Grande.
Host Ellie Goulding started the occasion discussing the way in which feminine artists impressed her all through her life, together with Björk, Beyoncé and Joni Mitchell. She then launched radio DJ Zane Lowe, who offered the Innovator award to nation star Kacey Musgraves. Lowe raved about how Musgraves' third album Golden Hour "utterly modified the course of my yr… I simply began listening to it for about three or 4 days non cease, and shared it to everybody I knew, and everybody I shared it with felt precisely the identical manner.”
Musgraves appeared to steer an acoustic efficiency of her Golden Hour spotlight "Butterflies," accompanied by banjo and cello. "This is loopy -- I imply, girls are fucking superior," she started her acceptance speech. "She then mirrored on the character of being an "innovator": "That’s a heavy phrase. Innovator to me means having the braveness to take dangers, understanding that it might utterly fail, and doing it anyway. I imply, what’s the purpose of any of this should you’re not capable of be who you might be?”
Then, after a brief shoutout to Billboard's just lately introduced editorial director Hannah Karp, Philadelphia rapper Tierra Whack launched Janelle Monae, winner of this yr's Trailblazer award. Monae shared a narrative that impacted her, following the discharge of her acclaimed 2018 album Dirty Computer. “Last night time I used to be in DC and I met a younger teenager," she shared. "And she advised me she had come out to her grandmother and her mom, due to the album. And I feel moments like these, they remind you, it doesn't matter what’s occurring in your life, how unhealthy you’re feeling -- that by us strolling in our truths, it might probably typically give the subsequent particular person braveness to stroll in theirs.”
Next, Fifth Harmony solo star Lauren Jauregui launched “the totally magnificent and extremely cool Hayley Kiyoko," who blazed by an brisk rendition of Expectations single "Curious," flanked by two backup dancers. "I'm gonna be crying the entire time -- that is my first time getting an award on the stage," Kiyoko warned initially of her acceptance speech for the Rising Star award. She went on to thank her mother and father, jokingly sharing that "my mother advised me that you just’re solely a rising star as soon as, and you then’re previous information. So I’m actually gonna sink on this second, as a result of that is it for me.” (She additionally talked about that she had been flirting with Grande earlier within the night.)
Jauregui got here again on stage to introduce the night time's executives of the yr honorees: Danielle Aguirre, Jacqueline Charlesworth, Susan Genco and her "badass lawyer" Dina Lapolt. Honored largely for his or her work in getting the Music Modernization Act handed earlier this yr, Lapolt took the mic to simply accept the award on behalf of the group to debate the significance of the act, saying that United States copyright legislation was "badly in want of a facelift." She closed her speech by declaring that “Our braveness to think about one thing higher makes us fucking unstoppable.”
Alicia Keys then took heart stage, raving concerning the vitality within the room: "We’ve all been to loads of reveals, and never all of them have this type of coronary heart and spirit.” Keys launched the just lately shaped She Is the Music Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to growing the variety of girls working within the music business, which she co-founded with execs Jody Gerson and Sam Kirby Yoh and her longtime engineer Ann Mincieli. "If you’re a girl in music, it is advisable be part of this," Keys insisted. "We can discover one another, and we are able to rent one another.”
Then, in tribute to award recipient Cyndi Lauper, singer/actor Tituss Burgess gave a powerhouse efficiency of Lauper's 1984 Hot 100 No. 1 hit "Time After Time," incomes a standing ovation for his emotional rendition. “People all the time say, 'What’s it prefer to be an icon?'" she associated, earlier than taking her statue from presenter Dua Lipa. “Now, I can hand ‘em this and say ‘Here, maintain this.’" She then gave a protracted speech about her historical past as a feminist, explaining, “I come from a technology the place you do an interview, and somebody would say, ‘Eh, what are you, some form of feminist?’ And I watched my colleagues say ‘Whoa, I’m a humanist!’ And then when it was my flip, I mentioned, ‘Hell yeah [I'm a feminist]! I burned my coaching bra on the first demonstration on the Alice in Wonderland statue [in Central Park].'”
Janelle Monae was then welcomed again to the stage by Deborah Curtis, vice chairman, head of world model experiences and partnerships for American Express, to current the American Express influence award to her Wondaland collective-mates, St. Beauty. "This is our very first award, and we're simply so honored and grateful," Alex Belle gushed, earlier than she and bandmate Isis Valentino went on to rave about Monae, and the way they used to hearken to her as followers earlier than she found them whereas they have been working in a classic store.
"I simply wished to say how honored I'm to be invited into the constructing," started R&B singer Anderson .Paak as he launched his former tourmate SZA: "I by no means obtained to inform you this in particular person, however I actually admire you, SZA -- you taught me a lot on that tour." SZA stipulated that she was gonna "hold this quick" upon accepting her rule breaker award, however nonetheless gave an emotional and revealing speech. "I'm simply grateful for everyone for having endurance with me -- as a result of I guessed once I was youthful I pictured a rule-breaker to be any individual, who like... actively has no concern, strolling away from giant explosions or no matter," she mentioned. "But so long as you find yourself right here, this is the explosion, so it doesn't matter how you are feeling on the way in which."
.Paak returned to stage to introduce soul legend Patti Labelle, even quoting somewhat little bit of the "Lady Marmalade" refrain. "I'm right here for my lady!" exclaimed Labelle, earlier than introducing the girl of the yr honoree Ariana Grande, "a younger lady who has all of it... she's all that and a bag of chips." After an emotional video tribute that ended along with her One Love Manchester efficiency, Grande delivered a hovering rendition of her present Hot 100 No. 1 hit "Thank U, Next."
"Thank you a lot for coming to my quinceañera," she joked to the viewers to start her speech, which largely centered on the disparity between her latest skilled success and her personal private chaos. "This has been the most effective years of my profession and one of many worst years in my life," she defined. "Lots of people would have a look at somebody in my place proper now... and suppose, 'She's actually obtained her shit collectively, she's actually on it, she's obtained all of it.' And I do. But so far as my private life, I actually do not know what the fuck I'm doing."
"I simply wanna say -- should you're somebody on the market who has no thought what the subsequent chapter is gonna deliver, you're not alone in that," she continued, starting to tear up -- earlier than reducing her personal feelings off ("that's actually gross, I'm not gonna do this"). She then thanked the individuals who helped her on her album, saying she's actually excited for everybody to listen to it, and evaluating it to an apparent favourite '90s comedy of hers: "If The First Wives Club was an album, that's the album." She ended by extending herself a few of the forgiveness she's beforehand provided to her exes, and wishing everybody: "Happy Hanukkah."