Billboard Music Awards: The winners and performances
Taylor Swift, Sam Smith, Pharrell Williams and more...
It was a performance no one expected. The hottest artist this year, Taylor Swift, not only premiered her new music video for Bad Blood but she also introduced the surprise opening act, Van Halen. The high kicking, guitar heroes rocked the Las Vegas venue with a high octane rendition of their 1984 hit Panama, which was released before Swift was even born. But her tender age didn't hold her back from scooping a total of eight awards on the night, making her the overwhelming star of the billboard chart this year. Gongs included; 'Top Artist,' 'Billboard Chart Achievement Award,' Top Female Artist' and 'Top Billboard 200 Album' among others.
Swift's confirmed new beau, Calvin Harris, also struck gold on the night, picking up the 'Top Dance Artist' award, and sharing some PDA with his girlfriend for the first time. Much to the delight of the crowd. Sam Smith was honoured with three awards including 'Top Male Artist,' 'Top Radio Songs Artist,' and 'Top New Artist.' Unfortunately the British crooner couldn't be there in person as he is recovering from a surgery on his vocal chords, so he delivered a charming Love Actually inspired acceptance speech via video using cue cards, thanking his fans and expressing his excitement to get better and get singing again.
Justin Bieber won 'Top Social Artist' thanks to his online Bieber army of 63.9 million Twitter followers. Pharrell Williams got a look in with 'Top R&B Artist' as well as 'Top R&B album.' Despite the blow One Direction were dealt earlier this year when Zayn Malik walked away from the band, the new foursome scooped 'Top Touring Artist' and 'Top Duo/Group.' John Legend walked away with 'Top Radio Song' for his love anthem All of Me.
Top performances of the night came from Ed Sheeran who blew the MGM crowd away with a stripped down deconstructed performance of his latest hit Bloodstream, layering all of the elements of the song on top of each other live and unaccompanied, showing the true extent of his seemingly endless talents. Nick Jonas embraced the Vegas venue and put on a neon lit production of his pop hit Jealous.
Brian Kelley (L) and Tyler Hubbard of Florida Georgia Line
DJ Calvin Harris
Zendaya, model Martha Hunt, recording artist Taylor Swift, model Lily Aldridge and actors Hailee Steinfeld and Ellen Pompeo
Kira Kazantsev and musician Pete Wentz
50 Cent and Rita Ora
Pitbull and Chris Brown