The telecast featured a number of performance mixed in with various awards for the past year. Taylor Swift was a big winner, scoring eight awards including the night’s highest honor, Artist of the Year, as well as accolades for Top Female Artist, Top Billboard 200 Artist and Top Country Artist. Gotye, for major hit “Somebody I Used to Know,” and Rihanna were other major winners, the latter winning in the major R&B categories.
But the talk of the night ended up being Miguel’s performance of “Adorn.” Throughout much of the song, the R&B singer performed behind a screen that allowed images and words to be projected upon it, giving the performance an astral, otherworldly feel. Once the screen was lifted, Miguel trounced to the front of the stage, twirling and whirling before deciding to leap from one part of the stage to another outcrop, which involved traversing over a group of attendees.
But as Oregon Trail has shown us time and time again, you’re not to the end until you’ve hit the shoreline, and the singer just missed getting his whole body onto the stage, landing partly on two females in the audience, injuring one who reportedly walked away with minimal injuries.
i cant stop watching this vine.co/v/b9q1DJrUFMa
— dıpןo (@diplo) May 20, 2013
Miguel wasn’t the only one who had a rough evening. Justin Bieber, who went the edgy route with his performance and leather attire, was honored as the Top Male Artist and scored the Milestone Artist award, a fan-voted accolade. But during his acceptance speech, Bieber took to some of his detractors.
“I’m 19 years old,” he started. “I think I’m doing a pretty good job. And basically, from my heart, I just really want to say it should really be about the music. This is not a gimmick. I’m an artist and I should be taken seriously, and all this other bull should not be spoken of.”
This was met with a mixture of applause and boos from the audience, something generally not heard at an awards show.
Meanwhile, Brown showed off new single “Fine China,” seeming straight out of a Hong Kong martial arts flick with some of his high flying dance moves. Brown, who admitted to being a little hoarse for the performance afterward on Twitter, was joined by guitarist Orianthi for the song, off his upcoming sixth album X.
Prince was honored with the ceremony’s Icon Award, following in the footsteps of recent winners Neil Diamond and Stevie Wonder. Rather than accepting the award with a speech, he let the music do the talking, performing a slightly more rocking version of 1984’s “Let’s Go Crazy” and his newest song, the fast-paced “FixUrLifeUp.”
– Kevin Rutherford, Radio.com