The 2021 BET Awards took place Sunday, June 27 and featured the largest lineup of performers in the show's 21-year history. It was also among the first in-person award shows in the United States since the COVID-19 pandemic.
The ceremony was hosted by actress Taraji P. Henson and featured musical performances by Megan Thee Stallion, Andra Day, City Girls, DaBaby, DJ Khaled, H.E.R., Jazmine Sullivan, Kirk Franklin, Lil Baby, Lil Durk, Migos, Moneybagg Yo, Rapsody, Tone Stith, Roddy Ricch, and more.
Check out the clips of all the performances below!
Kirk Franklin & Lil Baby
Kirk Franklin and Lil Baby opened the show with a performance of the song "We Win." The uplifting song is part of the new movie Space Jam: A New Legacy, and was the first single released from the film's soundtrack.
Migos & Cardi B
With post-apocalyptic and volcanic backdrops, rap trio Migos took the stage to perform their new song off Culture III, "Straightenin'."
The fire effects and choreography were exciting enough, but Cardi B stole the show when she made a surprise appearance during the song "Type S***," showing off her baby bump in the process. After rapping her own bit, she joined Migos (including her husband, Offset) to close the song.
Opening with a drum solo from above, H.E.R. captivated the crowd with her dreamy performance of "We Made It." She also gave a rockstar electric guitar solo in the middle of the song, showing off her prowess as a multi-instrumentalist.
Moneybagg Yo gave a performance with stunning choregoraphy and cool glitchy background effects. He performed his song "Time Today" and followed up with his hit "Wockesha."
There was so much to look at in DaBaby's debut live performance of "Ball If I Want To." Not only did talented background dancers and a giant DaBaby mascot hold audience members' attention, but basketball players even came out to dunk on hoops that were on stage.
Megan Thee Stallion
Megan Thee Stallion had quite the night. Not only did the rapper give a rockin' performance of "Thot S***," she also won BET Awards for Video of the Year, Viewer's Choice, Best Collaboration (with Cardi B), and Female Hip-Hop Artist.
Tyler, the Creator
Following the release of his new album Call Me If You Get Lost, Tyler, the Creator rapped his new song "Lumberjack" in his first-ever BET Awards performance. In true theatrical Tyler fashion, the performance had the rapper trying to survive through a windy storm.
Jazmine Sullivan, Ari Lennox, & Maxine Waters
Besides winning the BET Award for Album of the Year (Heaux Tales), Jazmine Sullivan gave a soulful performance of ther songs "Tragic" and "On It." Ari Lennox also joined Sullivan halfway through the set, and congresswoman Maxine Waters recited a speech during the the opening.
Roddy Rich returned to the BET Awards with a performance of "Late at Night," which featured a beautiful cityscape background. The artist was nominated for both Viewer's Choice and Best Collaboration (with DaBaby for "Rockstar").
Lil Nas X
Lil Nas X performed his hit song "Montero (Call Me By Your Name)," in a royal Egyptian fashion. The decor was inspired by Michael Jackson's music video for "Remember the Time."
Yung Miami and JT of City Girls performed their song "Twerkulator" for the BET crowd. The two even had a fun little dance battle towards the end of the song.
Dynamic duo Anderson .Paak and Bruno Mars of Silk Sonic performed their hit song "Leave the Door Open." True to their stage name, the act was smoother than silk. The duo also won the BET Award for Best Duo.
Lil’ Kim, Monie Love, Rapsody, & MC Lyte
Lil’ Kim, Monie Love, Rapsody, & MC Lyte performed a medley of Queen Latifah's songs as a tribute for her Lifetime Achievement Award. They rapped "Just Another Day," "Ladies First," and "UNITY."
DJ Khaled's act featured Megan Thee Stallion, Lil Durk, Lil Baby, H.E.R. and DaBaby. The team performed "Hats Off," "Every Chance I Get," and "I Did It." DJ Khaled was nominated for a Coca-Cola Viewer's Choice Award and for Best Collaboration (with Drake for "Popstar").
To honor his collaborative partner, the late rapper DMX, Swizz Beatz called upon Method Man, Westside Gunn, Benny the Butcher, Conway the Machine, Michael K. Williams, The Lox, and Busta Rhymes to perform a medley of the deceased rapper's hits.
Tone Stith & Mereba
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Article Image: Lil Nas X at the Spotify Best New Artist 2020 party, H.E.R. performing at the One Music Festival in 2018, Bruno Mars at the "Twilight: Breaking Dawn" premiere in 2011. (DFree, Jamie Lamor Thompson via Shutterstock, PopularImages via DepositPhotos.)