The American Music Awards are generally an afterthought compared to the Grammys, but in an alternate universe they have a much larger audience. Last night’s show, hosted by Tracee Ellis Ross of Black-ish, is averaging just over 5 million viewers, making it slightly less popular than the Grammys, but almost twice as big as the MTV Video Music Awards. Last year’s AMAs drew 4.2 million.
The five biggest winners last night are, in order, XXXTentacion, Imagine Dragons, Drake, Kendrick Lamar and Post Malone. Neither performers nor winners at last year’s AMAs have quite the impact these days. All but one of the biggest awards were given out in January, when there was talk of artists boycotting the broadcast.
Drake was the most nominated artist last night, with nine mentions, and on the strength of a record-breaking album and tour, won the first three big categories: best rap album, artist of the year and favorite rap/hip-hop artist.
Drake also won over Post Malone, who won the first three of his eight nominations. He also beat out Drake for artist of the year, so he’s still out ahead in the rivalry between them. The newly crowned king, Post Malone, picked up four of his seven nominations. Bruno Mars won a best R&B/soul album award, as well as favorite soul/R&B male artist.