What Billboard Music Awards 2023 bust means for future pop prize nights

What Billboard Music Awards 2023 bust means for future pop prize nights

Barely a week ago, the 2024 Grammy nominations were announced.

But even as top contenders SZA, Taylor Swift and Olivia Rodrigo were already getting fitted for gowns, something was amiss.

The fact that the nominees for music’s top prize were being announced before anyone got to chow and cocktail down for Friendsgiving — let alone Thanksgiving — made it feel way too early in the awards season.

I mean, Mariah Carey didn’t even have enough time to properly defrost.

Add to that the fact that the 2023 Country Music Awards took place just two days before the 2024 Grammy nominations were announced — and you knew that something just ain’t right with music award shows.

Mariah Carey singing her holiday classic “All I Want for Christmas Is You.”
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Bebe Rexha performs at the 2023 Billboard Music Awards.
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Karol G performing in LA for the 2023 Billboard Music Awards.
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That trend continued on Sunday night, when the Billboard Music Awards took the pre-Thanksgiving weekend spot long occupied by the American Music Awards — and turned it into one big turkey. (To make matters even weirder, both the BBMAs and the AMAs are owned by the same parent company.)

Indeed, while the BBMAs were previously aired on NBC — these awards were relegated to a damn Billboard website. And there was hardly anything “live” about them with a host of pre-taped performances and award presentations.

Womp, MFing womp.

Morgan Wallen at the Atlanta Braves’ stadium in Atlanta, Georgia.
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Stray Kids performing at the music event.
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Mike Tyson wore boxing gloves on the red carpet ahead of the show.
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If the BBMAs, which had previously been held in May since 2011, were going to bogart the AMAs — which had previously given us such iconic moments as Whitney Houston’s bravura, 10-minute medley of “I Loves You Porgy,” “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going” and “I Have Nothing” in 1994 — they needed to bring it.

Instead, it was such a fail that no one even cared — or even knew — about it. (That is, of course, if you weren’t one of Carey’s Lambily who were all about her performing her holiday classic “All I Want for Christmas Is You” on an awards show for the very first time.)

As winners were being announced before the awards were even scheduled to take place on Sunday night, those who bothered to hang around for the BBMAs — and were willing to endure a spotty stream on the Billboard site — quickly realized that they had been bamboozled.

Not that the BBMAs were ever the highest of honors — nor did they ever deliver the kind of must-see moments of the Grammys, the AMAs or the MTV Video Music Awards — but this made you wonder about the future of all music awards shows.

Karol G wins the Billboard Music Awards for Top Latin Female Artist and Top Latin Touring Artist.
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Tate McRae performs “Greedy” at the 2023 Billboard Music Awards.
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Let’s face it: The VMAs are barely holding on for relevance already.

And if it wasn’t for the Grammys and the Academy of Country Music Awards, there might not be any network presence for these trophy-giving galas.

It’s sad to see that once used to be one of music’s biggest nights with the AMAs in the buildup to the Grammy nominations, become so inconsequential. Or worse yet, just ignored.

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