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A fan was brought on stage to announce the winner, and she initially said Brown won. Then she corrected herself to say Rihanna won, and Drake came on stage to claim the trophy. After a commercial break, host Kevin Hart clarified that “there was a mistake,” and Brown had indeed been the viewers’ choice.

Other winners included Diddy Dirty Money, named best group, and Jaden Smith and Willow Smith, who tied as winners of the Young Stars award.

But the show was really about the performances, which were plentiful. Mary J. Blige opened the ceremony, performing her hits “All Night Long” and “Real Love” before being joined by Anita Baker. The divas performed a duet of “Caught Up in the Rapture.”

Rick Ross, Lil Wayne, DJ Khaled and Ace Hood shared the stage for “Hustle Hard.” Alicia Keys unveiled a new song, before lapsing into “A Woman’s Worth,” for which she was joined by Bruno Mars, and her hit, “Fallin’.”

Jill Scott sang in a speakeasy setting. Trey Songz took off his shirt during his performance, even after host Kevin Hart said the young singer looks “like a beige greyhound” shirtless.

Donnie McClurkin kicked off a gospel celebration, with Mary Mary and Deitrick Haddon joining in to sing “Thank You.”

Beyonce performed from across the pond: Her headlining set at the Glastonbury Music Festival was beamed into the Shrine from England.


Sandy Cohen can be reached at