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FEATURE ARTICLE

 
KANYE WEST, T.I., CHRIS BROWN MAKE COME BACKS AT BET AWARDS

 

6.28.10 --- Hosted by Queen Latifah, the 2010 BET Awards was a year of comebacks as Kanye West, T.I., Chris Brown and El Debarge took the stage.

 

Kanye West, who has been in exile since interrupting Taylor Swift at last year's MTV Video Music Awards, and T.I., who was recently freed from jail, both performed to rousing applause.  West opened the show with "Power," the first single from his forthcoming album. The Chicago lyricist was spirited and styling, appearing in an all-red ensemble and rapping atop a constructed mountaintop.

Tip took to the stage with Travis Barker on the drums, and in slick fashion, the Atlanta star performed "Takers" from his upcoming film of the same name.

 

In the biggest surprise of the night, Chris Brown led a dance tribute to Michael Jackson.

 

Like West and T.I., it was the first major TV performance for Brown since he pleaded guilty to battery charges stemming from his February 2009 beating of ex-girlfriend Rihanna.  The tribute came just days after the one-year anniversary of the pop icon's death, with a medley that included "Remember the Time" and "Billie Jean."  Still things didn’t get interesting until Brown, perhaps moved by the positive response from the audience at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, broke down in sobs as he tried to sing Jackson's hit "Man in the Mirror."

 

He later picked up a fan based award, Fandemonium.  "I want to say one thing, I let you down before but I won't ever again, I promise," said Brown as he accepted the AOL Award.

 

Alicia Keys was just as stirring.  In her ode to Prince, Keys, replete with her newly public baby bump, sang "Adore" and shocked those in attendance when she crawled atop her piano to finish out the sexy number.

 

El DeBarge raised the crowd to its feet as the former Motown legend held his own with a mini-set that included his band's greatest hits, including "Rhythm of the Night."

 

Drake was among the night's big winners, as he and Young Money cohort Nicki Minaj took home trophies for Best Hip-Hop Artist, male and female, respectively. The Lil Wayne protégés both shouted out their imprisoned CEO and later took part in crowd-pleasing performances.

 

Drake brought out Young Jeezy, after he ran through his own "Fireworks" and "Over," and the pair debuted the remix to the Snowman's latest, "Lose My Mind."

 

Young Money's leading lady was at the center of two performances: Ludacris' show-ending set and Diddy's Dirty Money showcase. Minaj was as colorful as ever, and the femcee was sexy in an outfit as tight as her razor-sharp rhymes. The Queens rapper shouted out her fellow female rhyme-slingers, helping to dial down the back-and-forth between her and Lil Kim.

 

Prince and John Legend were separately honored, the latter for his humanitarian efforts. Beyoncé's collaboration with Lady Gaga, "Telephone," took home the coveted Video of the Year award. Gary Coleman, Lena Horne and Teddy Pendergrass were recognized, with each dying in the past 12 months.



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