The weekend of May 20th was a really busy and fun weekend for Las Vegas. EDC was back in town that weekend. Also the Las Vegas Knights had their semifinals match that weekend at T-Mobile Arena. However, I took a different approach than those two. I went classier and went to the Billboard Music Awards that were being held at Grand Garden Arena at the MGM.
If you didn’t know the Grand Garden Arena was where they held K-Pop Masters years ago. This was the first time for me to be there though. When I got there it was so hectic. A lot of people! But understandable. It was just like my experience before the show at the American Music Awards again haha. Actually when I finally got inside and saw the stage set up it totally reminded me of how the AMAs stage looked too. Before the show even started I already felt the presence of ARMY in the audience as they were already practicing their fan chants counting down to the start of the show. When the show started Kelly Clarkson, this year’s host, started it by talking about the recent school shooting that took place in Texas which I liked because she set the tone for the rest of the show that we should just have a fun time that night but also remember what’s going on in the world and remind people that we can come together through a thing such as music and just feel united. They then did the introductions of everyone who was going to be featured that night on the awards show on the television screens in the arena; And then once I saw and heard BTS on those screens I was like, “This is it. This is really going to happen tonight! We are going to make big history again as a K-Pop community.” I’m just going to name off who performed throughout the night and who won the awards, because it’s hard remembering the exact order of the show entirely, because it was crazy fun. Then I’ll talk about BTS’s performance and award they won in more detail. So first off the performances. Performances of the night included stages by the likes of Christina Aguilera and Demi Lovato, Arianna Grande, Dua Lipa, Shawn Mendes, John Legend, Ed Sheeran, Jennifer Lopez, Janet Jackson, Macklemore and Kesha, Kelly Clarkson, Camila Cabello and Pharrell, and Salt-N-Pepa. They actually had some good collab stages this year and it was cool to see some artists perform songs for the first time not just BTS. They had a lot of awards too. Top 100 Song went to ‘Despacito’ again. I think it won at the AMAs too. Top Female Artist was Taylor Swift then they played a little tribute video to her success as well. Top EDM Artist award went to Chainsmokers. I liked how during their acceptance speech –they also payed homage to fellow EDM artist Avicii. I used to listen to some of his songs too, so it was pretty nice that they did that. Post Malone won Top Rap Song. Taylor Swift actually also won Top Selling Album! Then everyone payed tribute as this year BBMAs honored Janet Jackson as 2018’s Icon Award winner. Bruno Mars presented the award as well. Sam Hunt took home Top Country Song Award. Then Camila Cabello took home Billboard Chart Achievement Award. There was one more award of the night for Top Artist of the year, but I actually didn’t get to see who took home that award.
Now, let’s get on to the main attraction of the night. Well maybe just for me, ARMY, and other K-Pop fans out there. After continuous fan chants in the audience during commercial breaks for BTS which was starting to become funny because I could tell non-Kpop fans were starting to get annoyed, after Chainsmokers won the award for Top EDM Artist BTS were presented the Top Social Artist award with a landslide victory just like how they won it last year. They were pretty much up against the same nominees class they had last year too, so I was just waiting for it haha. The audience went crazy and I was so proud that BTS represented. I also liked the speech RM gave that their words carry weight in all of our hearts and help change lives. Jimin also slipped in a little Korean at the end and represented and paid respect for all of the other Koreans out there in the U.S. and back home and I was like, “Yesss!”. I’m also glad I was able to understand Jimin and knew what he said haha. I feel like it was good timing that they were presented with that award after Top EDM Artist, because EDM is almost close in style to K-Pop and BTS also worked with Chainsmokers before. Later on in the night I also got to see in person BTS perform their new title song FAKE LOVE even before they performed it on stage in Korea. Once again the arena went nuts. I think it was the loudest it was during the night as well –well besides when the Top Social Artist Award was being presented. It was so cool! I was one of the first ones to see the full choreography for FAKE LOVE performed and in person! It brought me back to unbelievable memories at the AMAs back in November of last year; but a little bit sweeter because besides the AMAs, the BBMAs where BTS first made their name known to a lot of people in America by taking home the award last year for Top Social Artist but not performing but saying to fans if given the opportunity they would love to perform on that Billboard Music Award stage. Therefore, being there in the same room with them as they got to accomplish that lifelong dream was indescribable and profound for me as well. I was glad that I was sitting next to some other BTS fans and also people that didn’t yet really know who BTS was, because we all had a fun next-level experience together. After BTS finished performing and the BBMAs went to commercial break, I actually decided to leave haha. That’s why I didn’t get to see who won Top Artist Award of the year; but hey, I still got my money’s worth and have no problem/regrets leaving haha(plus I didn’t want to deal with post awards show traffic again).
After the BBMAs, I didn’t feel like going home yet and calling it a night. I wanted my night to stay legendary and turnt up. I actually already had a room reserved at Alexis Park Resort and went there and threw something to celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. I guess you can say it acted as an after party as well for BTS haha. I ordered Honey Pig on UberEats, had some soju, played some beer pong, watched a BBMAs replay on tv so I got to see another perspective of BTS winning the Top Social Artist Award and performing FAKE LOVE, then called it a night. Woke up the next morning still in a good mood.
Vegas Admin/ Concert Blogger