Will An Army Of Beyoncés Save "Run The World (Girls)" From Chart Oblivion?
Last night's Billboard Music Awards handed out popularity-contest trophies to the likes of Eminem, Justin Bieber, and Katy Perry, all of whom were rewarded for the copious amounts of radio play and sales they racked up in recent months. But the evening's real winner was probably Beyoncé, who was given the chance to jump-start her stalling single "Run The World (Girls)" with an impressive performance that married the concept behind "Single Ladies" with the idea of B clones and a fair amount of interplay with graphics projected on a screen behind her, then multiplied all that by a hundred or so. Clip after the jump.
The performance was certainly something, but it has yet to give Beyoncé much of a bump beyond the lifetime-achievementy Millennium Award presented to her by her mom post-performance; "Run The World (Girls)" is at No. 30 on the iTunes Store and at No. 35 on Amazon MP3. (The pessimistic side of me wants to think that any single that could conceivably be introduced by the riot-grrrly monologue "Men have been given the chance to rule the world. But ladies, our revolution has begun. Let's build a nation... women everywhere... run the world!" will never hit it big in a world where a seemingly animatronic Britney Spears reprising her disastrous video for "Gimme More" and performing a half-awake pole dance while listlessly lipsyncing, as she did when she joined Rihanna for a verse of the similarly lifeless "S&M," is seen as a good thing by anyone anywhere. Not to mention that even in this endlessly hip moment, the borrowed sounds of Major Lazer are a bit too abrasive for a wide pop audience.)
The winners list shouldn't be all that surprising to anyone who's watched the charts in even a passing way--Eminem, Taylor Swift, Katy Perry, and Justin Bieber all received multiple awards, thanks to their peaking at the exact right time:
The Awards' finalists and winners were determined by a combination of chart performances and social and streaming activity as chronicled in Billboard magazine and on Billboard.com during the eligibility period of February 28, 2010 through March 1, 2011.
So yeah, no big surprises, save Taio Cruz's "Dynamite" being the Hot 100 champ for the eligibiity period. Who saw that coming--sure, it hung around for 47 weeks, but only peaked at No. 2! He's like the pop-music Tortoise to Katy Perry's really annoying, always-shifting Hare.
Billboard Music Awards winners:
Top Artist: Eminem
Top New Artist: Justin Bieber
Top Male Artist: Eminem
Top Female Artist: Rihanna
Top Duo/Group: The Black Eyed Peas
Top Billboard 200 Artist: Taylor Swift
Top Hot 100 Artist: Katy Perry
Top Digital Songs Artist: Katy Perry
Top Radio Songs Artist: Rihanna
Top Touring Artist: U2
Top Social Artist: Justin Bieber
Top Streaming Artist: Justin Bieber
Top Digital Media Artist: Justin Bieber
Top Pop Artist: Lady Gaga
Top R&B Artist: Usher
Top Rap Artist: Eminem
Top Country Artist: Taylor Swift
Top Rock Artist: Train
Top Alternative Artist: Mumford & Sons
Top Latin Artist: Shakira
Top Dance/Electronic Artist: Lady Gaga
Top Christian Artist: Chris Tomlin
Top Billboard 200 Album: Eminem, Recovery
Top Pop Album: Justin Bieber, My World 2.0 / Katy Perry, Teenage Dream
Top R&B Album: Usher, Raymond v. Raymond
Top Rap Album: Eminem, Recovery
Top Country Album: Taylor Swift, Speak Now
Top Rock Album: Mumford & Sons, Sigh No More
Top Alternative Album: Mumford & Sons, Sigh No More
Top Latin Album: Enrique Iglesias, Euphoria
Top Dance/Electronic Album: Lady Gaga, The Fame
Top Christian Album: Skillet, Awake
Top Hot 100 Song: Taio Cruz, "Dynamite"
Top Digital Song: Taio Cruz, "Dynamite"
Top Radio Song: Bruno Mars, "Just The Way You Are"
Top Streaming Song (Audio): Nelly, "Just A Dream"
Top Streaming Song (Video): Justin Bieber Feat. Ludacris, "Baby"
Top Pop Song: Taio Cruz, "Dynamite"
Top R&B Song: Usher Feat. will.i.am, "OMG"
Top Rap Song: Eminem Feat. Rihanna, "Love The Way You Lie"
Top Country Song: Lady Antebellum, "Need You Now"
Top Rock Song: Train, "Hey, Soul Sister"
Top Alternative Song: Neon Trees, "Animal"
Top Latin Song: Shakira Feat. Freshleyground, "Waka Waka (This Time For Africa)"
Top Dance Song: Edward Maya & Vika Jigulina, "Stereo Love"
Top Christian Song: Chris Tomlin, "Our God"
Millennium Award: Beyoncé
Touring Award: U2
Icon Award: Neil Diamond