On the night when Black culture celebrated its biggest artists, athletes, and other entertainers on BET, rising R&B songstress Coco Jones shined brightly.
Yesterday (June 25), the network broadcasted its annual BET Awards live. This year’s event was special because it paid homage to 50 years of hip hop with a several celebrations. Artists spanning multiple decades took the stage, but hip hop wasn’t the only genre displayed at the ceremony.
During the show, Jones graced the audience with a soulful performance of her chart-topping 2022 hit single “ICU.” Many viewers online compared the segment to a feeling once felt when listening to an R&B singer from the ’90s perform. Through her hard work as an artist, Jones reaped more than the benefit of singing a song on the BET Awards stage.
— BET (@BET) June 26, 2023
The 25-year-old “Bel-Air” actress also stood before the audience to accept the Best New Artist accolade. She became the first female R&B singer to win the category since SZA in 2018. During Jones’ acceptance speech, the Tennessee-raised talent became emotional as she spoke about her journey to where she is now. “I am so happy. Thank you, Jesus,” Jones said as she fought back tears. “Thank you, BET. I remember when I did ‘106 & Park’ with y’all. I was 16 in the tight, little gray skinny jeans and my sneakers. It’s been a long journey. Thank you, guys, for rocking with me the whole time. Thank you so much to my culture, who has stood beside me, and we were raised together, you know. It’s been a really long, long journey.”
— BET (@BET) June 26, 2023
“Thank you so much to my team,” she added before saying, “Thank you, guys, for taking a chance on me. I didn’t have anything going for me at that time, so thank you. Um, and I just wanna thank God so much for keeping me when I didn’t understand. And for all of my Black girls, we do have to fight a little harder to get what we deserve, but don’t stop fighting. Even when it doesn’t make sense, you’re not sure how you’re going to get out of those circumstances. Keep pushing. ‘Cause we are deserving of great things, y’all. And I’mma continue to give y’all my everything. Thank you, guys, so much.”
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