Kendrick Lamar dominated the 2023 BET Hip Hop Awards, clinching four top categories: Hip Hop Artist of the Year, Best Live Performer, Lyricist of the Year, and Video Director of the Year alongside Dave Free. The ceremony was taped at Atlanta’s Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre and aired on Tuesday (Oct. 10) night.
The Compton rapper became the first musician to secure Hip Hop Artist of the Year three times. Additionally, his victory in the Best Live Performer category brought him level with Kanye West and JAY-Z, each with four wins. Lamar also extended his reign in Lyricist of the Year with a ninth trophy, while his collaboration with Dave Free made them the first directors to win back-to-back since Hype Williams in 2009 through 2012.
Besides Lamar, several other artists garnered accolades. Drake and 21 Savage took home two trophies, including Hip Hop Album of the Year for Her Loss, which topped the Billboard 200 in November 2022. The duo also clinched Best Duo or Group. Elsewhere, Lil Uzi Vert’s “Just Wanna Rock” won Song of the Year and Best Hip Hop Video.
Moreover, Lil Durk and J. Cole secured Best Collaboration and Impact Track for “All My Life.” It marked the North Carolina native’s record fourth win in the latter category, a laurel acknowledging tracks that advance culture through social or political discourse.
Meanwhile, Metro Boomin broke another personal best by becoming the first beatmaker to win Producer of the Year three times. Ice Spice was also named Best Breakthrough Hip Hop Artist, marking the first time women have won this segment consecutively. In 2022, GloRilla snagged the achievement.
Apart from celebrating the past year’s achievements, the event paid tribute to hip hop’s 50th anniversary. Swizz Beatz and Timbaland were honored with the Rock The Bells Cultural Influence Award.
The superproducers also revealed that they’ll be bringing Verzuz back after regaining ownership. Swizz revealed, “Like Tim said, we own Verzuz again. We got quiet for a minute, but we’re gonna come back strong and show you what it is. That wasn’t just something for the pandemic; that’s something for the world.”
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