Drake, Olivia Rodrigo, BTS & All the Record-Setters at the 2022 Billboard Music Awards

Image Source: NME

Olivia Rodrigo was named the top winner at the 2022 Billboard Music Awards, which were held Sunday (May 15) at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, just 16 months after she rose to fame with the popular track “drivers license.” 

Rodrigo received seven trophies, making him the most successful new artist in BBMA history. Next, an R&B group, won eight wins in 1998, while R&B diva Ashanti won eight awards in 2002. Rodrigo’s first album, Sour, debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 chart. This is the third year in a row that a debut album has won the top prize. When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? by Billie Eilish won two years ago. Last year, Pop Smoke’s Shoot for the Stars, Aim for the Moon won.

Ye (previously Kanye West) took home the most honors of any male artist this year, with six. In both the gospel and Christian categories, he won top artist, top album, and top song. This increases Ye’s career BBMA total to 17, tying him for sixth place all-time with Eminem. For the third year in a row, Ye has been named top gospel musician. He also won top gospel song for the third time in a row and top gospel album for the second time in a row. (The gospel awards were established in 2016.)

The three artists with the most career BBMA honors each won multiple awards on the night, which allows them to retain their win, place and show rankings. Drake won five awards, upping his total to 34. Taylor Swift won four, advancing her total to 29. Justin Bieber won five, hiking his total to 26.

Drake was named top artist for the record-breaking third time. He also won top male artist for the third time in a row, top rap artist for the fourth time in a row, and best rap album for the third time in a row (for Certified Lover Boy).

Swift has claimed the top Billboard 200 artist for the sixth time in a row. She received the honor the previous year as well. She is the first woman to win in this major category two years in a row. Swift also took home the prize for best country artist, which she had previously won in 2011 and 2013. This makes her the only three-time winner in the category’s history, joining Garth Brooks. Red (Taylor’s Version) took home the prize for best country album, which the original Red earned in 2013. Swift has won four times in that category, matching Brooks’ record. The biggest shock: Swift was named top female country artist for the first time. The surprise is that at this stage of her career, this long-time award winner can still win something for the first time.

Bieber made history by being the first artist in BBMA history to win the #1 Hot 100 song several times. He earned this year for his chart-topping collaboration with The Kid LAROI, “Stay.” He won four years ago for his appearance on Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee’s genre-blending “Despacito.”

BTS took home three accolades this year, more than any other group or pair. The K-pop septet won top duo/group for the third time, tying them for the most victories in the category with another youthquake-starting band, One Direction.

Lady Gaga earned top dance/electronic artist for the third year in a row, which is surprising given that she also had time to feature in the buzzy film House of Gucci and produce a Grammy-winning traditional pop album with Tony Bennett during this time. Gaga also won in this category in 2011-12, giving her a total of five wins and putting her ahead of The Chainsmokers as the category’s all-time winner. 

For the third time, Bad Bunny was named top Latin artist, although female musicians won the other two Latin categories. KGO516 by Karol G was named best Latin album, the first by a female performer since Jenni Rivera’s La Misma Gran Seora in 2013. Kali Uchis’ “telepata” won top Latin song, giving her the first female artist to win since Shakira won in 2011 for a collaboration with Freshlyground.

Dan + Shay won top country duo/group for the third time. This allows them to pull ahead of Florida Georgia Line as the top winners in the history of the category, which originated in 2018.

Silk Sonic’s “Leave the Door Open,” the Grammy-winning valentine to old-school R&B, won top R&B song. Bruno Mars, who partners with Anderson .Paak in Silk Sonic, won in this category four years ago with “That’s What I Like.” Mars is the third artist to win twice in this category, following Pharrell Williams and The Weeknd.

The Billboard Music Awards are produced by MRC Live & Alternative, a division of MRC. MRC and Penske Media are co-parent companies of Billboard.


Opinions expressed by San Francisco Post contributors are their own.

Allison Corrigan

I’m Allison and I am human rights activist and LGBTQIA+ defender. I finished my degree graduate studies on Public Administration and I spend most of my free time in contributing written works about community development, public administration and lifestyle.

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