Before presenting the award for Top Hot 100 Song of 2018 to Luis Fonsi for “Despacito,” the Chainsmokers’ Alex Pall and Drew Taggart told the thousands gathered at Las Vegas’ Grand Garden Arena that Avicii was “an artist who inspired so many in so many ways and meant so much to us and the EDM community.”
Added Halsey: “Everyone who worked with him would say that he was such a joy and that makes this tragedy all the more painful. It’s a reminder to all of us to be there and support and love our friends and family members who may be struggling with mental illness.”
The duo later mentioned Avicii a second time when picking up the award for Top Dance/Electronic act. Said Taggart: “We wanna dedicate this award to Avicii. … He is someone who made us believe that this is something we could do with our lives. Inspired all of us. Influenced our music and influence pop music in general. He will be missed and I hope he’s found peace.”
Avicii died on April 20 at the age of 28. His family later revealed that he took his own life. Unreleased music by Avicii, whose real name is Tim Bergling, may still be released, according to the president of the late star’s label, Geffen Records.
At the top of the show, BBMAs host Kelly Clarkson took an opportunity to remember Friday’s school shooting in Texas. Said “The Voice” coach: “I’m so sick of moments of silence — why don’t we do a moment of change? Why don’t we change what’s happening?”
— Billboard Music Awards (@BBMAs) May 21, 2018