With the upcoming Billboard Awards showing us how not to do a Prince tribute. [Booking Madonna, really?] It’s time for BET to do what they do best.
It may have been tacky to say out loud in the days after Prince died, but admit it, by then end of the week, you and your friends and co-workers were debating over who the BET Awards should have in their Prince tribute. For years, the BET Awards were unofficially given the responsibility of properly paying tribute to every Black artist that died that year since it was likely that the Grammys and the MTV Video Music Awards weren’t going to do it right.
Who can forget in 2009 when they had to completely shift their entire production when Michael Jackson died just three days before the event was set to air. For the most part, they succeeded by having New Edition open up the show performing Jackson 5 songs and host Jamie Foxx wear different MJ-inspired outfits throughout the night. Even though the last-minute effort got some mixed reviews at the time, the 2009 telecast is still the highest rated BET Awards to this day.
Seeing as how the 2016 BET Awards is set to air on June 26, they will have had at least two months to figure out just how to properly pay tribute to Prince. Since his creative fingerprint can be found in almost every artist that has come after him, it’s easy to just lump together everybody for a big Purple Rain medley. But no. This night has to be properly executed or else they leave the door open for the MTV Awards or the Grammys to upstage them again.
So here it is, a list of modern, active artists the BET Awards BETTER have in their tribute this year.