2015 Billboard Music Awards – Full Recap & Winners’ List!

Jason Merritt/Getty Images
Jason Merritt/Getty Images
Jason Merritt/Getty Images

The 2015 Billboard Music Awards, hosted by hip-hop artist and actor Ludacris, and TV host and supermodel Chrissy Teigen, was an amazing night of show-stopping musical performances, never-before-seen superstar duos, and explosive moments! Teigens quick wit and ability to play to the crowd, and Ludacris comedic timing and hosting experience made this unexpected pair rival some of Americas favorite hosting duos. The show aired live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on ABC.

Taylor Swift was the nights big winner, taking home 8 awards including Top Artist, Top Female Artist, Top Billboard 200 Artist, Top Hot 100 Artist, Top Digital Songs Artist, Top Billboard 200 Album (“1989”), Top Streaming Song (Video) (“Shake It Off”) and the fan voted Billboard Chart Achievement Award sponsored by Samsung. Swift also opened the show with the world debut of her highly anticipated music video for Bad Blood, the next single off her album 1989. The video, directed by Joseph Kahn and produced by Taylor Swift, included cameos from some of Swifts best friends including Jessica Alba, Lily Aldridge, Cindy Crawford, Cara Delevingne, Lena Dunham, Selena Gomez, Ellie Goulding, Gigi Hadid, Mariska Hargitay, Martha Hunt, Karlie Kloss, Kendrick Lamar, Ellen Pompeo, Serayah, Hailee Steinfeld, Hayley Williams, and Zendaya. Swift was on hand to then introduce legendary rock band, Van Halen, who performed their iconic hit Panama, marking the bands first-ever performance on an awards show with Eddie, Alex, Wolfgang Van Halen and David Lee Roth. Van Halen started the nights performances off with a bang, getting the crowd on their feet and rocking out!

Sam Smith, Iggy Azalea and Pharrell Williams all followed Swift with 3 awards each. Smith took home Top Male Artist, Top Radio Songs Artist, and Top New Artist, which he accepted via a homemade video from his hospital bed, where he is recovering from vocal cord surgery. Azalea received Top Streaming Artist, Top Rap Artist and Top Rap Song (“Fancy,” featuring Charli XCX); and Williams was awarded Top R&B Artist, Top R&B Album (“G I R L”) and Top R&B Song (“Happy”).

Performance duo Meghan Trainor and John Legend earned two trophies each. Legend received two awards for his love ballad All of Me (Top Radio Song, Top Streaming Song [Audio]), while Trainor received two for her feel-good hit All About That Bass (Top Hot 100 Song, Top Digital Song). Jason Aldean, Hozier, Enrique Iglesias and One Direction all took home two trophies as well.

Returning to the Billboard Music Awards performance stage after 17 years, Mariah Carey brought the audience to their feet with a medley of her classic debut single — and first Billboard Hot 100 No. 1 hit — Vision of Love and new single Infinity. And Carey wasnt the only singer bringing a sense of nostalgia to the stage. Simple Minds, in honor of the 30thanniversary of The Breakfast Club performed their No. 1 Hot 100 hit Dont You (Forget About Me), which has become synonymous with the film itself and topped the chart exactly 30 years ago this week. John Hughes darling and The Breakfast Club star Molly Ringwald was on-hand to welcome the band to the stage. Another ’80s throwback came in the form of an explosive, neon-hued performance from music superstars Britney Spears and Iggy Azalea who brought their new single Pretty Girls to the stage for the first time ever.

Jussie Smollett, Bryshere Yazz Gray, and Estelle delivered a powerful rendition of stand-out song Conquerer and viewer favorite Youre So Beautiful from their breakout hit show Empire. The night was not short on memorable collaborations with duets from Nicki Minaj featuring David Guetta, Little Big Town with Faith Hill, Fall Out Boy with Wiz Khalifa, and Pitbull featuring Chris Brown. Solo artists also dominated the stage, with extraordinary performances by Kelly Clarkson, Hozier, Nick Jonas, Tori Kelly, Ed Sheeran, and Kanye West, who closed out the night with a commanding rendition of his hit All Day.

While the majority of the broadcast was focused on high-energy, one-of-a-kind performances, there were several touching tributes to some of the great artists whove passed away in recent months, including B.B. King, who received a heartfelt commemoration from host Ludacris as the camera panned to one of Kings iconic Lucille guitars, which was on display on stage. Vegas hometown band, Imagine Dragons, delivered a special rendition of Stand By Me in honor of the late Ben E. King, whose family was in the audience for the moving moment. During Wiz Khalifa, Charlie Puth and Lindsey Stirlings powerful performance of the Furious 7 anthem See You Again, a poignant clip of the film’s Paul Walker was shown to remember the actor and Ludacris longtime friend and colleague.

The musical acts werent the only stars taking over the stage at this years show. Presenters throughout the broadcast included 50 Cent, Lily Aldridge, Kaitlyn Bristowe, Charli XCX, Laverne Cox, Hannah Davis, Celine Dion, Brett Eldredge, the cast of Entourage, Fifth Harmony, Florida Georgia Line, Taraji P. Henson, Kendall and Kylie Jenner, Kira Kazantsev, Danica McKellar, Idina Menzel, NE-YO, Britt Nilsson, One Direction, Rita Ora, Pentatonix, Ellen Pompeo, Prince Royce, Tracee Ellis Ross, Hailee Steinfeld, and Zendaya.

See below for a full list of winners.


Ariana Grande
One Direction
Katy Perry
Sam Smith
**Taylor Swift

Top New Artist:
5 Seconds of Summer
Iggy Azalea
**Sam Smith
Meghan Trainor

Top Male Artist:
Pharrell Williams
Ed Sheeran
**Sam Smith
Justin Timberlake

Top Female Artist:
Iggy Azalea
Ariana Grande
Katy Perry
**Taylor Swift
Meghan Trainor

Top Duo/Group:
5 Seconds of Summer
Florida Georgia Line
Maroon 5
**One Direction

Top Billboard 200 Artist:
One Direction
Ed Sheeran
Sam Smith
**Taylor Swift

Top Hot 100 Artist:
Iggy Azalea
Ariana Grande
Sam Smith
**Taylor Swift
Meghan Trainor

Top Digital Songs Artist:
Iggy Azalea
Ed Sheeran
Sam Smith
**Taylor Swift
Meghan Trainor

Top Radio Songs Artist:
John Legend
Maroon 5
Ed Sheeran
**Sam Smith
Taylor Swift

Top Touring Artist
Lady Gaga
**One Direction
Katy Perry
The Rolling Stones
Justin Timberlake

Top Social Artist:
**Justin Bieber
Miley Cyrus
Selena Gomez
Ariana Grande
Taylor Swift

Top Streaming Artist:
** Iggy Azalea
Ariana Grande
Nicki Minaj
Taylor Swift
Meghan Trainor

Top R&B Artist:
Chris Brown
John Legend
Trey Songz
**Pharrell Williams

Top Rap Artist:
**Iggy Azalea
J. Cole
Nicki Minaj
Rae Sremmurd

Top Country Artist:
Jason Aldean
Luke Bryan
**Florida Georgia Line
Brantley Gilbert
Blake Shelton

Top Rock Artist:
Fall Out Boy

Top Latin Artist
J Balvin
Juan Gabriel
Enrique Iglesias
Prince Royce
**Romeo Santos

Top Dance/Electronic Artist
Clean Bandit
**Calvin Harris
Lindsey Stirling

Top Christian Artist
Casting Crowns


Top Billboard 200 Album:
Maroon 5 V
Pentatonix Thats Christmas To Me
Ed Sheeran x
Sam Smith In the Lonely Hour
**Taylor Swift 1989

Top Soundtrack:
The Fault in Our Stars
Fifty Shades of Grey
Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Mix: Vol. 1
Into the Woods

Top R&B Album
Beyonce Beyonce
Chris Brown X
Michael Jackson Xscape
John Legend Love in the Future
**Pharrell G I R L

Top Rap Album:
**J. Cole 2014 Forest Hill Drive
Drake If Youre Reading This Its Too Late
Nicki Minaj The Pinkprint
Iggy Azalea The New Classic
Eminem The Marshall Mathers LP 2

Top Country Album:
**Jason Aldean Old Boots, New Dirt
Garth Brooks Man Against Machine
Luke Bryan Crash My Party
Brantley Gilbert Just As I Am
Miranda Lambert Platinum

Top Rock Album:
AC/DC Rock or Bust
The Black Keys Turn Blue
**Coldplay Ghost Stories
Hozier Hozier
Lorde Pure Heroine

Top Latin Album:
Juan Gabriel Los Duo
**Enrique Iglesias Sex and Love
Romeo Santos Formula: Vol. 2
Santana Corazon
Marc Anthony 3.0

Top Dance/Electronic Album
Avicii True
Disclosure Settle
Calvin Harris Motion
Skrillex Recess
** Lindsey Stirling Shatter Me

Top Christian Album:
**Lecrae Anomaly
Casting Crowns Thrive
MercyMe Welcome to the New
NEEDTOBREATHE Rivers in the Wasteland
Chris Tomlin Love Ran Red


Top Hot 100 Song:
Iggy Azalea Feat. Charli XCX Fancy
John Legend All of Me
Sam Smith Stay With Me
Taylor Swift Shake It Off
**Meghan Trainor All About That Bass

Top Digital Song:
Mark Ronson Featuring Bruno Mars Uptown Funk!
Sam Smith Stay With Me
Taylor Swift Shake It Off
** Meghan Trainor All About That Bass
Pharrell Williams Happy

Top Radio Song:
**John Legend All of Me
Nico & Vinz Am I Wrong
Sam Smith Stay With Me
Pharrell Williams Happy

Top Streaming Song (Audio)
Iggy Azalea Feat. Charli XCX Fancy
Hozier Take Me to Church
**John Legend All of Me
Sam Smith Stay With Me
Tove Lo Habits (Stay High)

Top Streaming Song (Video)
Idina Menzel Let It Go
Bobby Shmurda Hot Boy
Taylor Swift Blank Space
**Taylor Swift Shake It Off
Meghan Trainor All About That Bass

Top R&B Song:
Chris Brown Featuring Lil Wayne, French Montana, Too $hort & Tyga Loyal
Jason Derulo Feat. 2 Chainz Talk Dirty
Jeremih Featuring YG Dont Tell Em
John Legend All of Me
**Pharrell Happy

Top Rap Song:
**Iggy Azalea Feat. Charli XCX Fancy
Iggy Azalea Feat. Rita Ora Black Widow
Big Sean Featuring E-40 I Dont F**k With You
Nicki Minaj Anaconda
Bobby Shmurda Hot Boy

Top Country Song:
**Jason Aldean Burnin It Down
Luke Bryan Play It Again
Sam Hunt Leave the Light On
Florida Georgia Line Featuring Luke Bryan This Is How We Roll
Florida Georgia Line Dirt

Top Rock Song:
Bastille Pompeii
Coldplay A Sky Full of Stars
Fall Out Boy Centuries
**Hozier Take Me to Church
Paramore Aint It Fun

Top Latin Song:
J Balvin Featuring Farruko 6 AM
**Enrique Iglesias Featuring Descemer Bueno & Gente de Zona Bailando
Romeo Santos Eres Mia
Romeo Santos Featuring Drake Odio
Romeo Santos Propuesta Indecente

Top Dance/Electronic Song:
Clean Bandit Featuring Jess Glynne Rather Be
Disclosure Featuring Sam Smith Latch
**DJ Snake & Lil Jon Turn Down For What
Ariana Grande Featuring Zedd Break Free
Calvin Harris Summer

Top Christian Song
Francesca Battistelli He Knows My Name
Hillsong Oceans (Where Feet May Fail)
MercyMe Greater
newsboys We Believe
**Carrie Underwood Something In The Water

Billboard Chart Achievement Award
Iggy Azalea
**Taylor Swift
Meghan Trainor

Written by Juliet Schroder

Juliet Schroder

Juliet is the founder and executive producer/host of Celeb Secrets and Celeb Secrets Country. When not reporting on the latest news in pop culture and country music, she enjoys traveling, spending time with friends and family, and exploring the latest fashion trends.

Juliet holds a B.S. in marketing from St. John's University.

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