Both Bruno Mars and Cardi B have already had big years with a lot of important award wins and records set. At the 2017 Soul Train Awards, they added more feathers to their caps. The ceremony aired Sunday on BET and BET HER and was hosted by Erykah Badu. Throughout the night, Badu had a number of unique looks, each with an incredible hat, all of which were large showpieces. This is her third year hosting and she led the show with humor and heart. “This is for Kap,” Badu said as she took a knee towards the top of the show. Members of the audience raised their fists in solidarity.
As always, the red carpet had all kinds of fabulous fashion on display. Highlights were Tamar Braxton, Kehlani, and Jessie J. As for the gents, Joe Jackson showed off some swagger with his pinstripe suit and George Clinton showed off some flair. Right before Badu’s moment of honoring Colin Kaepernick, SWV opened the show with a medley of some of their hits. Despite being nominated several times during their 25-year career, the Sisters With Voices never won before this year, when they were honored with the Soul Train Lady of Soul award.
Bruno Mars was nominated for six awards and left with five wins. The 24K Magic singer left the ceremony with trophies for Best R&B/Soul Male Artist, Video of the Year, Album/Mixtape of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Dance Performance. Behind Mars, SZA finished the night with two awards. She took home Best New Artist and Best R&B/Soul Female Artist. Solange had even more nominations than Mars, but she left with only one trophy, the Ashford & Simpson Songwriter’s Award for “Cranes in the Sky.” Cardi B took home the Rhythm & Bars Award for her hit “Bodak Yellow.”
Toni Braxton received a special honor with the Don Cornelius Soul Train Legend Award. Braxton proved her legend status with her medley performance during the ceremony. Several audience members were moved to tears at Braxton’s singing. Twitter exploded with love for the legend, with compliments for her flawless fashion and her powerful pipes.
Other great performances were by Tamar Braxton, Tank, Kirk Franklin, and 112. The Soul Cypher featured Fantasia, Bilal, Mali Music, and Faith Evans. The four made very clear that “soul music isn’t going anywhere.” The Cypher ended with the four singers coming together in perfect harmony. All in all, the 2017 Soul Train Awards was a fun show full of great music.