Chris Brown is a double winner at the BET Awards
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Chris Brown made good on two of his six nominations during the first hour of Sunday's BET Awards.
The 21-year-old singer and the night's leading nominee won early awards for best male R&B artist and best collaboration for his song "Look At Me Now" with Lil Wayne and Busta Rhymes.
Brown accepted the collaboration award after performing a medley that including the winning track.
"Public speaking is not my strong suit," Brown said, thanking BET and his fans before passing the microphone to Wayne, who expressed gratitude to Brown for including him on the track. Busta Rhymes rapped his acceptance.
Earlier in the ceremony, Brown also thanked his fans and the network: "I appreciate all the support. I know it's been a long road, so I appreciate every blessing in front of me."
Lil Wayne also came on stage when Nicki Minaj accepted her award for best female hip-hop artist.
"I can't believe for the first time I get to share a moment like this with the person who saw me rapping on a staircase," she said of the rapper and producer, who was incarcerated when she won the same prize last year. "Lil Wayne, I love you."
Minaj was joined by Justin Bieber to present the male hip-hop artist award. Kanye West won but wasn't on hand to accept the award.
Instead of traditional awards-show winners' envelopes, winners were revealed on a tablet device provided by Sprint.
Diddy Dirty Money was named best group. Jaden Smith and Willow Smith were also early winners. The son and daughter of Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith tied as winners of the Young Stars award.
Mary J. Blige opened the show at the Shrine Auditorium, performing her hits "All Night Long" and "Real Love" before being joined by Anita Baker. The divas performed a duet of "Caught Up in the Rapture."
Rick Ross, Lil Wayne, DJ Khaled and Ace Hood shared the stage for "Hustle Hard."
Alicia Keys unveiled a new song, before lapsing into "A Woman's Worth," for which she was joined by Bruno Mars, and her breakthrough hit, "Fallin'."
Patti LaBelle will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award, and Steve Harvey will receive the Humanitarian Award.
More performances are planned, with Beyonce still set to take the stage.
Sandy Cohen can be reached at www.twitter.com/APSandy.
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