Music News

American Music Awards 2020: The Backstage Scene


Backstage at the American Music Awards, the mood remained upbeat and hopeful as the stars spoke about the experience of taking part in an awards show during the COVID-19 pandemic along with the silver linings they’ve found amid a challenging year.

Doja Cat, who took home multiple awards, including Best New Artist, said, “Obviously, everyone’s cooped up at home and we’re just trying to make the best of everything all year…[but] it’s the most creative I feel like I’ve been because of that…I feel blessed.”

When asked how she felt about the possibility of receiving a Grammy nomination on Tuesday, when the nominees are announced, Doja revealed she and her DJ have a bet: If she wins a Grammy, he has to have her name tattooed on his butt.

Dan + Shay won three awards, and backstage, they admitted that those wins mean more to them during this difficult year because they couldn’t see their fans in person.

“It’s just such a time for everybody,” said Dan Smyers.  “We’re at home, it’s like ‘Do people still like us?  What’s going on? Are we ever gonna be able to play a show again?’ But these moments when fans vote for us to win these awards…it means the world to us…it makes us feel good, especially in these crazy times. So it’s really rewarding.”

Bebe Rexha detailed just how difficult it was to rehearse for the show, given all the COVID-19 safety protocols they had to follow. “It was constant testing and you would go into the rehearsal space and every 45 minutes, it had to be aired out for 15 minutes and cleaned,” she explained. 

“I was tested two times a day for a week straight, so it’s been a very intense week and a lot of safety precautions, but it’s worth it!” she added. “Even though we’re in these tough times, we all know that we’re here to bring entertainment to people and you still feel that warmth.”

Singer and rapper 24KGoldn, who’s at number-one with his hit “Mood,” talked about having so much success at such a young age.

“It’s very surreal ’cause I literally turned 20 last week and I have the number one song in the world pretty much!” he said. “I feel like that’s not really a typical situation, but my whole life has never been typical either so…I should have expected the unexpected.”

Ciara said she’d managed to “power through” quarantine, even though earlier this year she was pregnant with her son Win, her second child with husband Russell Wilson and third, overall.

“I kinda feel like you have no choice but to be creative ’cause you’re in the same four walls every day,” she said. “And then being pregnant, it felt like the time was going really slow — it was the slowest pregnancy that I’ve had in life!”

G-Eazy, who presented an award, noted that the right thing to do next week is to avoid your family during Thanksgiving so as not to infect them.

“I think Zoom is gonna get a lot of traffic on Thanksgiving,” he laughed. “You gotta play it safe when it comes to family…just out of respect…you gotta consider each other and that’s what this is really reminding us all, y’know, think of each other and be respectful of each other…and take care of each other.”

“And if that means having to see you a screen, then that’s how we stay safe and get through this.”


By Andrea Dresdale
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