The 2018 iHeartRadio Music Awards brought the biggest names in entertainment and fans together from the historic, “Fabulous” Forum in Los Angeles to celebrate all things music live on TBS, TNT and truTV; on iHeartMedia radio stations nationwide; and the iHeartRadio app, the free all-in-one digital music, podcasting and live streaming radio service on Sunday, March 11. TV subscribers were also able to watch the iHeartRadio Music Awards on the TBS, TNT and truTV Apps.
The fan-fueled 2018 iHeartRadio Music Awards hosted by Hailey Baldwin and DJ Khaled brought the music of the iHeartRadio app to life with featured performances and incredible collaborations, including Ed Sheeran, Eminem featuring Kehlani, Cardi B featuring G-Eazy, Bon Jovi, Maroon 5, Camila Cabello, Charlie Puth and N.E.R.D.
Taylor Swift exclusively premiered the music video for her new smash hit single, “Delicate,” and Pharrell Williams presented Chance The Rapper with the 2018 iHeartRadio Innovator Award for his groundbreaking accomplishments in the music industry and his unsurpassable contributions to social causes. In addition, L’Oréal Paris and iHeartRadio presented Camila Cabello with the first-ever Fangirls Award, which recognizes a female artist who has pushed boundaries with her music and message while inspiring fans around the globe. And, Bon Jovi received the first-ever iHeartRadio Icon Award for their global impact on pop culture, longevity and continued relevance as a touring and radio force with a loyal fan base worldwide.
For the first time, iHeartRadio unveiled the Titanium Award, which recognized artists who have reached a threshold of a billion Total Audience Spins. This calculation is based on certified Mediabase airplay and is multiplied by the number of persons listening to the radio at the time of those plays, delivering total audience impression count. Winners of the award included Ed Sheeran; Bruno Mars; The Chainsmokers and Coldplay; James Arthur; Zedd and Alessia Cara; Charlie Puth; Shawn Mendes; Kygo and Selena Gomez; Imagine Dragons; Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee; Maroon 5; Rihanna; Niall Horan; Sam Hun; Zayn and Taylor Swift; DJ Snake; and DJ Khaled, Rihanna and Bryson Tiller as well as French Montana.
In addition, for the first time ever the 2018 iHeartRadio Music Awards presented seven awards in the seven nights leading up to the telecast. Winners of several categories including Judah and the Lion, Niall Horan, Thomas Rhett, Foo Fighters, Luis Fonsi, Luke Combs and Harry Styles announced that they won with an acceptance speech via iHeartRadio’s social accounts, with select speeches televised during the live broadcast.
The official hashtag of the evening, #iHeartAwards2018 trended #1 on Twitter Worldwide and in the U.S. in more than 30 cities. The iHeartRadio Music Awards also garnered over 216 billion social media impressions in the U.S alone
Additional highlights included:
- Cardi B opened the telecast by bringing out G-Eazy for an incredible performance featuring a crew of dancers, motorcycles, pyrotechnics and a medley of “Bartier Cardi,” “Motorsport,” “Finesse,” “No Limit” and her mega-hit “Bodak Yellow.” Later, during a memorable acceptance speech for “Best New Artist,” Cardi B exclusively revealed that her debut album would be dropping in April.
- Ed Sheeran accepted his iHeartRadio Music Award for “Song of the Year” via satellite from Melbourne, Australia where he is on tour. He then jumped into a once-in-lifetime
performance of his smash hit, “Perfect,” in the middle of a street filled with fans.
- Fangirls Award recipient Camila Cabello recreated Madonna’s iconic “Material Girl” video and rocked a pinkevening dress for her show-stopping performance of her mega-hit “Havana” with Young Thug and a bevy of tuxedo-clad male dancers.
- Paris Hilton brought her puppy, Diamond Baby, to present the fan-voted award for “Best Musician’s Pet” to Ariana Grande’s pooch Toulouse.
- Maroon 5 didn’t have fans waiting when they performed their chart-topping song, “Wait,” in front of a pop-deco stage design.
- Pharrell, the very first iHeartRadio Innovator Award honoree, presented the 2018 iHeartRadio Innovator Award to Chance The Rapper, who thanked James Brown, Ray Charles, Prince, Nicki Minaj, Taylor Swift and Beyonce in his inspiring acceptance speech.
- Before introducing Eminem, Big Sean was joined by Alex Moscou, one of the surviving students of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, who discussed the upcoming March For Our Lives in Washington D.C. and across the U.S.
- Eminem shared the stage with R&B sensation Kehlani, for a soul-stirring performance of their hit, “Nowhere Fast” about the current climate of the world that had everyone in the pit raising their hands as glitter later rained down on them.
- Global rock icons Bon Jovi performed their legendary hits “It’s My Life” and “You Give Love A Bad Name” and later accepted the first-ever iHeartRadio Icon Award from Olympic gold medalist Shaun White. During his speech, Jon Bon Jovi told the artists in attendance “We’ve been at this game a long time, and the only advice I’ll tell this incredible generation of incredible talent is just stay true to who you are and they’re gonna make you guys icons too someday.”
- During his incredible performance of his hit single, “How Long” Charlie Puth embraced fans by slapping hands as they sang along to every word.
- N.E.R.D. closed the show with an amazing performance of their hit, “Lemon” surrounded by a bevy of glitter-covered dancers led by the dancers from their iconic video for the song.
Award presenters of the March 11 telecast included Shaun White, Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs and Christian ‘King’ Combs, Adam Devine, Bebe Rexha, Big Sean, Dustin Lynch, Eve, G-Eazy, Halsey, Isla Fisher, Jenna Dewan-Tatum, Laverne Cox, Marshmello, Method Man, Paris Hilton, Rita Ora, The Chainsmokers and more.
In addition, the show featured celebrity guest appearances from 5SOS, Ashanti, Brad Goreski, Olympic Medalist Chris Mazdzer, Cody Simpson, Drake Bell, Jackie Cruz from Orange Is the New Black, Jake Miller, James Maslow, Justine Skye, Khalid, Lisa Loeb, Mackenzie Ziegler from Dance Moms, Ne-Yo, Sarah Hyland, Serayah McNeill from Empire, Teddi Mellencamp from The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills as well as Eris Baker and Lonnie Chavis from This is Us plus more.
Category winners were:
Song of the Year:
– “Shape Of You” – Ed Sheeran
Female Artist of the Year:
– Taylor Swift
Male Artist of the Year:
– Ed Sheeran
Best Duo/Group of the Year:
– Maroon 5
– “Something Just Like This” – The Chainsmokers and Coldplay
Best New Artist
– Cardi B
Best New Pop Artist:
– Niall Horan
Alternative Rock Song of the Year:
– “Feel It Still” – Portugal. The Man
Alternative Rock Artist of the Year:
– Imagine Dragons
Best New Rock/Alternative Rock Artist:
– Judah & The Lion
Rock Song of the Year:
– “Run” – Foo Fighters
Rock Artist of the Year:
Country Song of the Year:
– “Body Like A Back Road” – Sam Hunt
Country Artist of the Year:
– Thomas Rhett
Best New Country Artist:
– Luke Combs
Dance Song of the Year:
– “Stay” – Zedd and Alessia Cara
Dance Artist of the Year:
– The Chainsmokers
Hip-Hop Song of the Year:
– “Wild Thoughts” – DJ Khaled featuring Rihanna and Bryson Tiller
Hip-Hop Artist of the Year:
– Kendrick Lamar
Best New Hip-Hop Artist:
– Cardi B
R&B Song of the Year:
– “That’s What I Like” – Bruno Mars
R&B Artist of the Year:
– Bruno Mars
Best New R&B Artist:
Latin Song of the Year:
– “Despacito” – Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee
Latin Artist of the Year:
– Luis Fonsi
Best New Latin Artist:
Regional Mexican Song of the Year:
– “Adios Amor” – Christian Nodal
Regional Mexican Artist of the Year:
– Calibre 50
Best New Regional Mexican Artist:
– Christian Nodal
Producer of the Year:
– Andrew Watt
Best Lyrics: *Socially Voted Category
– “Slow Hands” – Niall Horan
Best Cover Song: *Socially Voted Category
– “The Chain” – Harry Styles
Best Fan Army presented by Taco Bell: *Socially Voted Category
– BTS – BTS