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The 2006 Billboard Music Awards


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The 2006 Billboard Music Awards


Multiple Nominated Group Nickelback

Direct from the legendary Las Vegas Strip and featuring performances and appearances by the year's chart-topping artists, The 2006 Billboard Music Awards recognizes the year's leading artists and songs as determined by actual performance on Billboard's weekly charts.

The 17th Annual Billboard Music Awards will air live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Monday, December 4 on Fox from 8:00-10:00 p.m. Scheduled to perform include the cast of "High School Musical" and "American Idol" alums Katharine McPhee and Chris Daughtry.

The past 12 months have been particularly good for one Canadian rock band, three Nashville upstarts, a once-imprisoned southern rapper and an R&B diva in the throes of a major comeback. Now, Nickelback, Rascal Flatts, T.I. and Mary J. Blige are being recognized for their achievements as finalists in a leading five categories each for the 2006 Billboard Music Awards.


Janet Jackson performs the opening number at the 2006 Billboard

Music Awards with her dancing ensemble

The show boasts performances by Janet Jackson, the Killers, Gwen Stefani, Fergie, the Fray, Mary J. Blige and Ludacris featuring Pharrell and Young Jeezy. Bowling For Soup, Carrie Underwood, Carmen Electra, Dave Navarro, Flavor Flav, Three 6 Mafia, Rihanna and Chris Brown will make appearances.

The hard-touring Nickelback is up for artist of the year and rock artist of the year, as well as duo/group of the year. Its 2005 Roadrunner release "All the Right Reasons" will vie for album of the year and rock album of the year. The set has sold 4 million copies in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

Rascal Flatts, which owns the second-highest selling album of 2006 with the Lyric Street/Hollywood set "Me and My Gang," is a finalist for artist of the year, duo/group of the year and country artist of the year. 'Gang' is also up for country album of the year.


Rapper T.I. displays his Billboard trophy

Thanks to his Grand Hustle/Atlantic set "King," rapper T.I. is up for R&B/hip-hop artist of the year, male R&B/hip-hop artist of the year, rap artist of the year, R&B/hip-hop album of the year and rap album of the year.

Blige, meanwhile, earned finalist nods in the female artist, R&B/hip-hop artist, female R&B/hip-hop artist, R&B/hip-hop album and R&B/hip-hop single categories. Her 2005 album, "The Breakthrough," has been one of this year's most consistent sellers, having shifted 2.6 million copies to date.

The diversity of the top awards finalists will be matched by the performers on the MGM Grand Garden stage. "We've got everything from Janet, Fergie and Gwen and their very stylized, theatrical performances, to the Fray, which will be a full on rock'n'roll moment without all the props and colors," said the show's talent producer, Bruce Gillmer.


Chris Brown shows off his multiple awards

Among the other multiple award finalists are Brown, Ne-Yo, Jamie Foxx, Kenny Chesney, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Sean Paul, Nelly Furtado featuring Timbaland, "High School Musical," Beyonce, Yung Joc, Dem Franchize Boyz, Shinedown and Three Days Grace. BMA winners are determined by performance on Billboard's weekly charts.

In addition, Tony Bennett with receive Century Award, Billboard's highest honor for creative achievement. The show celebrates the record-buying, Internet-downloading and radio-listening public's favorite songs, albums and performers, creating a true souvenir of the year in music.

Based on sales data compiled by Nielsen SoundScan and radio information monitored by Nielsen Broadcast Data Systems, Billboard's music charts are the world's most authoritative. Winners are determined by the 2006 year-end charts, which will reflect the weekly Billboard charts published from December 2005 through November 2006.

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2006 Billboard Music Awards
(Winners Appear Highlighted In Red)

Artist of the Year
Chris Brown
Rascal Flatts

Male Artist of the Year
Chris Brown
Sean Paul

Female Artist of the Year
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Mary J. Blige Dominates Billboard Music Awards


Mary J. Blige

Earning a whopping nine awards, R&B veteran Mary J. Blige dominated the field at the 2006 Billboard Music Awards, held Monday, December 4 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. The 35-year-old singer nabbed a number of R&B/hip-hop honors, including album, "The Breakthrough," and song of the year, "Be Without You," as well as Hot 100 airplay song of the year.

"I've never received this many awards at any time in my career . . . ever," Blige said backstage. "I remember a time when all my fans were crying and sad and going through hell. Now, we're trying to uplift each other and accept ourselves for who we are, even if nobody else does."

"American Idol" starlet Carrie Underwood and Atlanta rapper T.I. scored five statuettes each. T.I. dominated the rap category, winning artist and album of the year, "King." Underwood was presented with album of the year for her debut effort, "Some Hearts," and artist of the year honors in both overall and country categories.


Carrie Underwood

Newcomer and urban hitmaker Chris Brown won new artist of the year, as well as artist and male artist of the year. Rock troupe Nickelback also brought home three accolades: artist duo/group of the year, rock album of the year, "All the Right Reasons," and Hot 100 artists duo/or group of the year.

The Fray swept the digital category with three awards, including digital album and digital songs artist of the year. The quartet also worked in a performance of their single, "How To Save a Life," which has been prominently featured in the hit ABC drama, "Grey's Anatomy."

Rihanna won female artist of the year, female Hot 100 artist of the year and Pop 100 artist of the year categories. "I really can't feel my legs -- this is phenomenal," she said while accepting the trophy for best female artist. "That was a really tough category."


Tony Bennett

Nelly Furtado, Kenny Chesney, Three Days Grace and the soundtrack to Disney's "High School Musical" bagged one award each. Tony Bennett was also presented with the Billboard Century Award by longtime friend Stevie Wonder.

"[Wonder] is one of the best jazz singers in the world," said Bennett modestly. The 80-year-old jazz veteran earned his best charting position on The Billboard 200 earlier this year, with a No. 3 start for "Duets: An American Classic" on RPM/Columbia.

To open the broadcast, Janet Jackson performed a medley of "Pleasure Principle" and "So Excited." Fergie, along with Black Eyed Peas colleague will.i.am, tackled her recent hit "Fergalicious" amid a set decorate with peppermint imagery.


Janet Jackson

Ludacris and Pharrell teamed to perform the recent Hot 100 No. 1 hit "Money Maker," while Young Jeezy chipped in with his new single, "I Luv It." Blige was in amazingly strong voice on a medley of "Enough Cryin'" and "Take Me As I Am," while Gwen Stefani was flanked by dancers and wooden sheep for her new, yodel-happy single, "Wind It Up."

Courtney Love and the Killers (who were scheduled to perform but had to back out after frontman Brendan Flowers came down with laryngitis) presented the finale, a collaboration between Nickelback, Kid Rock and ZZ Top's Billy F. Gibbons on the latter group's "Tush." Other presenters during the night included Akon, Danity Kane, Jesse McCartney, Bow Wow, Dave Navarro, Big & Rich and Paula Abdul.

Finalists and winners were determined by actual performance on Billboard's charts, with sales data compiled by Nielsen SoundScan and radio play tracked by Nielsen Broadcast Data Systems.

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