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Drake Wins Billboard Artist of the Decade Award, The Weeknd Dominates with Ten Wins

Canadian popstar Drake was honoured with the prestigious Artist of the Decade award at the Billboard Awards on Sunday night. Drake, who extended his record as the most decorated winner

Drake accepts the artist of the decade award at the Billboard Music Awards on Sunday, May 23, 2021, at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)

Canadian popstar Drake was honoured with the prestigious Artist of the Decade award at the Billboard Awards on Sunday night.

Drake, who extended his record as the most decorated winner in the history of the awards show to 29 wins, was surrounded by family and friends who presented him with the award. He surprised fans by bringing an unexpected guest on stage with him – his three-year-old son Adonis.

“I wanna dedicate this award to my friends, to my longtime collaborators … to my beautiful family, and to you,” he said, looking to Adonis and picking him up to kiss him.

Drake placed his first song on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 2009, and since has logged the most songs ever on the chart, with 232 entrees. He was also named top streaming songs artist Sunday.

Only two artists before him have earned the award: Mariah Carey, who was recognized for dominating the ‘90s, and Eminem, who previously took control of the charts in the ‘00s.

Meanwhile, The Weeknd was the night’s big winner, taking home 10 awards.

Among his prizes were best artist; top Hot 100 album for After Hours; and top Hot 100 song for Blinding Lights.

The star, whose real name is Abel Tesfaye, more than doubled his career total of Billboard Music Awards, having previously received nine trophies.

“I wanna take this opportunity to thank you, my parents,” he said. “I am the man I am today because of you. And thank you to my fans, of course. I do not take this for granted.”

The late rapper Pop Smoke was also a big winner: He posthumously earned five honors, including top new artist and top rap artist, while his debut — “Shoot for the Stars, Aim for the Moon” — won top rap album and top Billboard 200 album, which his mother accepted onstage.

Korean pop band BTS also picked up four prizes, winning best group for the second time in three years; and top social artist for the fifth consecutive year.

The band are now just one year short of equalling Justin Bieber’s six-year hold on the social award from 2011- 2016.

Stars like Taylor Swift, Lady Gaga and Kanye West won honors at the show though they didn’t attend. Machine Gun Kelly, who started in rap but has had recent success on the rock charts, won top rock artist and top rock album.

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