Nicki Minaj honours Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston as she shines a light on mental health in Vanguard Video speech at VMAs

‘Twas a successful night for the rap queen (Picture: Getty)

Nicki Minaj honoured some music legends in her acceptance speech as she won big at the 2022 .

The rapper took home the coveted Vanguard Video award, which is also known as the lifetime achievement award and is ‘presented to artists for their outstanding contributions and profound impact on music video and popular culture’.

Previous recipients have included The Beatles, David Bowie, and Madonna in the early years after the award was created in 1984, with the likes of Rihanna and bagging the trophy in recent years.

This year, the Super Bass hitmaker became the second female rapper in history after Missy Elliot.

The rapper said she had ‘never ever written a speech in her life’, but went offstage to retrieve her phone to read her notes as she accepted the award.

During her speech, the 39-year-old said she wishes ‘Jackson and Whitney Houston were here’, adding: ‘I wish people understood what they went through’.

Nicki was overjoyed to receive the Vanguard Video gong (Picture: Invision)
She delivered an epic performance of her biggest hits (Picture: Getty)

In reference to how the music stars struggled with their own mental health, she continued: ‘I wish people took mental health seriously, even for the people you think have perfect lives’.

Nicki went on to thank key people who inspired ‘me and my flow’ and those who gave her opportunities, naming other artists such as , , , and Rihanna.

She also thanked Taylor Swift, who put in a surprise appearance at the event, crediting her for a large chunk of Super Bass’ success, before Taylor stood up to applaud and encouraged everyone around her to do the same.

Nicki became the second female rapper to receive the trophy (Picture: Getty)
She shone a light on mental health struggles in her speech (Picture: Getty)

Members of Nicki’s fan club, dubbed the Barbz, presented the trophy to her and lovingly said that they owed the rapper ‘everything’ as they celebrated her career.

Nicki also performed an epic medley of her biggest hits at the awards in New Jersey, including Roman’s Revenge, Beez in the Trap, Chun‐Li and Moment 4 Life.

In true Nicki style, she donned an all-pink ensemble, with her outfit featuring a bedazzled long sleeve corset top and ombre skater skirt.

As well as receiving the highest honour of the night, Nicki was nominated for a mega 17 nominations in total and took home five awards.

Other talking points included as she made a surprise appearance with Jack Harlow to perform her noughties hit Glamorous.

The night was actually full of surprise appearances, as Johnny Depp made a virtual comeback as a moonperson, while Taylor Swift stunned everyone by announcing that in October.

MTV VMAs 2022 winners list

Artist of the Year

Bad Bunny WINNER

Ed Sheeran

Harry Styles

Jack Harlow

Lil Nas X

Lizzo

Song of the Year

Adele – Easy on Me

Billie Eilish – Happier Than Ever WINNER

Doja Cat – Woman

Elton John and Dua Lipa – Cold Heart (Pnau Remix)

Lizzo –  About Damn Time

The Kid Laroi and Justin Bieber – Stay

Album of the Year

Harry Styles – Harry’s House

Global Icon Award

Red Hot Chili Peppers

Video Vanguard Award

Nicki Minaj

Video of the Year

Taylor Swift – All Too Well (10 Minute Version) (Taylor’s Version)

Best New Artist, Presented by Extra Gum

Baby Keem

Dove Cameron WINNER

Gayle

Latto

Seventeen

Måneskin

Push Performance of the Year

September 2021: Griff – One Night

October 2021: Remi Wolf – Sexy Villain

November 2021: Nessa Barrett – I Hope Ur Miserable Until Ur Dead

December 2021: Seventeen – Rock With You WINNER

January 2021: Mae Muller – Better Days

February 2022: Gayle – abcdefu

March 2022: Sheneesa – R U That

April 2022: Omar Apollo – Tamagotchi

May 2022: Wet Leg – Chaise Longue

June 2022: Muni Long – Baby Boo

July 2022: Doechii – Persuasive

Best Collaboration

Drake featuring Future and Young Thug – Way 2 Sexy

Elton John and Dua Lipa – Cold Heart (Pnau Remix)

Lil Nas X and Jack Harlow – Industry Baby WINNER

Megan Thee Stallion and Dua Lipa – Sweetest Pie

Post Malone and The Weeknd – One Right Now

Rosalía featuring The Weeknd – La Fama

The Kid Laroi and Justin Bieber – Stay

Best Pop

Billie Eilish – Happier Than Ever

Doja Cat – Woman

Ed Sheeran – Shivers

Harry Styles – As It Was WINNER

Lizzo – About Damn Time

Olivia Rodrigo – Traitor

Best Hip-Hop

Eminem and Snoop Dogg – From the D 2 the LBC

Future featuring Drake and Tems – Wait for U

Kendrick Lamar – N95

Latto – Big Energy

Nicki Minaj featuring Lil Baby – Do We Have a Problem? WINNER

Pusha T – Diet Coke

Best Rock

Foo Fighters – Love Dies Young

Jack White – Taking Me Back

Muse – Won’t Stand Down

Red Hot Chili Peppers – Black Summer WINNER

Shinedown – Planet Zero

Three Days Grace – So Called Life

Best Alternative

Avril Lavigne featuring Blackbear – Love It When You Hate Me

Imagine Dragons and JID – Enemy

Machine Gun Kelly featuring Willow – Emo Girl

Måneskin – I Wanna Be Your Slave WINNER

Panic! At the Disco – Viva las Vengeance

Twenty One Pilots – Saturday

Willow and Avril Lavigne featuring Travis Barker – Grow

Best Latin

Anitta – Envolver WINNER

Bad Bunny – Tití Me Preguntó

Becky G and Karol G – Mamiii

Daddy Yankee – REMIX

Farruko – Pepas

J Balvin and Skrillex – In da Getto

Best R&B

Alicia Keys – City of Gods (Part II)

Chlöe – Have Mercy

HER – For Anyone

Normani featuring Cardi B – Wild Side

Summer Walker, SZA and Cardi B – No Love (Extended Version)

The Weeknd – Out Of Time WINNER

Best K-Pop

BTS – Yet to Come (The Most Beautiful Moment)

Itzy – Loco

Lisa – LALISA WINNER

Seventeen – Hot

Stray Kids – Maniac

Twice – The Feels

Video for Good

Kendrick Lamar – The Heart Part 5

Latto – P*ssy

Lizzo – About Damn Time WINNER

Rina Sawayama – This Hell

Stromae – Fils de joie

Best Metaverse Performance

Blackpink the Virtual – PUB WINNER

GBTS – Minecraft

Charli XCX – Roblox

Justin Bieber – An Interactive Virtual Experience – Wave

Rift Tour featuring Ariana Grande – Fortnite

Twenty One Pilots Concert Experience – Roblox

Best Longform Video

Billie Eilish – Happier Than Ever: A Love Letter to Los Angeles

Foo Fighters – Studio 666

Kacey Musgraves – Star-Crossed

Madonna – Madame X

Olivia Rodrigo – Driving Home 2 U

Taylor Swift – All Too Well (10 Minute Version) (Taylor’s Version) WINNER

Best Cinematography

Baby Keem and Kendrick Lamar – Family Ties

Camila Cabello ft Ed Sheeran – Bam Bam

Harry Styles – As It Was WINNER

Kendrick Lamar – N95

Normani ft Cardi B – Wild Side

Taylor Swift – All Too Well (10 Minute Version) (Taylor’s Version)

Best Direction

Baby Keem and Kendrick Lamar – Family Ties

Billie Eilish – Happier Than Ever

Ed Sheeran – Shivers

Harry Styles – As It Was

Lil Nas X and Jack Harlow – Industry Baby

Taylor Swift – All Too Well (10 Minute Version) (Taylor’s Version) WINNER

Best Art Direction

Adele – Oh My God

Doja Cat – Get Into It (Yuh)

Drake featuring Future and Young Thug – Way 2 Sexy

Kacey Musgraves – Simple Times

Lil Nas X and Jack Harlow – Industry Baby WINNER

Megan Thee Stallion & Dua Lipa - Sweetest Pie

Best Visual Effects

Billie Eilish – Happier Than Ever

Coldplay and BTS – My Universe

Kendrick Lamar – The Heart Part 5

Lil Nas X and Jack Harlow – Industry Baby WINNER

Megan Thee Stallion and Dua Lipa – Sweetest Pie

The Kid Laroi and Justin Bieber – Stay

Best Choreography

BTS – Permission to Dance

Doja Cat – Woman WINNER

FKA twigs featuring The Weeknd – Tears in the Club

Harry Styles – As It Was

Lil Nas X and Jack Harlow – Industry Baby

Normani featuring Cardi B – Wild Side

Best Editing

Baby Keem and Kendrick Lamar – Family Ties

Doja Cat – Get Into It (Yuh)

Olivia Rodrigo – Brutal

Rosalía – Saoko WINNER

Taylor Swift – All Too Well (10 Minute Version) (Taylor’s Version)

The Weeknd – Take My Breath

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