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Los Angeles, CA – 

Kelly Rowland had some words for attendees at the 2022 American Music Awards who heckled Chris Brown after he won an award.

On Sunday night (November 20), Rowland announced Breezy as the winner of the Favorite Male R&B Artist category at the AMAs when some members of the audience inside Los Angeles’ Microsoft Theater had a less-than-enthusiastic response. As the former Destiny’s Child member began to speak, she made a point to address those in the crowd who booed and defend Brown.

“Now, Chris Brown is not here tonight, so I’m accepting this award on his behalf,” Rowland said as some attendees began to voice their displeasure. “Excuse me, chill out. But I want to tell Chris thank you so much for making great R&B music, and I want to tell him thank you for being an incredible performer.”

She added: “I’ll take this award, bring it to you. I love you, congratulations and congratulations to all the nominees in this category.”

Chris Brown beat out The Weeknd, Brent Faiyaz, Lucky Daye and Giveon to win Favorite Male R&B Artist.

The Virginia native was due to headline a tribute to the late Michael Jackson to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Thriller during the AMAs, but his performance was canceled at the last minute without explanation.

Breezy revealed his performance had been axed the day before the awards in a video posted on Instagram showing him rehearsing the set with a group of dancers. The clip started with Brown and two women performing to his latest single, “Under The Influence,” before the music transitioned to the intro gongs of Michael Jackson’s “Beat It.”

The video continued showing more of the performance that incorporated other classics from Thriller, such as “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’,” “Billie Jean” and “Thriller.” “WOULDVE been the ama performance,” Brown wrote in the comments section, “but they cancelled me for reasons unknown. [shrug emoji].”

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The AMAs’ decision drew backlash from a number of Chris Brown’s musical peers. Jermaine Dupri warned that Black music is “in trouble” in a video posted to his Instagram page, while fellow R&B singer Tank demanded an explanation from the AMAs.

“We wanna know why,” the Sex, Love & Pain crooner asked. “We need a reason. You hire our brother Chris Brown. You send him through rehearsals. He’s creating one of the most epic performances ever. And then you cancel it. You pull the rug out from under him and all the hard working people around him. You hired him.”

Although Chris Brown’s set was nixed, the 2022 AMAs still saw performances from a number of Hip Hop and R&B stars such as GloRilla, Cardi B, Lil Baby, J.I.D, Ari Lennox and others.

Meanwhile, Kendrick Lamar took home two awards for Favorite Male Hip Hop Artist and Favorite Hip Hop Album (Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers), Nicki Minaj won Favorite Female Hip Hop Artist and Future walked away with Favorite Hip Hop Song (“Wait For U”).