One Direction had a night to remember at the 2014 American Music Awards on Sunday after walking away with a trio of top honors, including Artist of the Year.
The British/Irish stars claimed the first prize of the Los Angeles event for Favorite Band, Duo Or Group – Pop/Rock and then added Favorite Pop/Rock Album for Midnight Memories and Artist of the Year, just hours after learning its new release Four had hit the top of the U.K. albums chart.
Accepting the first title, Liam Payne told the audience, “It’s been a real perfect (sic) day for us, our album’s just come out and we got a number one in the U.K. and now we’re stood here with an AMA.
“It’s absolutely amazing… America feels like a second home to us now, it’s been amazing how well we’ve been received out here so thank you so, so much.”
Katy Perry was also a triple winner – she and Sam Smith reigned supreme as the favorite pop/rock solo artists, with Perry accepting her award in a pre-taped speech from Australia, where she is currently on tour. She also claimed Single of the Year for “Dark Horse” and Favorite Adult Contemporary Artist.
Iggy Azalea, who led the nominees with six, only walked away with two trophies after beating Drake and Eminem in both the rap/hip-hop categories for best artist and best album for her debut The New Classic.
Music legend Diana Ross was on hand to pay tribute to “the beautiful and talented” Taylor Swift, who she branded “a true superstar” as she presented the 24-year-old with the inaugural Dick Clark Award for Excellence, an accolade named after beloved late TV and radio host Dick Clark.
Paying back the compliments in her acceptance speech, Swift said, “I’m so blown away to have just received an award from Diana Ross who, just over the course of her career, stood up for herself in a time when it was not popular for a woman to stand up for herself. I’m so honored. Thank you for coming, you’re beautiful.
“Dick Clark was a visionary… I’m so unbelievably ecstatic that his family chose to honor me and that the AMAs chose to honor me with this.”
Swift also gave the proverbial side-eye to music-streaming service Spotify as she recently removed all of her songs from the service, telling her fans, “Lastly you, you guys. To the fans who went out and bought over a million copies of my last three albums, what you did by going out and investing in music and albums, is you are saying you believe in the same thing that I believe in, that music is valuable, and that music should be consumed in albums and that albums should be consumed as art and appreciated, and I appreciate you so much.”
Swift kicked off the ceremony with the first live performance of her new song “Blank Space”, but the show was all about collaborations between the likes of Sam Smith and A$AP Rocky, Magic! and Wyclef Jean, Lil Wayne and his rumored girlfriend Christina Milian, event host Pitbull and Ne-Yo, “Bang Bang” stars Nicki Minaj, Ariana Grande and Jessie J, and Jennifer Lopez and Iggy Azalea, who closed out the big show with a sexy rendition of “Booty”.
Other performance highlights at the Nokia Theatre L.A. Live came from One Direction, New Artist of the Year winners 5 Seconds of Summer, Lorde, Fergie and Selena Gomez, who poured out her emotions in “The Heart Wants What It Wants”, about her on/off relationship with Justin Bieber.
The ceremony was hosted by rapper Pitbull for the second consecutive year.
The full list of winners at the 2014 American Music Awards is:
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Artist of the Year: One Direction
New Artist of the Year: 5 Seconds of Summer
Single of the Year: Katy Perry, Dark Horse
Favorite Male Artist – Pop/Rock: Sam Smith
Favorite Female Artist – Pop/Rock: Katy Perry
Favorite Band, Duo Or Group – Pop/Rock: One Direction
Favorite Pop/Rock Album: One Direction, Midnight Memories
Favorite Male Artist – Country: Luke Bryan
Favorite Female Artist – Country: Carrie Underwood
Favorite Band, Duo Or Group – Country: Florida Georgia Line
Favorite Country Album: Brantley Gilbert, Just As I Am
Favorite Rap/Hip-Hop Artist: Iggy Azalea
Favorite Album – Rap/Hip-Hop: Iggy Azalea, The New Classic
Favorite Male Artist – Soul/R&B: John Legend
Favorite Female Artist – Soul/R&B: Beyonce
Favorite Soul/R&B Album: Beyonce, Beyonce
Favorite Alternative Artist: Imagine Dragons
Favorite Latin Artist: Enrique Iglesias
Favorite Adult Contemporary Artist: Katy Perry
Favorite Contemporary Inspirational Artist: Casting Crowns
Favorite Electronic Dance Music Artist: Calvin Harris
Top Soundtrack: Frozen.