Usher Receives BET Lifetime Achievement Award Amidst Audio Issues After Spectacular Tribute

On June 30, 2024, the legendary R&B artist

Usher accepts his Lifetime Achievement Award from Babyface and L.A. Reid onstage during the 2024 BET Awards at Peacock Theater on June 30, 2024 in Los Angeles. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, KEVIN WINTER/GETTY)
Usher accepts his Lifetime Achievement Award from Babyface and L.A. Reid onstage during the 2024 BET Awards at Peacock Theater on June 30, 2024 in Los Angeles. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, KEVIN WINTER/GETTY)

Usher received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the BET Awards, joining the ranks of past honorees such as Prince, Whitney Houston, Queen Latifah, and Lionel Richie.

This accolade recognized Usher’s enduring influence and contribution to music over a career spanning more than 30 years.

The night was filled with memorable performances and emotional moments. Childish Gambino, also known as Donald Glover, kicked off the tribute with an acapella rendition of Usher’s 2001 hit “U Don’t Have to Call,” alongside Keke Palmer.

This performance set the stage for a series of tributes that celebrated Usher’s extensive discography.

Keke Palmer continued the tribute with “U Make Me Wanna,” followed by Coco Jones’ rendition of “There Goes My Baby.” Marsha Ambrosius performed “Superstar,” while Chlöe took on “Good Kisser.”

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Embedded YouTube Video

Tinashe brought the crowd to their feet with “Nice & Slow,” and Teyana Taylor, featuring a dance number from Victoria Monét, delivered a powerful performance of “Bad Girl.” Latto closed the medley with an energetic rendition of “Yeah!”

Summer Walker also honored Usher with a performance of their collaboration “Good Good,” featuring 21 Savage.

The song, which had been nominated for Best Collaboration and Best Video at the BET Awards, showcased the continuing relevance and impact of Usher’s music.

Usher’s acceptance speech was a highlight of the evening. Presented by Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds, L.A. Reid, Jimmy Jam, and Terry Lewis, the award was received with Usher’s characteristic humility and humor.

He began his speech by joking about whether it was “too early” for such an honor, stating, “I’m still running and gunning and I still love this s— like I did when I was 8 years old.”

The singer then delved into a personal narrative about his childhood and the absence of his father.

Teyana Taylor and Victoria Monet perform onstage during the 2024 BET Awards. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, KEVIN WINTER/GETTY)
Teyana Taylor and Victoria Monet perform onstage during the 2024 BET Awards. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, KEVIN WINTER/GETTY)

Usher reflected on the complexities of his relationship with his father, saying, “I was trying to make sense of this name that a man gave me that didn’t stick around because he didn’t love — or at least that was my perception of it.”

He continued, “Because I had to live long enough to understand that you have to have a forgiving heart in order to understand the true pitfalls and hardships of a Black man in America.

And my father, he was a product of that. He made a lot of decisions — he made a lot of choices — and the one that probably hurt and helped me at the same time was to stay away.”

Although technical issues interrupted his speech, Usher’s message about fatherhood and forgiveness resonated with the audience. He dedicated the year 2024 to fathers, emphasizing the importance of being present in his children’s lives.

Usher, who is the father of four, spoke movingly about his role as a parent and his dedication to his sons, Cinco and Naviyd, who were in attendance, as well as his younger children, Sire and Sovereign, at home.

“Even though there wasn’t a dad to call, even though there was not anybody to pick up and say you gonna be alright, this is what you do, this is what’s OK, this is what isn’t… It led me to be the father that I am to my boys, Cinco and Naviyd, who are here today,” Usher said.

Usher accepts the Lifetime Achievement Award onstage during the 2024 BET Awards at Peacock Theater on June 30, 2024 in Los Angeles. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, KEVIN WINTER/GETTY)
Usher accepts the Lifetime Achievement Award onstage during the 2024 BET Awards at Peacock Theater on June 30, 2024 in Los Angeles. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, KEVIN WINTER/GETTY)

He concluded with an inspirational message about commitment and passion, “It’s 100% all about my children and making certain you understand that your dreams can come true if you’re truly committed.”

Usher’s acceptance speech, despite the audio issues, was a powerful testament to his resilience and dedication to his craft and family.

He expressed gratitude to his team and collaborators who have supported him throughout his career, including Babyface, Reid, and others.

BET’s Lifetime Achievement Award is designed to honor “special achievements and distinguished public service,” celebrating industry trailblazers who have significantly impacted culture and the entertainment industry.

Connie Orlando, BET EVP of Specials, Music Programming & Music Strategy, highlighted Usher’s influence, stating, “From his chart-topping hits, electrifying performances and unforgettable vocals to his signature moves and sound, Usher continues to stand on culture, setting new standards for the music industry and Black excellence.”

In addition to the Lifetime Achievement Award, Usher was nominated for four BET Awards this year, including Album of the Year for his latest studio release, “Coming Home.”

He won the award for Best Male R&B/Pop Artist, further cementing his status as a leading figure in the music industry.

Usher at the BET Awards at Peacock Theater on June 30, 2024 in Los Angeles. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, MICHAEL BUCKNER/VARIETY VIA GETTY)
Usher at the BET Awards at Peacock Theater on June 30, 2024 in Los Angeles. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, MICHAEL BUCKNER/VARIETY VIA GETTY)

Usher’s achievements in 2024 have been remarkable. Earlier in the year, he headlined a record-breaking Super Bowl halftime show and released his ninth studio album.

He also celebrated the 20th anniversary of his diamond-certified album “Confessions” and announced his upcoming “Past Present Future” tour. These accomplishments followed his highly successful Las Vegas residency, which concluded in December.

The 2024 BET Awards, broadcast live from the Peacock Theatre in Los Angeles, celebrated Usher’s enduring legacy and ongoing contributions to music.

The event was a fitting tribute to an artist who has shaped the sound of contemporary R&B and continues to inspire future generations.

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