Janet Jackson made a surprise appearance at the Billboard Music Awards 2022 Sunday night (May 15) to present the Icon Award to her friend Mary J. Blige.
She received a standing ovation while introducing Mary, referencing many of her biggest hits, including “Just Fine” and “No More Drama,” during her speech.
“Her work has always given us comfort because she sings me, she sings you. I reminisce, but I’m not going to cry because even though sometimes it feels like everyday it rains, I’ve got no more drama,” said Janet Jackson. “I’m just fine with my life, my life, my life, my life in the sunshine.”
The pair then embraced as Mary J. Blige took to the stage to deliver an emotional acceptance speech, holding back tears as she spoke.
“It takes a lot of time, hard work and a lot of surviving trials. What an icon means to be is to overcome obstacles…and be admired,” Mary said as she accepted the award. “I been on this journey for a long time and I didn’t always look the way that you see me now. With a lot of heartache and pain,” she added.
She thanked her family and friends before honoring her fans. “I’m so grateful to have you,” she concluded.
Janet Jackson Presents The Icon Award
The pair performed together during the “Rhythm Nation” singer’s Las Vegas residency in 2019. Mary shared a photo of them after the show. “About Saturday night……One of the best nights hanging out with my sis, The Queen @janetjackson in Vegas! I had so much fun!! I was so happy to thank you for being so fly and a huge inspiration to me all of these years. Love you ♥.”
Janet Jackson also shared the same shot. “My sister Mary,” she wrote in the caption. “Nothing like some good girl talk. Thank u for coming by to see me. Had so much fun with u. 💜.”
The Billboard Icon Award has only been presented 11 times in the show’s history. Janet Jackson took home the award herself in 2018.