Tonight at the 2023 MTV Video Music Awards, Sean “Diddy” Combs was honored with the annual Global Icon Award. The legendary rapper also took the stage at Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey for a live performance blending songs like “I’ll Be Missing You,” “It’s All About the Benjamins,” “Last Night,” “Mo’ Money Mo’ Problems,” and “Bad Boys For Life.” He also performed an untitled song he first premiered last year in a Beats by Dre ad. Watch it happen below.
After thanking his Bad Boy Records “family,” Diddy shared in his acceptance speech: “I thought I would be playing for the Pittsburgh Steelers, but God made another choice, and thank God for making this choice: for me to be able to touch you with my music, to make you feel good. That’s my only intention.”
Diddy has won two VMAs, picking up Best R&B Video for the Biggie Smalls tribute “I’ll Be Missing You” in 1997. His video for “It’s All About the Benjamins” won the Viewer’s Choice trophy the following year. Mary J. Blige presented Diddy with the award, highlighting not only his career and many memorable collaborations, but their three decade friendship. During his performance, he was joined onstage by his son King Combs, Yung Miami, and Keyshia Cole.
The mogul’s latest honor comes just a few days after he announced that he was returning publishing rights to artists who had been signed to his Bad Boy Records. Those include Faith Evans, the estate of Biggie Smalls, and Mase, who had criticized his former colleague at multiple points in recent years for withholding those rights.
Diddy’s next LP, The Love Album: Off the Grid, is out this Friday, September 15. It features guest appearances from Busta Rhymes, Dawn Richard, Justin Bieber, Burna Boy, and several more.
Follow along with all of Pitchfork’s coverage of the 2023 VMAs.
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