All three Fil-Am queens took home major awards at the Billboard Women in Music Awards including Woman of the Year for Olivia Rodrigo.
There’s something so satisfying about seeing Filipinas win in life. Take for example the continued domination of Olivia Rodrigo, H.E.R., and Saweetie in the music industry. In the last year, these Filipino American musicians achieved many feats and broke multiple records. And just recently, their achievements and breakthroughs were recognized during Billboard’s annual Women in Music Awards.
“From legendary acts to those just beginning to make a name for themselves, these are all women pushing the envelope and inspiring fans around the world with their musicality, determination, attitude and style,” said Hannah Karp, Billboard’s editorial director on the event. And true enough, many women making moves in the industry, including Olivia, H.E.R., and Saweetie, were awarded significant accolades.
OLIVIA RODRIGO TAKES HOME WOMAN OF THE YEAR
It’s clear that Olivia Rodrigo’s 2021 was a breakthrough year that launched her into superstardom. And as a cherry on top, Olivia was named Billboard’s Woman of the Year. “Olivia’s trajectory to superstardom is the stuff of pop music legend. Her talents as a storyteller and songwriter have made Olivia one of the most authentic and exciting new artists to explode onto the scene in years. Connecting with audiences across generations through emotionally charged songs about heartbreak, jealousy and growing up, she’s achieved absolutely incredible chart success for a debut artist,” said Billboard in a statement.
Past honorees of Billboard’s Woman of the Year include superstars like Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande, and Lady Gaga. At just 19 years old, Olivia makes history as one of the youngest recipients ever. She is also the first woman of Asian descent to be bestowed the prestigious title. During the show, she performed her hit song Déjà Vu in an empty SoFi stadium in a pre-recorded clip. In line with the women-centric theme, she wore a pink dress and had a four-piece, all-female band wearing all white back her up.
During her acceptance speech, she dedicated part of it to all the young girls and dreamers out there. “To all the young girls out there who are writing songs every day in their journals, on their bedroom floors, I am constantly moved by your vulnerability and your creativity and bravery. And I promise everyone here today is working to make this world and this industry a better place for you.”
H.E.R. GETS RECOGNIZED FOR HER IMPACT
H.E.R. has had critical acclaim follow her ever since she began making music. But aside from that, H.E.R. has also used her platform and music to spotlight and talk about important topics and injustices in the world. Because of this and more, Billboard awarded her the Impact Award.
During the show, she took to the stage at the YouTube Theater at Hollywood Park in Inglewood, California to perform an acoustic and vocally exquisite take of her track Fate. In her acceptance speech, she thanked a woman who has undoubtedly shaped her into the woman that she is, her Filipina mom. “I want to thank my mom for teaching me to stay humble, be grounded, and be hardworking.” She added that because of what her mom has done for her, she is now able to use her platform to give other young women a voice.
SAWEETIE IS HELPING CHANGE THE GAME
From Best Friend to My Type and more, Saweetie has been delivering hits for the past few years. And every time she does so, it’s through her signature icy style. She isn’t afraid to reference her black and Filipino roots whether it be through her music or fashion. Saweetie is a female rapper who has been shaking the industry with her moves so Billboard awarded her with the Game Changer Award.
Saweetie became just the second person ever to be given the award, the first being Nicki Minaj. So clearly, Saweetie is in great company. She performed Closer during the show and dedicated her acceptance speech to the game changers. She also shared that even though being in the industry is not easy, at the end of the day, she would rather “be changing the weather than report it.”. The event was also an opportunity for many to recognize how beautiful Saweetie’s Pinay mom is.
Other honorees of the night include Phoebe Bridgers who took home Trailblazer Award, Doja Cat who was awarded the Powerhouse Award, and Summer Walker who received the Chartbreaker Award. Congratulations to all the women. Up next, keep an eye out for these three queens in the upcoming GRAMMYs on April 3. All three of them are nominated for big awards.