Missy Elliott and 50 Cent helped lead a lengthy and heartfelt tribute to music-industry icon Chris Lighty last night at the BET Awards, with help from Fat Joe, Busta Rhymes, Funkmaster Flex, and Q-Tip and Phife Dawg from A Tribe Called Quest. Lighty, an influential executive and manager, died on August 30th. Other performers at the awards included Rick Ross, Kendrick Lamar, T.I., Diddy, Wiz Khalifa, 2 Chainz, French Montana, and more.
Winners were pretty well dispersed, with Kanye West taking seven awards, including Producer of the Year and Best Group for the Throne, his collaboration with Jay-Z. Rookie of the Year went to 2Chainz, while Meek Mill walked away with Mixtape of the Year for Dreamchasers 2, DJ Khaled won DJ of the Year, and Kendrick Lamar was named Lyricist of the Year. The night's biggest winner was the larger than life Rick Ross, who took home MVP of the Year.
The BET Cyphers have also become a much-hyped tradition, and this year's West Coast Cypher topped them all. Kendrick Lamar and YG stepped in with West Coast legends Xzbit, Kurupt, E-40, DJ Quik and Snoop Dogg for a series of relentless verses.