Here’s Everything You Need to Know to Get Ready for Tonight’s 2018 American Music Awards
The big night is finally here! It’s Tuesday, Oct. 9, which means the American Music Awards are tonight at 8 p.m. EST/5 p.m. PST, and they’re going to be awesome. And if you’re thinking that this isn’t the biggest night in musical award shows, well, banish the thought. Because with stars like Taylor Swift, Cardi B, and Panic! at the Disco taking the stage, there’s a little something for everybody — and it’s going to be way more fun than any prestige awards show that may be on your mind.
If you’re as ready for the big night as we are, then you need all the info. You can check out the full list of nominees here (Cardi B and Drake are set to dominate the evening), and we’ve got the deets on where (and how) you can tune in, what performances will be tearing up the stage, and who’s handling hosting duties below. Check it out.
How do I watch or stream the American Music Awards?
The show’s on ABC tonight, Oct. 9, at 8 p.m EST and 5 p.m. PST. It’s being broadcast live, so you won’t want to miss out. Just turn on your TV and flip to ABC — it’s that easy. If you’re away from home, though, there are ways to stream the show, too. The first way is by using the ABC app, which you can get on your phone or a tablet. It’s available for Apple and Android, so you should be covered either way. And if you don’t want to get the app, you can always go to the channel’s website at ABC.com and hit that “Live” button on the menu in the top left of the screen. It’ll prompt you to sign in with your TV provider, and then start the show.
If you don’t have a TV provider, don’t sweat it just yet. You can still stream the show, but you’ll need to get a little trickier. Under the options, there’s another link that says, “Don’t have a TV provider? Get Instant Access.” It’ll take you to a page where you can sign up for a streaming service like Direct Now, Hulu, or YouTube TV. If you don’t have a Hulu account already with Live TV, you can sign up for a free trial — and if you don’t like it, you can just cancel it later.
Who’s hosting the American Music Awards?
Who better to run the show than the fabulous Tracee Ellis Ross? She may be known as an actress and not as a musician, but she’s got strong ties to the biz. Her mom is the musical icon Diana Ross for God’s sake! Not only was she the lead singer of The Supremes, she also had a legendary solo career. “Stop! In The Name of Love,” anybody? “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” ring a bell? How about “I’m Coming Out”? Yeah, that’s what Tracee was raised on.
She’s also the star of Black-ish on ABC, where she kills it with her acting chops and sense of humors. So you know she’s going to have the jokes tonight — and know how to breeze past any awkward moments that might arise. She also hosted the show last year in 2017, so you know she’s tried and true. And she wants to do something a little different this year. She told E News! that she wants to do a dance routine to start the show. “I got myself 20 amazing female dancers,” she said. Do give her a little leeway for the experimental move, though. “You dial up your compassion, you turn down the judgement and you imagine me as your child, your best friend or your auntie and you are rooting for me,” she asks fans.
Who’s performing at the American Music Awards?
Tonight, it’s all about T. Swift. It’s her first time back on an awards show stage in three years, and she’s set to perform her Reputation hit “I Did Something Bad” to open the show. Girl’s always gone above and beyond when it comes to her music videos and stage presence, and after taking a step back for so long, she promises to really bring it this time around. “It’s gonna be pretty incredible,” producer Biz Halpin told ABC News. “I mean, everybody has high expectations from Taylor Swift performances. She always wows and amazes, and I think she’s gonna continue that, from what I’ve seen so far.”
Though Tay may be the first big star of the night, she’s hardly the only highly-anticipated performance. You can also expect a showstopper from Cardi and her crew. “One thing I’m really excited about is that for the first time ever on TV we have Cardi B, J Balvin and Bad Bunny doing ‘I Like It Like That,’ which really was the song of the summer,” executive producer Mark Bracco told ABC News. “And it’s just going to be a huge, big, colorful, loud performance.”
That’s hardly all. Panic! at the Disco is doing a special Queen tribute with “Bohemian Rhapsody” that we can’t wait to see. And Mariah Carey, Camila Cabello, Jennifer Lopez, Carrie Underwood, and Shawn Mendes will also be taking the mic. Oh, yeah, not to mention the fact that Ciara and Missy Elliot will be performing together, giving us extremely real “1, 2 Step” nostalgia feels. Just for the record, the singers also collabed on “Lose Control” and “Work,” so whatever they’ve cooked up for tonight is going to be absolutely epic. We’re setting our DVRs now, because there’s no way we aren’t going to want to relive the glory of it all later.
And the finale is maybe the best part of it all. The show is set to feature a bevy of talented artists honoring the late, great Aretha Frankling, Queen of Soul. “The Aretha Franklin tribute [is] just going to bring the house down,” Mark said, predicting “a lot of tears” and “lots of joy.” To tackle that, Gladys Knight, Ledisi, Mary Mary, Donnie McClurkin, and CeCe Winans are all teaming up, and with all that talent on stage, they’re bound to do Aretha proud. We just can’t wait to see it.