CELEBRATIONS

BET Awards Honor Jackson’s Life

Talk about a quick transformation: Sunday night’s BET Awards went from a traditional ceremony to an all-star tribute to the life of Michael Jackson in less than a day, as a lineup of luminaries paid their respects to the late pop icon. On an extra-long red carpet, swarmed with fans and media, Chaka Khan choked up when she talked about Jackson, and Sean “Diddy” Combs said the King of Pop “made me believe in magic.” A surprise guest was Jackson family patriarch Joe Jackson, who accepted condolences. Performances by Beyonce, Ne-Yo and others were changed to feature musical tributes to Jackson—including a medley of Jackson 5 hits performed by a reunited New Edition, again featuring troubled singer Bobby Brown. “Overnight, literally, it changed,” the show’s producer Ron Weisner, told Billboard. “The show was completely rewritten... We’re trying to address a very unfortunate situation.”