Los Angeles - Remy Ma has ended rival Nicki Minaj's seven-year winning streak at the 2017 BET Awards, a show highlighted by '90s R&B and groups popular in that decade.
Ma, who returned from jail in 2014, won best female hip hop artist Sunday in Los Angeles, an award Minaj has won since 2010.
"I wanna thank God first and foremost," said Ma, who also won the honour in 2005. "You can make mistakes and come back."
In March, Ma released the hostile diss track Shether, which earned praised from critics and rap fans. Minaj never officially responded to the song.
At the live show at the Microsoft Theatre, '90s R&B favourites New Edition and Xscape shined onstage.
New Edition, whose three-part biopic was a white-hot rating success for BET earlier this year, earned the lifetime achievement award and received a lengthy tribute. It started with the child actors from the movie singing Candy Girl, later followed by the older actors for some of the band's hits apart from the group, including BBD's Poison and Ralph Tresvant's Sensitivity.
The real group then hit the stage to sing Can You Stand the Rain and Mr. Telephone Man. The actors later joined New Edition for If It Isn't Love.
Girl group Xscape, who is set to launch a reality show, reunited at the BET Awards and sang the popular hits Just Kickin' It, Understanding and Who Can I Run To? The crowd was in awe, singing along and filming the performance with their phones.
Bruno Mars, whose new album was heavily inspired by '90s R&B, also shined on Sunday. He won best male R&B/pop artist and kicked off the show with a fun and funky performance of the song, Perm.
"To the fans, you know I love you. My first BET Award," he screamed.
Kendrick Lamar, who surprised the audience when he performed with Future, won best male hip hop artist. He gave a shout-out to fellow nominee Chance the Rapper, who earned the humanitarian award at the age of 24 and also won best new artist.
In a taped message, Michelle Obama honoured Chance, who has raised $2m dollars for Chicago public school. The former First Lady said she and Barack Obama knew Chance "since he was a baby rapper."
"Chance is showing our young people that they matter," she said. "Because of you, countless young people will grow up believing in themselves."
Watch it here:
Beyoncé, who reportedly had her twins earlier this month though she hasn't commented on the topic, was the top nominee with seven. When it was announced that she won the viewer's choice award, Chloe x Halle — the young duo signed to Beyoncé — recited a speech given to them from the pop star.
Solange, Beyoncé's younger sister, had a big night: She won the Centric award and called Sunday "the best birthday ever" (she turned 31 on Saturday).
"My arm pits are sweating so much right now," said Solange, who also thanked BET for showing her "queens" like Aaliyah, Missy Elliott, Erykah Badu and others during her teenage years.
Solange held a moment of silence onstage later on, and the show also honoured some of the minorities who died at the hands of police officers, including Trayvon Martin, Philando Castile, Eric Garner and others.
Other winners include Migos, who took home best group. The hip-hop trio also won over the audience with its performances of the hits Bad and Boujee, T-Shirt and Congratulations, with Post Malone. Chance the Rapper, and his mom, danced during the long set; as did Queen Latifah, Cardi B., Stranger Things actor Caleb McLaughlin and black-ish actress Yara Shahidi, who won the YoungStars award.
Others shined onstage too with slower songs: Tamar Braxton and Maxwell gave vocally impressive performances, and Mary J. Blige sang songs from Strength of a Woman, her recent album that includes emotional tunes about her divorce.
"Mary J. got that break up body. Whoa," screamed Jamie Foxx, who presented an award after Blige's performance.
Leslie Jones of Saturday Night Live hosted the four-hour show.
Here's the full list of winners:
— Video of the year: Bruno Mars, "24K Magic"; Beyoncé, "Sorry"
— Best male R&B/pop artist: Bruno Mars
— Best female R&B/pop Artist: Beyoncé
— Best male hip hop artist: Kendrick Lamar
— Best female hip hop artist: Remy Ma
— Best new artist: Chance the Rapper
— Album of the year: Beyoncé, "Lemonade"
— Best group: Migos
— Best gospel/inspirational award: Lecrae
— Best collaboration: Chance the Rapper featuring Lil Wayne and 2 Chainz, "No Problem"; Migos featuring Lil Uzi Vert, "Bad and Boujee"
— YoungStars award: Yara Shahidi
— Viewers' choice award: Beyoncé, "Sorry"
— Centric award: Solange, "Cranes In the Sky"
— Video director of the year: Beyoncé and Kahlil Joseph, "Sorry"
— Best actor: Mahershala Ali
— Best actress: Taraji P. Henson
— Best movie: "Hidden Figures"
— Sportswoman of the year: Serena Williams
— Sportsman of the year: Stephen Curry
— Humanitarian award: Chance the Rapper
— Lifetime achievement award: New Edition
— Best international act, Europe: Stormzy, England
— Best international act, Africa: Wizkid, Nigeria
The ceremony will air on Tuesday, 27 June on BET (DStv 129) at 20:00.