Cardi B kept things real as she kicked off the 2021 American Music Awards Sunday night, getting the crowd whirled up. The “WAP” rapper made her hosting debut, live from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, where she brought down the house with dramatic ensembles and her signature humor.
Grand Opening and Nerves
She stepped out in an elegant black gown with a dramatic feathered headdress and silver diamond jewelry — one of the many looks that she would have throughout the night. Cardi admitted that she was a bit nervous, but was going to make sure everyone had a great time.
“Damn this crowd is loud,” she belted as she welcomed everyone to the 2021 AMAs. “I ain’t gonna lie. I’m a little nervous. I’m sweating.”
She then noted that they would be celebrating everyone’s hometown, including hers; The Bronx.
Cardi B Invites JoJo Siwa to Christmas
Cardi — in a sleek black gown with dramatic silver sleeves — spotted JoJo Siwa during the show and couldn’t help but try and book her for the holidays.
“I see you JoJo Siwa. My husband was trying to get JoJo Siwa for my daughter’s birthday party, but she is booked and busy,” she said, before asking if she could go to her house for Christmas. She also noted how expensive the performer was, jokingly saying, “Y’all rappers ain’t got nothing on JoJo Siwa.”
Siwa later responded to Cardi when going up to present. “Cardi, I’m gonna see what I can do and I’m gonna try and make Christmas happen. I promise, putting it in my phone now. I take Bitcoin,” she joked, adding she “can’t wait to meet Kulture.”
Cardi Stuns in Yellow Gown & Takes Home Favorite Hip-Hop Song
After strutting her stuff in a new look, Cardi won Favorite Hip-Hop song for “Up.”
“Oh my god, I’m so famous! Thank you so much Bardi Gang, thank you to my fans, to my new fans, to the ones that been holding me down all these years, thank you for voting for me,” she expressed. “And thank you, Jesus! Always gotta thank Jesus! But I gotta go host!”
Purple Goddess Introducing Jennifer Lopez
Making another statement in a velvet deep purple gown with feathered sleeves, Cardi introuced her “girl.”
“She’s a big time hustler, she do movie, she dance, she sell perfumes..clothes, everything,” she said of her fellow Bronx babe.
Another Couture Look
No doubt about it, when Cardi said she was bring the fashion, she meant it!
With Cardi’s AMAs hosting debut, she joined a long list of rappers, actresses and global superstar AMA hosts, including Jennifer Lopez, Eddie Murphy, Jimmy Kimmel, Britney Spears, LL Cool J, Aretha Franklin, Diana Ross, Tracee Ellis Ross, Lionel Richie, and last year’s host, Taraji P. Henson.
Before opening the show, she arrived in a statement-making Schiaparelli look.
The 2021 American Music Awards aired live Nov. 21 at 8:00 p.m. ET on ABC and will stream the next day on Hulu.
See the complete list of winners, here.