Billboard Music Awards 2020: Country superstar Garth Brooks receives Icon Award

Garth Brooks accepted his Icon Award at the 2020 Billboard Music Awards the best way he knows how — by playing the hits. 

Brooks delivered a rolling medley of his biggest contributions to country music, starting with “The Thunder Rolls” and ending with “The Dance.”

Conducted by Brooks, the hits train bowled through stops at “Callin’ Baton Rouge,” “The River,” “Standing Outside The Fire,” “Friends In Low Places” and 2019 Blake Shelton collaboration “Dive Bar.” 

He closed the five-minute run with a speech thanking longtime manager Bob Doyle, his wife and fellow country star Trisha Yearwood, his three daughters and country radio. 

“To all those people that fill those stands, thank you,” Brooks said, tipping his black cowboy hat. “Thank you for my life.” 

Garth Brooks received the Icon Award at the Billboard Music Awards Wednesday, and performed a medley of his hits.

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Cher, who received the award in 2017, introduced the 58-year-old Oklahoma native at the live but audience-free ceremony at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. 

Brooks, a touring titan and one of the best-selling artists in popular music history, earns the legacy Billboard honor in the same year that he became the first entertainer to land a song on the publication’s Hot Country Songs chart in five consecutive decades. 

And Brooks’ Billboard dominance expands beyond country charts. Since his first top 10 hit in 1989, “Much Too Young (To Feel This Damn Old),” Brooks has earned nine No. 1 albums on the all-genre Billboard 200 chart. 

Brooks is the first Nashville artist to receive the Icon Award. Previous recipients include Cher, Celine Dion, Neil Diamond, Prince, Jennifer Lopez, Stevie Wonder, Janet Jackson and Mariah Carey.

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