R&B legend Anita Baker was hailed as the Lifetime Achievement Award winner at the 2018 BET Awards on Sunday, June 24. Following an introduction from Tyler Perry, the Quiet Storm icon was honored with a set of tribute performances, opening with host of the evening, Jamie Foxx.
Before introducing the trio of powerhouse female vocalists that would later pay tribute to Baker, Foxx brought the crowd back to 2003 to perform “Slow Jamz.” Then, he ripped through into a medley of Baker’s enduring classics like “Same Ol Love,” “Angel,” and “Giving You The Best That I Got.”
Marsha Ambrosius had Baker teary eyed as she sang “Caught Up In The Rapture” while Ledisi belted out “Sweet Love.”
The highlight of the tribute, however, was Yolanda Adam’s stunning vocals permeating the Microsoft Theater for “You Bring Me Joy,” bringing Baker to tears and leaving everyone cheering her on. Although she wasn’t able to perform, Anita Baker had some encouraging words for all of the artists of different generations in the building.
“I would ask that the singers who are veterans here, when you see the young ones, tap them on the shoulder. They need you,” she said. “Young ones, look around the room and find a veteran and tap them on the shoulder and introduce yourself. Let’s take care of each other. We need each other. We can’t do it alone.”
(Top photo by Leon Bennett/Getty Images)