Rap legends Salt-N-Pepa to perform with En Vogue at 2018 Billboard Music Awards
The event will also be privy to pop icon Janet Jackson's first performance on television in nine years.
Dick Clark Productions and NBC announced on Thursday (May 10) that the legendary female rap trio Salt-N-Pepa will take the stage to perform several of their monster hits at the 2018 Billboard Music Awards.
Joining them for this one-of-a-kind special performance will be the highly celebrated female vocal group En Vogue. Salt-N-Pepa’s 2018 Billboard Music Awards performance marks the 30th anniversary of them becoming the first female rappers to crack the Top 20 on Billboard Hot 100.
The renowned group burst onto the hip-hop scene in 1987 with their debut Billboard chart hit 'My Mike Sounds Nice,' and then notched their first crossover pop smash hit with 'Push It' the following year.
“Thirty years later, we’re still Pushing It all over the world and we’re still loved and celebrated by fans we grew up with as well as new fans,” said Salt-N-Pepa.
“Looking back at all the barriers we’ve broken as women in this very male dominated genre of music, being the first two female rappers to break the Top 20 on the Billboard Hot 100 is right up there as one of the best moments of our amazing career. We are blessed.”
Salt-N-Pepa comprises the trio of Cheryl (Salt) James, Sandra (Pepa) Denton and DJ Spinderella (Deidra Roper), who exploded into the pop mainstream in the 1990s. The Grammy-winning act landed a string of Top 40-charting hits on the Hot 100 that decade with songs like 'Let’s Talk About Sex,' 'Do You Want Me,' 'None of Your Business,' 'Expression,' 'Shoop' and 'Whatta Man,' featuring En Vogue.
The latter three cuts also reached No. 1 on the Hot Rap Songs chart – and in 2014, Billboard ranked 'Expression' as the No. 5 biggest Hot Rap Songs hit ever.
The group jumped back onto the charts in 2016 after 'Shoop' was used in the rated-R superhero hit film Deadpool. Following the movie’s premiere, the song reached the Top 20 on both the R&B/Hip-Hop Digital Song Sales and Rap Digital Song Sales charts.
En Vogue stormed Billboard’s charts in 1990 and 1991 as the act become the first — and still so-far only — female group to send its first three singles to No. 1 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart ('Hold On,' 'Lies' and 'You Don’t Have to Worry'). In the 90's, En Vogue earned six No. 1s on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart — the most chart-toppers of any all-female group that decade.
In 2017, Billboard ranked the act as one of the top 10 girl groups of all time. This year, En Vogue returned to the charts with their first studio album in 14 years, “Electric Café.” The album hit the Top 20 of the Independent Albums chart and the set’s lead single, 'Rocket,' shot to the Top 10 of the Adult R&B Songs airplay chart.
Salt-N-Pepa with En Vogue, will join previously announced performers BTS, Camila Cabello, Kelly Clarkson, Ariana Grande, John Legend, Dua Lipa, Jennifer Lopez, Shawn Mendes and Christina Aguilera featuring Demi Lovato, on a night filled with music’s biggest names.
It was also announced earlier this week that global superstar Janet Jackson will receive this year’s ICON Award and will take the stage for a highly anticipated performance of her greatest hits, marking her first performance on television in nine years.
Hosted by 'The Voice' coach Kelly Clarkson, the 2018 Billboard Music Awards will broadcast live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Sunday, May 20 at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT on NBC. The three-hour telecast will feature performances from this year’s hottest musical acts, unexpected collaborations and buzzworthy moments that celebrate 60 years of the Billboard Hot 100.