Thanks for reading the first five lessons I learned from the BET Awards! Now for the top 5!
#5: When You Make a Comeback, Come Back Strong—From the opening of the show, Sunday night was undoubtedly the night of comebacks. Kanye made his first appearance since Deboing the mic from Taylor Swift at the MTV Video Awards. T.I. did his first post-prison performance. Usher is STILL trying to come back from the bad publicity he received doing his marriage…and divorce. Keyshia Cole did her first post-baby performance. Chris Brown finally got his name changed from Mr. Slap-a-Chick, and El Debarge climbed out of his hole to promote his new album. It was an awesome night to watch. Everyone sat on the edge of their seats anxiously waiting to be blown away by these comeback kids; however most of them could be described as mediocre at best!
When you make a comeback, you should absolutely, no questions asked, blow your audience out of the water. You should leave no room for naysayers to speak. Your comeback should be so fresh, on-point, and above everything you have ever done that you leave your audience speechless, gasping for air, and wanting more. While most of the comebacks were decent, only Chris Brown left his audience speechless. If I ever have to make a comeback, I want to do like you, Chris!
#4: Classics Never Die—The music industry has been struggling over the last decade not because of its lack of talent, but due the large number of artists who a chasing the quick buck associated with fades instead putting in the work to produce a classic. Sunday night was a night of classics: Deniece Williams, El Debarge, Michael Jackson, and Prince. Decades latter their music still moves crowds like they are on the top of the Billboard 100. I can’t say Gucci’s “Lemonade” will be doing the same.
As someone who has recommitted herself to her writing, I am going to focus on creating classic materials. Whether it’s my blogs, books, short stories, plays, or scripts, I’m not going to thinking about what is popular and what is going to make me a quick dollar. I’m going to focus on creating timeless, master pieces that will be relevant for years on end. I want to be associated with the Maya Angelous and the Zora Neale Hurstons, not the Zanes.
#3: Everyone Respects a Master—If you’re going to be a craftsman, you might as well master that bad boy. Prince and Michael Jackson are two musicians who worked hard and mastered their crafts, and whether you like or even respect them as people, you have no choice but to respect their mastery. I can only imagine what it’s like to walk in a room and have the respect of everyone: fans, peers, enemies, and haters. AMAZING! Good enough should no longer be acceptable. Everything associated with your name should be stamped with excellence…nothing less!
#2: Always Give 100% Effort—BET SUCKS as a network. They put in minimum effort and expect great results. That’s not logical—and it has turned a large number of people off from the network altogether. This is unfortunate…and similar to the boy who cried wolf, because when we you actually put in 100% effort and produce a quality product everyone assumes that your product still sucks and no one wants to give it the time of day.
This year, BET produced a quality award show. It was by far the best awards show in the network’s history. However, a large number of people who would’ve enjoyed this show missed out because they assumed it would suck like the shows of the past. You only have one time to show your audience your best work. Make sure you do that each and every time.
#1: God Redeems You in His Own Time—To say the last year and a half have been rough for Chris Brown would be an understatement. After pleading guilty to assaulting his girlfriend, Rihanna, Chris has watched his life and career crumble in front of him. Even after making numerous attempts to amend his wrong doing, it appeared that Chris had been blackballed from the industry with no chance of regaining his place in the music business. However, God sees all and redeems us of our pain and suffering.
While onstage Sunday night, God redeem Chris Brown of all he has suffered through over the past year and a half. God didn’t even care that the pain and suffering was due to Chris’ own bad actions. When you truly seek His face and forgiveness, He will publicly redeem you in a way that no man can stop. While many may debate what occurred on that stage, I’m confident in what I saw. I saw an individual who was genuinely remorseful for the mistakes he’d made and sincerely grateful to be given a second chance by God and to be accepted by his industry again. No matter what you’ve done, no matter who won’t forgive you, no matter who is keeping you out, stay faithful and prayerful. The God of redemption will redeem you in His own time, and when you, and your haters, least expect it.