This year’s version of the annual celebration of Black creative excellence included special tributes to comedian Martin Lawrence, late Mobb Deep member Prodigy, prolific music video and film director Hype Williams and other artists across who achieved national stardom in the ’90s.
Like all “Hip Hop Honors” ceremonies, the 2017 event featured tremendous performances from some of the 1990’s most visible rap hitmakers. Here are some of the celebration’s defining sets, speeches and other noteworthy moments:
Missy Elliott opens the show with a performance of her 1999 hit “She’s a Bitch” that channeled the aesthetic of the Hype Williams-directed music video:
Trick Daddy, Trina, Romeo, Silkk The Shocker and Xscape recognize Jermaine Dupri, Master P and the growth of Southern rap with a medley of singles, including “Nann,” “Make Em Say Uhh!” and “Just Kickin’ It”:
Pharrell Williams implores viewers to fight social injustice:
Honoree Hype Williams looks back at his 1990s music video canon with a new video montage:
Watch more clips at VH1.com.