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R&B crooner John Legend and the infamous Roots Band lead the pack of winners at the 42nd Annual NAACP Image Awards which went down Feb 4th  in Los Angeles, California. They won two awards for their collaborative album WAKE UP!, including “Outstanding Duo, Group or Collaboration” and the other for “Outstanding Album.”

Newcomer Willow Smith took home the “Outstanding New Artist” trophy, beating out artists like B.o.B, Bruno Mars, Jason Derulo and Nicki Minaj. She was also nominated for Outstanding Music Video, which was snagged by Alicia Keys.

Usher, who recently said he would donate all monies earned from an appearance linked to Gadhafi, won Outstanding Male Artist, beating rivals Kanye, Cee-Lo Green, Jay-Z and Ne-Yo. Hip Hop Soul Queen Mary J. Blige won Outstanding Female Artist over Chrisette Michele, Corinne Bailey Rae, Rihanna and Sade, while Fantasia won the award for Best Song.

In related news, the NAACP Image Awards took some heat this year for honoring Jay-Z, Minaj, P. Diddy, Kanye and other artists who often use offensive lyrics and derogatory images.

“It is unconscionable that the NAACP would sully its brand, squander its legacy, and take such a stand contrary to the aspirations and dreams of the mainstream of the African-American community,” said Reverend Delman Coates, senior pastor of the Mt. Ennon Baptist Church.

“While artists are free to produce their own art, it is not acceptable for public corporations and established civil right organizations to sanction the kinds of lyrics promoted by some of these artists,” he continued. “These are the wrong images for a civil rights organization to nominate and endorse.”

In response, the organization promised to review the complaints to see if they are valid. “I think the national office is going to review the policy of the nominees and the participants,” said NACCP President Joe Brown. “Hopefully this will eliminate inviting those whose lyrics are considered disdainful.”

2011 NAACP Image Awards Music Winners List:


  • Outstanding Comedy Series: “Tyler Perry’s House of Payne”
  • Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series: David Mann – “Meet the Browns”
  • Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series: Vanessa Williams – “Desperate Housewives”
  • Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series: Ice Cube – “Are We There Yet?”
  • Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series: Sofia Vergara – “Modern Family”
  • Outstanding Drama Series: “Grey’s Anatomy”
  • Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series: LL Cool J – “NCIS: Los Angeles”
  • Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series: Regina King – “Southland”
  • Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Terrence Howard – “Law & Order: Los Angeles”
  • Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: S. Epatha Merkerson – “Law & Order”
  • Outstanding TV Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic Special: “Sins of the Mother”
  • Outstanding Actor in a TV Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic Special: Idris Elba – “Luther”
  • Outstanding Actress in a TV Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic Special: Jill Scott – “Sins of the Mother”
  • Outstanding Actor in a Daytime Drama Series: Rodney Saulsberry – “The Bold and the Beautiful”
  • Outstanding Actress in a Daytime Drama Series: Tatyana Ali – “The Young and the Restless”
  • Outstanding News/Information (Series or Special): “Unsung”
  • Outstanding Talk Series: “The View”
  • Outstanding Reality Series: “Sunday Best”
  • Outstanding Variety (Series or Special): “UNCF An Evening of Stars Tribute to Lionel Richie”
  • Outstanding Children’s Program: “True Jackson, VP”
  • Outstanding Performance in a Youth/Children’s Program (Series or Special): Keke Palmer – “True Jackson, VP”
  • Outstanding Documentary (Theatrical or Television): “For Love of Liberty: The Story of America’s Black Patriots”
  • Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series: Aaron McGruder – “The Boondocks”
  • Outstanding Writing in a Dramatic Series: Shonda Rhimes – “Private Practice” – (Did You Hear What Happened to Charlotte King?)
  • Outstanding Directing in a Comedy Series: Kevin Rodney Sullivan – “Modern Family” (Game Changer)
  • Outstanding Directing in a Dramatic Series: Millicent Shelton – “Men of a Certain Age” (Go with the Flow)


  • Outstanding Motion Picture: “For Colored Girls”
  • Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture: Denzel Washington – “The Book of Eli”
  • Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture: Halle Berry – “Frankie and Alice”
  • Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture: Samuel L. Jackson – “Mother and Child”
  • Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture: Kimberly Elise – “For Colored Girls”
  • Outstanding Independent Motion Picture: “Frankie and Alice”
  • Outstanding Foreign Motion Picture: “Biutiful”
  • Outstanding Writing in a Motion Picture (Theatrical or Television): Mary King, Anna Waterhouse, Joe Shrapnel, Marko King, Jonathan Watters, Cheryl Edwards – “Frankie and Alice” and Michael Elliot – “Just Wright”
  • Outstanding Directing in a Motion Picture (Theatrical or Television): Tyler Perry – “For Colored Girls”


  • Outstanding New Artist: Willow Smith
  • Outstanding Male Artist: Usher
  • Outstanding Female Artist: Mary J. Blige
  • Outstanding Duo, Group or Collaboration: John Legend and The Roots
  • Outstanding Jazz Album: “From Billie Holiday to Edith Piaf – Live in Marciac” – The Wynton Marsalis Quintet and Richard Galliano
  • Outstanding Gospel Album (Traditional or Contemporary): “You Are Not Alone” – Mavis Staples
  • Outstanding World Music Album: “VOCAbuLarieS” – Bobby McFerrin
  • Outstanding Music Video: “Un-thinkable (I’m Ready)” – Alicia Keys
  • Outstanding Song: “Bittersweet” – Fantasia Barrino
  • Outstanding Album: “Wake Up!” – John Legend and The Roots


  • Outstanding Literary Work – Fiction: Getting to Happy by Terry McMillan
  • Outstanding Literary Work – Non-Fiction: The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander
  • Outstanding Literary Work – Debut Author: The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration by Isabel Wilkerson
  • Outstanding Literary Work – Biography/Auto-Biography: You Don’t Know Me: Reflections of My Father, Ray Charles by Ray Charles Robinson, Jr.
  • Outstanding Literary Work – Instructional: A Boy Should Know How to Tie a Tie: And Other Lessons for Succeeding in Life by Antwone Fisher
  • Outstanding Literary Work – Poetry:  100 Best African-American Poems by Nikki Giovanni
  • Outstanding Literary Work – Children: My Brother Charlie by Holly Robinson Peete, Ryan Elizabeth Peete (Authors), Shane W. Evans (Illustrator)
  • Outstanding Literary Work – Youth/Teens: Condoleezza Rice: A Memoir of My Extraordinary, Ordinary Family and Me by Condoleezza Rice

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