Singer Rihanna will receive the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award this year, often thought of as the biggest prize at the MTV Video Music Awards.
Rihanna released the album “Anti” earlier this year, the source of hit singles including “Needed Me” and “Work.” “Needed” is currently ranked at number eight on the Billboard Hot 100 and her collaboration with Calvin Harris, “This Is What You Came For,” is currently ranked at number three.
Her previous albums include “Unapologetic” and “Loud.”
The Video Vanguard Award was first given out in 1984, with multiple recipients – Richard Lester, director of the film “A Hard Day’s Night”; The Beatles; and David Bowie – being honored at that time. Mr. Jackson himself received the award in 1988, as have, more recently, Justin Timberlake, Beyonce, and Kanye West.
Rihanna is also nominated for other awards at the VMAs that night, including best female video for her song “Work.”
The MTV VMAs will be held on Aug. 28.
When her song “Work” became ranked in the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100 at the beginning of this year, Rihanna took her place alongside Elton John, Janet Jackson, and Mariah Carey in a four-way tie as the artists who have released the fifth-most top 10s on the Hot 100 in the history of the chart, according to Billboard.
And in 2013, the singer received the Icon Award at the American Music Awards, the first-ever recipient of the prize. At the VMAs, Rihanna has received the video of the year prize twice before, once for the 2007 song “Umbrella” and for the 2012 track “We Found Love.”
When announcing Rihanna as the recipient of this year’s Video Vanguard Award, MTV said in a statement, “Rihanna's unparalleled output of hits have spawned some of today's most memorable music videos, from 'Umbrella' to 'We Found Love,' 'Diamonds' and her most recent collaboration with Drake on 'Work.’”