The American Music Awards took place last night and featured some great performances by music A-listers. Here are a few of the performances in no particular order.

Kanye West performed “Heartless” . I love the stage set and Kanye brought a lot of intensity and emotion to his performance. I know a lot of people aren’t feeling the auto-tuner, but the effect was slightly subtle and didn’t drown out Kanye’s distinct delivery. Good performance by Mr. West.

Beyonce performed “Single Ladies”. This is pretty much the same performance from Saturday Night Live, but she did a great job. Her outfit was cute and she was working the hell out of that ponytail. I can’t wait to see what she does for the other songs on her album. She was filming a video for “Diva” this weekend so it’s only a matter of time before she starts performing it live.

Rihanna performed “Rehab” and she did an excellent job. I’ve been saying for 8 months now that this chick has more talent than she is given credit for and she showed a glimpse into how much she has grown vocally in her performance. I’m sure there will still be people who will shrug and say she is wack, but you can’t deny that she hit and held some impressive notes. I loved her performance and she looked stunning as usual.

Alicia Keys performed “Superwoman” and brought out Queen Latifah and Katherine Battle. Alicia sounded great, Queen was tight but the AMA needed to get their sh!t together messing up her mic, and Katherine’s voice was beautiful. One thing that totally sucked about the AMAs is their videography. Apparently they lost sight of the fact that there are millions of people watching at home, so they cut off stage production elements that were intended to enhance the performances. This performance exemplified that when they didn’t have any clear shots with the photo montage in the background. You could that they were showing pictures of people but they were cut off 85% of the time. But anyway, the montage was a nice gesture from the always gracious Alicia Keys. It was a great way to close out the show with an uplifting performance and a (cut off) shot of our next First Lady.

Ne-Yo performed “Closer” and “Miss Independent”. Ne-Yo looked quite dapper and I loved the classic and elegant throwback production. I think he forgot background singers though which would’ve made performance more seamless. Overall though, solid, lively, good performance.

Mariah Carey performed her new single “I Stay In Love”. It seems like she is just on cruise control these days..not really tripping or putting much effort forth, but there were some shining moments in this performance towards the end. It would be nice to see that same hunger that she had with the Emancipation of Mimi album in her again, but this was a solid if not stellar performance. Oh yeah and I don’t know if Nick helping her down the stairs made him seem like a dotting husband or a servant, but that was quite nice of him.