Billie Eilish, Apple’s Global Artist of the Year, took the top honors at the first-ever Apple Music Awards. Apple is celebrating artists from around the world with a live-streamed performance at the Steve Jobs Theater on December 4th, and we already know three of the winners. According to Apple, the Apple Music Awards “honor achievements in music across five distinct categories and winners are chosen through a process that reflects the service’s editorial perspective, combined with what customers around the world are loving most.”
The winners for Global Artist of the Year, Songwriter of the Year and Breakthrough Artist of the Year were hand-selected by Apple Music’s global editorial team. The awards for Album of the Year and Song of the Year are based on streaming data and reflective of what Apple Music customers have been listening to this year. The Artist of the Year went to Billie Eilish and Breakthrough Artist of the Year went to Lizzo. The award for Song of the Year went to “Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X.
“The Apple Music Awards are designed to recognize the passion, energy and creativity of the world’s favorite artists,” said Oliver Schusser, Apple’s vice president of Apple Music and International Content. “The musically diverse group of inaugural winners have sparked deep social conversation, influenced culture and inspired our customers around the world. We couldn’t be more excited to celebrate them.”
The awards handed out this year include Apple’s custom silicon wafer, suspended between a polished sheet of glass and a machined and anodized aluminum body. The wafers start as a perfect 12-inch disc of silicon, and you can see the awards above. Copper layers are deposited and patterned by ultraviolet lithography to create connections between billions of transistors. Apple’s description reads, “The result of this multi-month process, before it is sliced into hundreds of individual chips, is stunning and distinctive. In a symbolic gesture, the same chips which power the devices that put the world’s music at your fingertips sit at the very heart of the Apple Music Awards.”
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