Last year it was Justin Bieber, but at Sunday night's American Music Awards at Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles, it was a different Justin dominating the show. Justin Timberlake was named favorite male artist for both the pop/rock and soul/R&B categories. He also won Favorite Soul/R&B Album for “The 20/20 Experience.”

Taylor Swift was also a big winner of the night, taking home four awards, including Artist of the Year.

Swift, who showed a lot of leg on the red carpet in a short gold dress, expressed disbelief that this is her third year winning the top honor. Winners are chosen by fans.


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“It's kind of a little bit mind-numbingly unbelievable,” Swift said. “It's a little hard to absorb it all at once. This year has been unreal for me.”

Timberlake delivered a soulful performance of “Drink You Away,” and gave humorous acceptance speeches. On one trip to the stage, after comedian Sarah Silverman called him a “white guy from 'The Mickey Mouse Club,'” the singer/actor quipped that it was “the first time I've been racially profiled by a white woman.”

Much-nominated hip-hop duo Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, were unable to attend the show. They appeared in a video from Miami as they accepted the award for Favorite Rap/Hip Hop album for “The Heist.” Macklemore, born Ben Haggerty, used the moment to comment on the death of and offer tribute to Trayvon Martin. The duo later performed their song “Can't Hold Us” live from their concert in Florida.

Lady Gaga, who showed up on the red carpet riding a white horse powered by two people inside, also sent a message to the world with her performance of “Do What U Want.” Gaga, joined by R&B singer R Kelly, acted out an affair between a woman and the president. Filled with sexual innuendoes, the singer ended the performance on top of a piano as a video of her younger self played on the screen. Newspaper articles with headlines that read “Lady Gaga is Fat,” scrolled alongside the video as she sang the lyrics: “You can't stop my voice cause you don't own my life but do what you want with my body.”

Miley Cyrus was another highly anticipated performer, but the 21-year-old left the twerking to the show's host Pitbull, who essentially lead a tutorial early in the show. Instead, Cyrus' performance of “Wrecking Ball” was surprisingly simple and humorous with a kitten singing on a screen behind her.

Jennifer Lopez had people gasping during her tribute to Latin legend Celia Cruz as she sang in Spanish and proved age is no factor in an energetic performance that included salsa and a front flip that narrowly avoided disaster.

One Direction performed its hit “Story of my Life,” but more importantly, they also took home their first AMA for Favorite Pop/Rock album, which was later followed with a win for Favorite Pop/Rock Band, Duo or Group.

“We know this is fan-voted, we absolutely love our fans, you are absolutely incredible,” they said in their acceptance speech.

Their fans certainly are devoted. When the boy band arrived at the venue earlier in the evening, fans across the street ripped down portions of a fence that was blocking their view, allowing them to get a glimpse of the band before they hit the red carpet, including the sight of Niall Horan getting a last-minute lint roller run over his suit.

Also a first of the night was Ariana Grande's win for Best New Artist.

The surviving members of TLC, Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins and Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas, reunited onstage for the first time in years with a performance of “Waterfalls,” joined by rapper Lil Mama. After it was announced the duo would be performing with a guest artist, there were rumors they would be using a hologram of Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes who died in a car accident in 2002. But it turned out to be Lil Mama.

“TMZ started that rumor — they don't always tell the truth,” Chilli said backstage.