After congratulating Rihanna with a billboard in NYC, ahead of Sunday’s MTV VMAs, Drake took things a step further when he presented her with the Video Vanguard Award.
Before giving her the award, the rapper confessed his love for Riri, offering a speech about her accomplishments.
“She’s someone I’ve been in love with since I was 22 years old,” he said, before embracing Rihanna with a kiss. “She’s one of my best friends in the world. She’s a living breathing legend in our industry.”
Drake also recalled their first meeting — the set of her 2005 video, “Pon de Play”, which was shot at a Toronto diner.
“What’s most impressive isn’t the endlessness of stats, awards and accomplishments — what’s most impressive is the person,” said Drake. “She succeeds by being something in which no one in this industry does which is by being herself — the same girl from Barbados surrounded by the same friends. We love the videos which change their artistic vision from year to year. But most of all we love the woman who hasn’t changed from day one.”
Rihanna would eventually get the mic, and delivered a humble speech.
“When I think about the Video Vanguard Award and receiving this tonight, all I can think of is my country,” the pop star said. “They’re gonna be so proud. This is the first Vanguard to land anywhere close to my country.”
“My success… it started as my dream, and now my success is not my own,” she confessed. “It’s my family’s, it’s my fans’, it’s my country’s, it’s the Caribbean’s as a whole, it’s women’s – I have to thank you guys for supporting me over and over.”