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Last Updated: Wednesday, 7 December 2005, 09:27 GMT
Rap and rock top Billboard Awards
50 Cent
Rapper 50 Cent was in Paris and unable to attend the ceremony
Rapper 50 Cent and rock band Green Day have triumphed at the US Billboard Awards, winning six trophies each.

50 Cent, who led the shortlist with eight nominations, was named artist of the year and took the album of the year - but did not attend the ceremony.

Green Day earned the title of rock artist of the year and best pop group, and saw their track Boulevard of Broken Dreams named rock song of the year.

The ceremony, held in Las Vegas, was hosted by rapper LL Cool J.

Mike Dirnt, Billie Joe Armstrong and Tre Cool of Green Day
Green Day opened the show with a performance of Holiday

The Billboard Awards comprise 21 diverse categories, including country, rock and ringtone of the year.

R Kelly, Gwen Stefani and Pharrell Williams were among the performers at the annual US ceremony, which recognises the year's leading artists and songs as determined by performance on Billboard's weekly charts.

Mariah Carey, who was nominated in seven categories, capped her 2005 comeback year with five awards, among them best female R&B/Hip-Hop artist of the year.

American Idol star Carrie Underwood and Shakira each took three awards, while No Doubt singer Gwen Stefani won the new artist of the year award for her inaugural solo work.

The Artist Achievement Award was handed to rapper and producer Kanye West, to honour his US chart success and artistic achievement.

Tom Petty
Legendary rocker Tom Petty's hits include I Won't Back Down

"When I first came out I was a hot head, I thought I was the greatest," said West at the ceremony. "I still think I'm the greatest."

But the highest honour was reserved for Tom Petty who was awarded the Century Award, recognising the creative achievement in his 30-year body of work.

"I love music, I love rock and roll, therefore I love Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers," said Green Day star Billie Joe Armstrong, presenting the award. "Thank God for Tom Petty."

"We haven't always been boy scouts, but we never lost sight of the music," said Petty on receiving his award.

"Let me remind you that this ain't the end. I can still kick some ass."

50 Cent leads Billboard shortlist
30 Nov 05 |  Entertainment
Lone music award for singer Carey
23 Nov 05 |  Entertainment

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