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ema winners in retrospect: best female

September 28, 2016
Back in 1997, at Rotterdam's first EMAs, the lineup of nominees in the Best Female category was so legendary that it's nearly impossible to guess who ended up winning. The contenders were Bjork, Toni Braxton, Sheryl Crow, Janet Jackson and Madonna. Turns out Jackson came out on top and it's hardly surprising when you look back at the year she had in 1997.

It was the year Jackson's sixth album, The Velvet Rope, came out and sold over ten million copies. It was a killer album featuring moving songs like, "Together Again," "I Get Lonely" and "Go Deep." The Velvet Rope had people all over the world obsessing over her and established her as a total icon.

Meanwhile, Toni Braxton had people in pretty much every country belting out her hit song, "Unbreak My Heart," but in the end her heartbreak anthem just couldn't compete with Jackson's insanely successful album. And chill out Madonna stans she wasn't robbed—she's been nominated for Best Female eight times and eventually won it twice—'97 just wasn't her year. As for, beautiful weirdo, Bjork, she had already won Best Female back in '95.

There's no doubt that the 1997 award for Best Female went to the year's best female.