The American Music Awards 2018

By Brian Ries, Chloe Melas and Lisa France, CNN

Updated 11:16 p.m. ET, October 9, 2018
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9:15 p.m. ET, October 9, 2018

AMAs briefly get political with a t-shirt and a Beto shoutout

Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images For dcp
Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images For dcp

During his acceptance speech for Soul/R&B Male, Khalid briefly got political -- giving a shout out to Beto O'Rourke, the Democrat who is running to unseat Sen. Ted Cruz in Texas.

"Before I go, shout out to the 915, to El Paso, Texas, shout out, Beto. Thank you," Khalid said.

Right after Khalid's speech that included a nod to O'Rourke, AMA host, Tracee Ellis Ross, took a moment to mention that she's registered to vote, while sporting a "I am a voter" t-shirt.

See it:

8:57 p.m. ET, October 9, 2018

Mariah Carey performs in sea of pink at AMAs

By Chloe Melas

Mariah Carey took the stage at the AMAs to perform her new single, "With You," off her upcoming album. Fans praised the singer's performance on social media for going off without a hitch.

In years past, Carey has suffered from technical difficulties, most recently during her live New Year's Eve performance last year when an audio track malfunctioned, revealing Carey was lip syncing.

8:47 p.m. ET, October 9, 2018

Post Malone thanks fans, doesn't mention streak of bad luck

From CNN's Lisa Respers France

Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images For dcp
Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images For dcp

Post Malone debuted a new haircut and thanked fans for his favorite pop/rock male artist win. He said he's not good at speaking and didn't mention a streak of bad luck he had last month that included an emergency landing during a flight and a car accident.

8:26 p.m. ET, October 9, 2018

Tracee Ellis Ross says she'll 'feature black designers' in all her AMAs outfits. Here's one of them.

By Chloe Melas

Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images For dcp
Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images For dcp

Tracee Ellis Ross hosted the AMAs live from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles and brought her A-game. After busting out some serious dance moves to songs from Cardi B and Donald Glover, she draped a floor-length Gucci coat from their Dapper Dan collection over her shoulders.

She then said she plans to only wear outfits from black designers throughout the show.

According to Gucci's website, the collection is "inspired" by Daniel Day aka Dapper Dan Archive, a Harlem-based fashion designer who rose to prominence in the 80s.

8:12 p.m. ET, October 9, 2018

Taylor Swift kicks off the AMAs

By Chloe Melas

Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images For dcp
Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images For dcp

Taylor Swift kicked off the American Music Awards Tuesday night. It was her first awards show performance in nearly three years. Swift sang her hit, "I Did Something Bad" off her Reputation album.

Swift is up for four awards including "Artist of the Year."

7:52 p.m. ET, October 9, 2018

Cardi B and Drake lead tonight's show with 8 nominations

From CNN's Chloe Melas

Cardi B and Drake both have eight AMA nominations.
Cardi B and Drake both have eight AMA nominations.

Competition will be fierce at this year's American Music Awards.

"Black-ish" star Tracee Ellis Ross will host the AMAs, which air live on ABC at 8 p.m. ET/ 5 p.m. PT.

Taylor Swift will open the show — her first awards show performance in nearly three years.

Cardi B and Drake are both nominated for eight awards. Ed Sheeran and Post Malone follow with six nominations each, and Camila Cabello has five.

Drake, Imagine Dragons, Post Malone, Sheeran and Swift were all nominated for the artist of the year award.

Among the performances, a tribute to the late Aretha Franklin is planned.

Click here for a full list of the nominees.