6:42 AM PT -- 8/27 -- In addition to her new song, Miley also debuted some new ink on her left bicep. Keeping with the theme of the night for her, the new script tattoo also seemed to be all about the new, single Miley.
It reads, "My head was feeling scared, but my heart was feeling free." The line is from the Pixies song "The Thing."
Miley took the stage Monday night rocking a skin-tight black dress, singing her heart out as she performed her latest track, "Slide Away," which makes some not-so-subtle references to her breakup with the Australian actor.
It was a stirring performance, filmed in black-and-white ... and Miley got the crowd off its feet inside the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey where the awards show is going down.
Miley dropped the single earlier this month, only a few days after announcing her split with Liam ... and the lyrics seem to reflect the real-life struggles of their failed relationship, including drug and alcohol references.
We broke the story ... sources close to Miley told us she desperately tried to save their marriage, but she became tired of Liam's partying. His side says the drug and alcohol accusations are only a cover for Miley's recent outrageous public behavior.
Miley and Liam have a long history together ... they were together on and off for a decade, and tied the knot back in December, hosting family and friends at a wedding celebration inside their Nashville home. But, the good times didn't last.
Originally Published -- 8/26 7:14 PM PT
The 2019 VMAs were all about Shawn Mendes and some sexy senoritas ... and they dazzled behind the scenes.
The Prudential Center in Newark, NJ was the center of the music world Monday night, with tons of A-listers in the house for MTV's signature award show. Shawn performed his hit duet, "Senorita," with Camila Cabello ... but she wasn't the only mamacita turning heads.
Not to be outdone, Halsey showed some serious skin in a colorful dress, punctuated by rainbow streaks in her hair. Check out the pics ... and let your jaw drop.
Nicki was making her entrance at Radio City Music Hall Monday night, and Kylie was walking in her direction from the other end ... when she stopped in her tracks upon seeing Nicki. It's pretty clear she didn't want a confrontation -- 'cause she doubled back fast.
Can't blame her. Nicki put Kylie and her baby, Stormi, on blast this weekend ... blaming them for unscrupulously boosting Travis Scott's album sales by promoting his merch. She later went on to call Travis a "hoe n**** of the week" on her Apple Music radio show.
Looks like you can't avoid running into your problems sometimes -- but you can always run away from them. Kylie definitely didn't want that smoke.
Nicki WENT OFF on Travis during her Tuesday "Queen Radio" show ... giving the rapper the "Hoe N**** Of The Week" award and continuing to bash Travis and baby mama Kylie Jenner for what she says are unethical practices in promoting his new album.
Tell us how you really feel, Nicki!!!
Nicki is still SALTY about losing the no. 1 spot in album sales to Travis -- she's been griping about it all week -- and it doesn't sound like she'll get over 2nd place any time soon.
Nicki isn't afraid to air out dirty laundry ... even if other rappers are scared.
In light of Tuesday's radio rants ... it's a good thing Travis wasn't sitting behind Nicki at Monday night's VMAs.
Cardi B didn't perform at the VMAs, but she DID drop some bars at an afterparty ... and it was all new music. Cardi was feeling herself as she rapped on stage at Tao NYC ... throwing some major shade at Nicki Minaj in the process.
With baby daddy Offset hugging on her, Cardi B busted out some new lyrics ... 'I know how to do it / Get a bag, don't I / I know how to get a b**** mad' ... pretty clear she's referencing Nicki.
The shots didn't stop there.
In another new track, Cardi B raps ... 'I'm the queen of talking sh*t / yeah I'm backing it up / yeah, back, back, backing it up' ... that's another clear swipe at Nicki and her new album, 'Queen.'
Cardi then celebrated winning 3 awards by making a pit stop at McDonalds for a delicious treat.
Cardi pretty clearly shaded Nicki Minaj when she called herself "empress" during her speech. Nicki not only thinks of herself as the queen ... as we showed you, she actually thinks she's Harriet Tubman, something that has outraged non-fans and, frankly, even some of her diehard fans. Between Travis Scott, Kylie and now Cardi, Nicki had no place to safely turn in the venue.
Cardi B just showed up to the VMAs -- her first public event since giving birth last month -- and the rapper looks incredible.
CB arrived to Radio City Music Hall Monday evening in NYC rockin' a beautiful purple gown and a sweet new pixie cut. Oh, and her post-baby body is absolutely on point.
Believe it or not, Cardi just popped out baby Kulture a little over a month ago ... and it's clear she's snapped right back.
We broke the story ... Cardi will be opening the televised show in just a few minutes -- not with a musical performance, but with either a monologue or skit of some sort.
She confirmed the news earlier Monday that she wouldn't be rockin' the mic.
J Lo was honored with the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award at the show -- one of the biggest moments of the night.
Lopez performed a medley of hits including "Ain't It Funny" and "I'm Real" with Ja Rule -- while A-Rod watched gleefully from the crowd.
In fact, there was a hilarious gif of Alex's face lighting up as he watched J Lo twerk her ass off during the performance.
After the show, the couple hit up Beauty and Essex in New York City -- where they continued to dance the night away together while the DJ played some of Jen's hits ... along with other hip-hop classics.
Lopez even rapped along to a Cardi B song while the crowd cheered her on.
Jenny arrived to the show with her two kids -- but put them to bed before she hit the after-party.
Hey, mama's gotta let loose!
We got the 'Love & Hip Hop' star Monday as he was heading to Radio City Music Hall in NYC to attend the MTV awards show when he took some clear shots at Nicki on the heels of their online beef ... not to mention all her other Twitter squabbles this week.
As we reported ... Safaree claimed Nicki once tried to stab him with a knife in 2014 -- she called him a liar. Nicki also called out Travis Scott and Kylie Jenner over the weekend for working together to push his album sales past hers on the charts.
Safaree's got some thoughts on that too ... pick your battles, Nick. And grow with the times.
Our guy also asks if he beefed up security to avoid any nasty run-ins with Nicki on the red carpet -- like MTV brass is already doing to accommodate the feuding exes -- but he insists he's only rolling deep as a result of his robbery earlier this year.
As far as who should get top-tier seating between Nicki, Travis and Kylie ... Safaree's got a pretty hilarious answer ... and kind of an obvious one if you think about it.
Aerosmith will be the closing act for the 2018 VMAs this week -- and it might very well give us a glimpse of what's to come in Vegas.
Sources close to the band tell us Steven Tyler, Joe Perry and co. are taking the stage Monday night at Radio City Music Hall in NYC to close out MTV's award show. We're told they're going to be performing their smash hit "Walk This Way."
We got the band out in NYC Monday ... and each member seemed to drop hints at a possible collab for their performance.
Considering the size of the venue, it'll be the perfect warm-up for Aerosmith ... the band's got a Vegas residency coming up. As we reported ... the band announced they'll be hitting the strip next Spring and putting on 18 shows at the MGM Grand Park Theater ... which seats 5,200 people.
RCMH seats more people -- a skosh over 6,000 -- but is significantly smaller in square footage. All in all ... we're guessing it'll be good practice for the Boys from Boston on a smaller stage than what they're normally used to. Might as well get it in early and often.
Also noteworthy ... Aerosmith had a pretty epic opening performance at the VMAs in 1999, where they also played "Walk This Way" ... but had some help from Kid Rock and Run-D.M.C.
Funny how history repeats itself sometimes ... in reverse.
The ugly war of words between Nicki Minaj and Safaree could come to a head if the exes run into each other at the 2018 MTV Video Music Awards, but there's a plan in place to avoid that ... TMZ has learned.
Nicki and Safaree will be at the VMAs Monday night in NYC -- she's performing and he's repping VH1 -- so both will be doing press on the carpet outside Radio City Music Hall beforehand.
It will be the first time the 2 will be in the same vicinity since Safaree claimed Nicki stabbed him and tried to kill him. She fired back, calling him a thief and a liar.
We're told people in charge of security at the event are well aware of the bad blood, and extra measures -- including more guards -- are being taken to ensure the 2 don't have any interaction ... and no nasty confrontation.
Too bad ... sounds like it would be ratings gold.
The Robert E. Lee descendant, who denounced white supremacy during the VMAs, says that speech cost him his job as pastor of a North Carolina church.
Rev. Robert Wright Lee says factions of his United Church of Christ in Winston-Salem "were concerned about my speech and that I lifted up Black Lives Matter movement, the Women’s March, and Heather Heyer as examples of racial justice work."
Rev. Lee says there were also church members who supported his right to speak out, but were "uncomfortable with the attention" his MTV appearance was bringing the church. He says, "The church’s reaction was deeply hurtful to me."
His speech was seen as one of the standout moments of the award show -- yet Lee says the church planned to vote on whether to keep him or fire him ... so he resigned before they could do so.
Katy ducked out from introducing Taylor's new single "Look What You Made Me Do" Sunday during MTV's award show ... managing to steer clear of any mention of Taylor once it ended.
The show came out of commercial and went right into Taylor's video with just a generic PSA on the monitors at the Forum. Afterward, "Blackish" star Yara Shahidi came onstage to introduce a performance for Shawn Mendes.
Through it all ... Katy made herself scarce.
Seems like the honchos over at MTV were fully aware of how awkward it woulda been having Katy pitch the video premiere of her longtime pop foe ... with whom she hasn't officially buried the hatchet.
Taylor wasn't in the house Sunday ... she won Best Collaboration for her song with Zayn Malik, but neither came up to accept their award.
As for her video ... well, it sorta speaks for itself. Check it, Kanye.
Gucci Mane and his fiancee, Keyshia Ka'oir, are well into shooting their first reality show ... and we've got some details on what fans can expect.
Sources close to the BET show tell us ... the couple's been filming everything in their lives leading up to their $1 million dollar wedding in October, including the planning for the big day ... set to go down in Miami.
We're told several celebrity cameos are expected -- Trina and Monica have already taped -- and Gucci's performance with Fifth Harmony at the VMAs later this month will be included too.
We broke the story ... the rapper and his fiancee scored a fat contract for their BET show, which conveniently includes their wedding costs.
Open bar, y'all!!!
We know now the site is completely fake, and TMZ has learned the hoax was started because Drake pissed off one vengeful fan ... Joanne the Scammer.
Joanne is a character played by Branden Miller. He tells us ... he made the fake site as payback for Drake not taking a selfie with Joanne at the VMAs. Branden claims he got bum-rushed by security when he tried to take the shot.
He says he went home and created the site, which cost about $3k. It blew up, but when people found out it was a hoax he decided to reveal why he did it.
Branden's still pissed, and says he might keep the site up to taunt Drake with other pranks.
Simone Biles is the greatest gymnast in the world ... but even she couldn't avoid taking a spill because of those damn high heels.
We got Yeezy leaving The Mercer Hotel in NYC, and he says he can't understand why people are getting mad about him shouting out to Ray J. After all, they're all in the same bed together in his "Famous" vid.
Our photog also asked Kanye if there was anything at the VMAs he wanted to say but couldn't, and he did not disappoint ... with some ideas on how his school uniforms can save the world.