Justin Bieber among black entertainment nominees

Tue May 18, 2010 8:50pm EDT
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By Walker Simon

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Baby-faced Canadian teen idol Justin Bieber scored a nomination on Tuesday for a 2010 Black Entertainment Television award.

Bieber, 16, will compete in the best new artist category and was nominated for the awards alongside such prominent black performers as rapper Jay-Z, who led the field with five nominations, and his wife Beyonce, who scored four.

The BET Awards typically honor black singers, actors, actresses and athletes, but officials described Bieber as a cross-over artist.

"Bieber has crossed the color boundaries the same way that hip-hop has crossed the boundaries the other way for a number of years," said Stephen Hill, BET's President of Music Programing and Specials. The awards will be held on Los Angeles on June 27.

Jay-Z's five nominations included nods for best male hip hop artist, best collaboration and viewers' choice as well as two nominations for video of the year.

Tied with Beyonce with four nominations were singers Alicia Keys, Trey Songz and Canadian Melanie Fiona, who will compete with Bieber and rapper Drake's group Young Money in the best new artist category.

Bieber was signed to a music label with the help of Usher, who drew a nomination for best male rhythm and blues artist.

"He's had rhythm in his music," said Hill. "He makes the type of music our audience likes."   Continued...

<p>Justin Bieber performs at the 2010 Wango Tango concert in Los Angeles May 15, 2010. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni</p>