Lil Mama & Alicia Keys Hug In Public 13 Years After VMAs Fiasco

WATCH: Lil Mama And Alicia Keys Hug In Public For The First Time Since 2009 VMAs Performance


It’s all good between fellow New Yorkers Lil Mama and Alicia Keys! Cameras recently captured the ladies embracing in public for the first since 2009. That year the Lip Gloss rapper hopped on stage while Alicia and Jay-Z performed Empire State of Mind at the Video Music Awards (VMAs). The moment later became a long-running joke in internet and hip-hop history–though much of it to the detriment of Mama’s career and mental health.

Their hug occurred on Wednesday (March 29) while at an event for Teyana Taylor’s new film A Thousand and One. Alicia and Lil Mama seemingly exchanged a few words while embracing for several seconds. Both women were all smiles as they lingered for a moment, holding hands. Teyana, who was standing near the women, also flashed Lil Mama a smile following the hug.

On Twitter, the clip @DiaryOfKeysus shared has gained over 142,000 views and more than 400 retweets.

RELATED: Alicia Keys Says Jay-Z Told Her About Lil Mama Joining Them On Stage During Their 2009 VMAs Performance



Alicia Keys Didn't Know Lil Mama Was On Stage Until Jay-Z Told Her

In a December 2021 interview with Drink Champs, Alicia offered additional insight into the VMAs moment. She claimed to be so focused on her performance that she never noticed Lil Mama. However, after their performance ended, Keys said Jay-Z, who shot Mama a look and tapped her leg onstage, told her what happened.

“I went backstage and Jay was like ‘so you ain’t see that,’ Alicia said. “And I was like ‘what.’ And he was like ‘nah you ain’t just see what just happened.’ And I was like ‘yeah we killed it that’s what just happened.”

Within the same time frame, Alicia again said she was unaware of Lil Mama’s presence during a Complex interview.

The day after she hopped on stage, Lil Mama apologized to Jay-Z and Keys on MTV News. She explained that their performance made her emotional, and she started to feel herself, Jay, and “the energy.”

“And I got up and started walking towards the stage, and I got up there, and I was just rooting him on, as a champion, picking up my brother,” Mama said.

A few weeks after the 2009 VMAs, Jay-Z reportedly told Angie Martinez that he found Mama’s disruption “out of line.”

“To interrupt that moment for us, I don’t think that was the right thing to do,” the 4:44 artist said. “It was a lot of planning that went into that performance.”

Following Alicia’s Drink Champs interview, Jay-Z told Genius’ Rob Markman that he’d forgiven Lil Mama for the disruption. Alicia was also part of the conversation.

“…That’s our sister. Man, we love her. I wouldn’t recommend people just jumping on other artists’ stages, but we don’t wish her no harm. That’s corny,” Hov said in December 2021.

Jay-Z added:

“She’s a New Yorker…she got excited. Things happen. Of course, we love her…yes, she’s forgiven. It’s all love, and she was coming from a place of love it’s just…may have been a little too excited.”

In October 2021, Keys also said she forgave Lil Mama during an interview on The Morning Hustle. 

“That was then. You know, she’s from New York too. You know, I think she felt the energy of the record and she loved it and she couldn’t hold herself back. Look, this is what my music does to people. What can we say?”


Lil Mama Previously Thanked Jay-Z And Alicia Keys For Their Discussion Of The VMAs Performance

In 2015, Lil Mama revealed to Complex she had “a tough time” following the VMAs. She was relentlessly ridiculed online–particularly on the then still-growing platform, Twitter.

Mama added that Jay-Z and Alicia’s lack of acknowledgment of her initial public apology taught her “to be stronger and understand this is a business.”

In December 2021, she shared her thoughts on Jay-Z and Alicia addressing the incident and finally extending their public forgiveness.

On Instagram, Mama wrote:

“I appreciate hearing this portion of last night’s conversation. This has always been my stance, Love. Love for both my big brother, big sister, and my city. It brings clarity to all of us as a community to actually hear these words from our legendary leaders. Hip Hop has always been a culture to me, not just music.. with that, I believe fellowship is very important to cultural growth. Reaching out to say you can do better or even to say your doing great can make the world of difference. Thanks, Jay-Z and Alicia Keys for using your voices in this conversation.”

On Wednesday (March 29), Lil Mama stepped into The Shade Room, leaving a comment on the hug video repost.

“I was a wild young bull…love to see the elevation,” Mama wrote.


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