Back in February, Quavo performed "Without You," his musical memorial to Takeoff, his nephew and fellow Migos member, who was tragically shot and killed in November 2022. You could hear the grief in his voice. "Tears rollin' down my eyes/Can't tell you how many times I cried," he rapped, wearing all black—including the opera-inspired mask that covered half of his face—while Takeoff's chain rested on a mic stand. It was a somber moment and emotional sendoff to one of the most influential rhymers of the 2010s. But it didn't completely feel like closure.
Following the performance, reports began to circulate about an incident backstage between Quavo and Offset, the third Migo, who had been feuding with his bandmates. Offset had reportedly sought to participate in the performance; Quavo said no, leading to what TMZ described as a "physical fight." (Offset has denied any altercation took place.)
Offset has publically grieved Takeoff over the past seven months since his death. But tonight, he finally got his chance to pay his respects in a way that is cathartic for all Migos fans—right next to Quavo. The two artists both took the stage in a surprise performance tonight at the BET Awards, which took place at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. They emerged as Takeoff's verse from "Hotel Lobby" played, before launching into their meteoric hit "Bad and Boujee," showing the synergy and camaraderie we all remember so well.
The hip-hop universe didn't feel aligned when the Migos were bickering. But it always felt like there was more time. Like they'd get back right at some point.
Although lyric sleuths have their theories, it's still unclear why Migos fractured last year. They'd been last seen together publicly in February 2022 at Kanye West's Donda 2 release event, according to Bossip. Quavo and Takeoff released a duo album last year called Unc & Phew while Offset prepared an as-yet-unreleased solo sophomore LP of his own. Despite Quavo seeming to rule out any future for Migos in a single titled "Greatness" that dropped in February ("Don’t ask about the group, he gone, we gone, young n***a it can’t come back," he rapped), the two surviving members were seen together about a week ago to commemorate what would've/should've been Takeoff's 29th birthday. But seeing the two friends turned foes rocking the stage once again is exactly what we needed—and perhaps what those two men needed as well.
The loss of Takeoff was tragic not only because of that life—all that talent—being ended before his time, while Quavo was present for what is surely the worst moment of his own life (which was inhumanely captured and shared). But it was also the idea that Offset was still at odds with the two rappers who were so instrumental in his own ascent. The hip-hop universe didn't feel aligned when the Migos were bickering. But it always felt like there was more time. Like they'd get back right at some point, even if that didn't lead to a fourth Culture album. The death of Takeoff meant the death of the Migos, a trio that has been a staple in the culture since erupting onto the national scene 10 years ago with "Versace." A collective that soundtracked moments in music, television, and internet culture that we'll never forget.
Tonight's performance honors not only Takeoff, but also the undeniable legacy of the group that brought us "Stir Fry," Fight Night," "Slippery," "Straightenin," "Hannah Montana," "Avalanche," "T-Shirt," and many more. It was just one more Migos memory. It was closure.