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Bowie posthumously wins main Brit award

David Bowie has posthumously been awarded the Brit award for British male solo artist. The Brits also remembered George Michael, who died on Christmas Day last year aged 53, and Leonard Cohen.

Bowie - who died in January 2016 - beat nominees Craig David, Michael Kiwanuka, Kano and Skepta in the first posthumous award in Brits history. Bowie was also nominated in the album of the year category for his last album, "Blackstar," which picked up five awards at the Grammys earlier in February.

Bowie's award was accepted by Michael C. Hall, star of "Lazarus," a stage musical based around the late artist's songs.

"If David Bowie could be here tonight, he probably wouldn't be here tonight," Hall quipped.

The British female solo artist award went to Emeli Sande, who shot to stardom after performances at the 2012 London Olympics.

The best British group statuette went to The 1975, a quartet from Manchester.

Singer-songwriter Rag'n'Bone Man, who was already announced as the "Critics Choice" pick for this year's awards, also won "British Breakthrough Act."

The international awards went to global stars - none of whom came to accept them. Drake was named international male solo artist, while Beyonce took the international female prize. A Tribe Called Quest took the trophy for international group.

A video montage of featuring the many late artists who died in 2016 included Leonard Cohen, who passed away in November aged 82. 

Held in London's O2 arena, the British Record Industry Trust (BRIT) awards are the mainstream British music industry's top awards ceremony.

The British music industry contributed £4.1 billion (4.8 billion euros) to the UK economy in 2015 and British artists accounted for one of every six albums purchased worldwide.

Watch video 02:38

David Bowie's Berlin

jbh/rc (AFP, AP, Reuters)

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