Things are getting emotional on the 2016 American Music Awards red carpet. And yes, that's a very good thing. 

Singer Ariana Grande is nominated for the coveted Artist of the Year award, and she stopped by to talk to E! News' Jason Kennedyon her way down the red carpet. Now, before you go thinking that this nod is just a drop in the bucket for the popular singer, it's actually extra special because it's the biggest fan-voted awards show. So yeah, the honor is very personal. 

"I saw my fans voting their a--es off online and I appreciate them so much," Grande gushed of her fans. "I love them from the bottom of my heart no matter what. I appreciate all of that, but at the same time I don't need an award to let me know how much they love me."

But giving props to her adoring public isn't the only thing on Ariana's to-do list tonight—she'll be performing "Side to Side" alongside collaborator Nicki Minaj. And yes, she's pumped. 

"I love Nicki, this is our third song together and it's one of my favorites," Grande told E! "I'm very excited to perform with her tonight. She is a really good friend to me; we have fun. And we make a lot of good songs together. Girl power!"

And when it comes to lady love, Nicki Minaj isn't the only powerful female that Ariana is spending time with at the award show. She received a very special surprise guest moments before she made her red carpet debut. 

"My Nonna just surprised me!" she exclaimed. "She was my date last year and I posted that I missed her, and ten minutes later she walked in my door. How sweet is that?"

It's even sweeter when you find out that Ariana is actually riding solo at the big show—boyfriend Mac Miller is currently on tour, so she told E!'s Jason Kennedy that FaceTime would have to do for them tonight. But something tells us that she'll be plenty busy without her date.

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