BET Awards apologises to Usher for ‘audio malfunction’ that muted speech, Latest Music News - The New Paper

BET Awards apologises to Usher for ‘audio malfunction’ that muted speech

American R&B singer-songwriter Usher accepted his Lifetime Achievement Award at the BET Awards on June 30 and delivered an emotional speech on stage.

Unfortunately, most people watching the live telecast of the annual ceremony – which aired on the BET cable channel and was held this year at the Peacock Theater in Los Angeles, California – did not catch a significant portion of it.

Hollywood news site Deadline reported that about five minutes of the 45-year-old star’s 13-minute speech was muted.

BET Awards apologised to Usher in a statement that said: “Celebrating global icon Usher on our stage with a star-studded tribute and having him accept his award with a heartfelt speech was an honour.

“Due to an audio malfunction during the live telecast, portions of his speech were inadvertently muted. We extend our sincere apologies to Usher, as we couldn’t be more grateful for his participation in culture’s biggest night.”

Usher’s full speech is now available on BET’s official YouTube site, and the audio is bleeped out only for his use of expletives.

Fans and viewers speculated about why his speech was seemingly “censored”, with many concluding that it was due to his heavy use of profanities.

The BET Awards are an annual awards show established in 2001 by the Black Entertainment Television (BET) network to celebrate black entertainers.

Usher, known for hit songs such as Yeah! (2004), My Boo (2004) and OMG (2010), was given an all-star tribute from performers such as Childish Gambino, Keke Palmer and more.

He later went onstage in front of a standing, cheering crowd to receive his Lifetime Achievement Award and launched into a deeply personal and emotional speech, where he referenced fatherhood and how his own father, Usher Raymond III, left him and his mother when he was a baby.

“I can proudly say I’m the b*****d of Usher,” he said. “You’re standing before a man who had to forgive a man who never showed up, ever, and look at what I made with it.”

He thanked his mother, his wife Jennifer Goicoechea, his four children aged two to 16, his fans as well as his team who stuck by him when he was down, and the people in the industry whom he looked up to as father figures.

He named late singer, actor and civil rights activist Harry Belafonte, who died in April 2023, record producer Quincy Jones and late music executive and film producer Clarence Avant as men he admired.