Why Was Kanye West Censored So Much At The Billboard Music Awards? Perhaps He Was Making A Statement — UPDATE
So... that was interesting. Kanye West's Billboard Music Awards performance was one of the most anticipated events of the night — he was last up, after all. But things took an odd turn when about half of West's performance seemed to be censored leaving fans at home unable to hear anything. On top of that, we also couldn't see anything, because West chose to perform surrounded by flames and fog machines. I, for one, was left pondering one of life's great philosophical questions: was it art or was someone messing with Kanye West's steez?
(Update: ABC has released a statement to Bustle in regards to Kanye West's performance which reads: Kanye West is an incredible performer and one of today's most influential artists, however he did not make his performance available for review prior to air resulting in an edited appearance in tonight's live broadcast.)
The first song West performed, "All Day" reportedly uses the n-word 39 times, so it wouldn't be a surprise if some of the lyrics were censored. Seriously though, if the song has that much swearing, why would he be asked to perform it in the first place? And if he was asked to perform it, and did something like replace the swear words with other lyrics, then why would he be censored THAT MUCH? West's second song, "Black Skinhead" doesn't have nearly as much swearing as "All Day" and was bleeped just as much as his first song. It seemed like after a point, West may have been censored in anticipation of his lyrics including swearing, and gotten bleeped even when he wasn't saying anything that wouldn't normally have been allowed.
My guess is that West is going to have a lot to say about this very soon. He's not one to hold his tongue, especially when his art is controlled by forces other than himself. Could it be that he decided to perform this song with the original lyrics specifically to make a point? With this being Kanye West, I wouldn't be surprised.
For now, viewers are speaking out and they don't know what the heck they just saw, either: