Viewers tuning in for Kanye West‘s performance of “All Day” and “Black Skinhead” at the Billboard Music Awards Sunday were probably expecting the smoke and sparks. After all, it was a Kanye performance.
More confusing, however, was the absence of large chunks of audio from West’s performance. Tuesday, reps for the star released a statement slamming the event for its “unwarranted censorship” of West.
“Kanye West was grossly over-censored at the Billboard Music Awards,” the statement reads. “Non-profane lyrics such as ‘with my leather black jeans on’ were muted for over 30-second intervals. As a result, his voice and performance were seriously misrepresented.
“It is ridiculous that in 2015, unwarranted censorship is something that artists still have to fight against. Although West was clearly set up to face elements beyond his control during the live broadcast, he would like to apologize to the television audience who were unable to enjoy the performance the way he envisioned.”
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Rolling Stone reported that over a minute of West’s 5-minute performance was censored.
A production source told TMZ that West didn’t do a dress rehearsal for the show – which is not necessarily that odd – leaving the show’s censors possibly underprepared and over-vigilant. West’s performance from the show is below.