BET Apologizes to Usher, Says “Audio Malfunction” Led to Portions of His Speech Being “Inadvertently Muted”

When Usher received the Lifetime Achievement Award during Sunday’s BET Awards, a good amount of his speech was muted. But BET has apologized to the singer, adding that an “audio malfunction” led to portions of his 13-minute speech being “inadvertently muted.”

Usher received the honor at the Peacock Theater in Los Angeles during his 30th year in music. He was serenaded by young acts performing his music in his honor, including Teyana Taylor, Keke Palmer, Childish Gambino, Chloe, Coco Jones, Tinashe, Summer Walker, Latto and Marsha Ambrosius.

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During his acceptance speech — one he said he didn’t pre-write — he got passionate and some of his words cut off as he began to curse to fully express himself.

“Celebrating global icon Usher on our stage with a star-studded tribute and having him accept his award with a heartfelt speech was an honor. 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,” a BET spokesperson tells The Hollywood Reporter. “Fans can catch his full uninterrupted speech across BET platforms and tonight’s encore on BET.”

During his speech, Usher removed his glasses as his words got serious — mentioning his father’s missteps and honoring the supportive men who stood behind him, including executives and producers Babyface, L.A. Reid, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Jermaine Dupri and others.

Usher also called on the crowd to forgive those who have wronged you. “We gotta be willing to forgive. We gotta be willing to be open. I’m telling you — 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,” Usher said as the audience cheered. “Look at what I was able to usher in. That’s what’s real and that’s what makes us human.”

Watch Usher’s full acceptance speech below.

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