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NEW YORK (AP) — The backlash was swift for Madonna’s rambling, egocentric tribute to Aretha Franklin at the MTV Video Music Awards, with media and Queen-of-Soul fans wondering why she got the gig in the first place.
Dressed in flowing black with grandiose flourishes of African jewelry, Madonna’s send-off came before she presented the video of the year award to Camila Cabello on Monday night. She spoke at length about her own start in the business and her own career before thanking Franklin for “empowering all of us. R.E.S.P.E.C.T.”
Cabello - Award - Night - Havana - Video
Cabello then collected the biggest award of the night for her “Havana” video with a bow to Madonna, dedicating the trophy to, you guessed it, Madonna.
There was a short video of early Franklin that played before Madonna said that the icon who died Thursday “changed the course of my life,” and Franklin’s “Respect” played as the night’s closing credits rolled. But there was no live musical performance honoring the legend.
Madonna - Spiky - Silver - Headpiece - Necklaces
Some accused Madonna, in her spiky silver headpiece, heavy necklaces and beaded bracelets, of cultural appropriation. Far more accused her of making the show’s only tribute to Franklin all about herself.
“I’m so lost,” radio host Charlamagne Tha God tweeted. “I thought Madonna...
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