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Lil Nas X says BET beef dates back to 2021

By | Published on Monday 27 June 2022

Lil Nas X

Lil Nas X has said that his anger at the BET Awards pre-dates his lack of nominations for this year’s event, which took place yesterday. Those comments follow the release of his new single, ‘Late To Da Party’, last week, which opens with a chant of “fuck BET”.

The rapper has been teasing the new track for several weeks while also speaking about his issues with BET, insisting that he is actually attempting to make a comment “about the bigger problem of homophobia in the black community”.

Now in a new interview with Rolling Stone, he and members of his team elaborate on that further, saying that the fall out between Nas and BET stems from his performance of his song ‘Montero (Call Me By Your Name)’ at last year’s awards show. He says that organisers became concerned about his appearance after the release of the ‘decent into hell’ themed video for the song.

“My relationship with BET has been painful and strained for quite some time”, he says. “It didn’t start with this year’s nominations like most people might think. They did let me perform on their show last year, but only after [I gave] assurances that I was not a satanist or devil worshiper, and that my performance would be appropriate for their audience”.

Previously defending itself following Nas’s criticisms, BET blamed its voting academy for the lack of any nominations for the rapper this year, and said that “his BET Awards 2021 performance was a highlight of our show – no one cheered louder that night than BET”.

But that is not how Lil Nas X and his team remember it – saying that producers of the show reacted angrily after the rapper kissed one of his male dancers as part of his performance.

“They say that ‘no one cheered louder’ for me than them that night”, the rapper says. “But the BET Awards team was actually very upset that I kissed my dancer onstage and vocalised their discontent with multiple members of my team immediately following the performance”.

One unnamed member of that team adds: “At some point after [Nas] got off stage, one of the BET producers came up to me and before I could even open my mouth, he looked at me and said, ‘That was really fucked up’”.

And another team member says: “It didn’t feel celebratory. The response I got back was that they felt taken advantage of. It’s almost like they didn’t mind sweet kind of gay ‘Old Town Road’ Lil Nas X, but this is too much. I think BET is doubling down on what they did wrong”.

“Instead of saying, ‘we got it wrong’, they said, ‘it’s [the voting] community and they don’t fuck with him,’ which is bullshit”, they go on. “All the accolades, the achievements Nas has had in his career, all the music people have consumed, the [voting] community doesn’t fuck with him? What are you talking about?”

In response to these new criticisms, BET says that the “summation of events around Lil Nas X’s 2021 BET Awards performance is simply untrue”, adding: “Since last year’s performance, we have been in touch to work on other projects. We are still excited about his previous performances and continue to wish him well”.

Anderson .Paak was the big winner at last night’s BET Awards, taking home two prizes for his collaborative project with Bruno Mars, Silk Sonic, as well as the Video Director Of The Year trophy. Kendrick Lamar also received two awards, but could not collect them in person because he was in the UK for his incredible Glastonbury headline show.