Published: Tue, August 21, 2018
Life&Culture | By Sue Mclaughlin

Everyone's giving out about Madonna's 'disrespectful' Aretha Franklin tribute

Everyone's giving out about Madonna's 'disrespectful' Aretha Franklin tribute

"She led me to where I am today".

"Because none of this would have happened, could have happened, without our lady of soul".

Before she presented the Video of the Year award, the Material Girl- who turned 60 the same day Franklin died of pancreatic cancer on August 16- took a moment to acknowledge the Queen of Soul's recent passing.

Viewers reacted swiftly on social media to Madonna's story and her attempt to honor Franklin.

She delivered a five-minute speech ending with her giving thanks to Franklin for "empowering all of us".

"She then recounted the beginning of her career and an audition for French disco producers where she sang "(You Make Me Feel) Like A Natural Woman". Though, she said, the two men who she was auditioning for didn't believe "some skinny-ass white girl" was going to "belt out a song by one of the greatest soul singers that ever lived".

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"Madonna presents an Aretha Franklin tribute by Madonna featuring Madonna with Madonna and Madonna as 'Madonna, '" joked EW's Marc Snetiker. "R-E-S-P-E-C-T", she said. "Long live the queen". I said, 'You know, by Aretha Franklin.' Again, mmhmm.

"Madonna spoke about herself during that entire Aretha Franklin speech", one remarked. "A capella? I said, 'Bitch, I'm Madonna, '" Madonna said, as the audience cheered.

"A couple of months ago, a lot of people were saying, "You are gambling your career, you are having a baby". but I had the baby and now I still win an award", she told the crowd. "Heavy on the Mayonnaise...", Charlamagne Tha God wrote on Twitter.

"Does Madonna know Madonna didn't die?"

"Whoever at the #VMAs let Madonna get on stage and give a tribute to @ArethaFranklin or whatever that was really should be out of a job right about.now", tweeted Alicia Garza, co-founder of the Black Lives Matter movement. Unsurprisingly, Twitter called Madge out immediately for focusing on herself rather than actually paying tribute to Aretha Franklin. "Very disappointing", one user wrote. She even offered auxiliary details about "getting robbed, held at gunpoint, and being mistaken for a prostitute in my third-floor walk-up that was a crack house", which probably didn't need to be included in a tribute about someone else.

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