Janelle Monáe cut from live television during 'Black Lives Matter' speech against police brutality

The singer's performance of politically-charged new song was also taken offline

Chris Mandle
Monday 17 August 2015 17:47

Janelle Monáe was cut off during a speech against police brutality by an NBC anhor live on television.

The singer was invited to perform three songs on NBC’s The Today Show, including her new politically-charged song 'Hell You Talmout', which name checks a number of black men and women who have died at the hands of police officers including Eric Garner, Walter Scott and Sandra Bland.

The song also name-checks Trayvon Martin, who was shot dead by George Zimmerman in 2012 and Emmet Till, a 14-year-old whose murder in 1955 at the hands of white racists inspired a song by Bob Dylan.

Monáe closed the song with an empowering speech where she implored people to stand tall and not be silenced.

"Yes, Lord," she said. "God bless America. God bless all who’ve lost lives to police brutality. We want white America to know that we stand tall today. We want black America to know that we stand tall today. We will not be silenced."

She was then cut off by The Today Show anchor, who said: "We’ll have much more from Janelle Monáe … coming up."

The show went on to upload video performances of 'Tightrope' and 'Yoga' to their website, but not 'Hell You Talmout'.

NBC did not respond to a request by The Independent for a comment.

Text accompanying the video on The Today Show’s website said Monáe was no ‘cookie cutter artist’ and that ‘not everyone ‘gets’ Monáe yet, which is understandable’.

It comes after the singer led a protest through Philadelphia as part of the Black Lives Matter movement.

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