At last night’s Grammys, Jennifer Lopez performed a tribute to Motown music onstage with Smokey Robinson and Ne-Yo. And after the 49-year-old songstress received lots of criticism for her role in the musical tribute, Smokey, 78, spoke out to defend Jennifer’s inclusion in the special performance.
“I don’t think anyone who is intelligent is upset. I think anyone who is upset is stupid. Who’s stupid enough to protest Jennifer Lopez doing anything for Motown?” the singer told Variety at Clive Davis’ pre-Grammy gala on Saturday, February 9, adding that Motown music is “for everybody.” Watch Jennifer’s Motown tribute performance at the Grammys in the video below!
When Jennifer was announced as the main act for the Grammys Motown performance, many people slammed the decision and thought a black singer should head the medley of songs made popular by Marvin Gaye, The Supremes, Gladys Knight & the Pips and The Temptations.
“J.Lo better not salsa her way to the cookout because she is uninvited for that terrible performance,” preacher Jared Sawyer Jr. wrote on Twitter on Sunday, February 10 following Jen’s time onstage. “How do you do a Motown tribute without an ALL BLACK cast of artists?! And it’s Black History Month too.”
He also tweeted his suggested list of black singers who could have done the performance in Jennifer’s place. “People who could’ve done the Motown tribute: Gladys Knight, Stevie Wonder, Patti LaBelle, Jennifer Hudson, Tina Turner or practically anyone else,” Sawyer wrote.
Before the Grammys began, Jennifer revealed on the red carpet that she was dedicating her Motown performance to her mother, Guadalupe Rodríguez. “Mommy, this is for you because we used to dance around to this music. I grew up with this music and me and my sisters, the three of us, we were, like, the backups. We were The Temptations and we just sing with her and I feel it’s a dream come true,” she told E!.