EntertainmentCelebrities Madonna hits back at VMA speech criticism The Material Girl explained on Instagram that her Aretha Franklin speech was never intended to be a tribute. Photo Credit: Getty Images for MTV / Michael Loccisano By Keira Alexander email@example.com @keira_alexander Updated August 21, 2018 4:25 PM Print Share fbShare Tweet Email Madonna took to Instagram on Tuesday to justify her angrily received Aretha Franklin tribute at the MTV Video Music Awards the night prior. The star’s speech was skewed toward the effect Franklin’s music had on her, rather than commemorating the late singer outright. The Queen of Pop’s explanation? It was never intended to be a tribute in the first place. “I was asked to present video of the year by MTV!” Madge, 60, said in a lengthy post. “And then they asked me to share any anecdotes I had in my career connected to Aretha Franklin! I shared a part of my journey and thanked Aretha for inspiring me along the way,” she continued. “I did not intend to do a tribute to her! That would be impossible in 2 minutes with all the noise and tinsel of an award show. I could never do her justice in this context or environment.” Viewers were swift to condemn the Material Girl on social media Monday for her VMAs appearance — the first gathering of top musicians since Franklin’s death at age 76 last week. In her speech, Madonna recalled her early days as an aspiring singer, including one audition where she performed an a cappella version of Franklin’s iconic “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman.” “Unfortunately most people have short attention spans, and are so quick to judge,” Madonna lamented on Instagram. “I love Aretha! R.E.S.P.E.C.T.” with Reuters By Keira Alexander firstname.lastname@example.org @keira_alexander Keira has been amNewYork's style and entertainment editor since 2015, covering beauty, fashion, décor, celebrity news and all things entertainment. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter More on this topic What you missed at the 2018 VMAsThe VMAs took over Radio City Music Hall. Comments We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.