When Taylor Swift won the VMA for Best Female Video in 2009 over Beyoncé (whose “All the Single Ladies” had left the world awestruck by divine choreography, minimalism, and that minimalism’s highlighting of Beyoncé’s body), Kanye infamously interrupted her speech by storming the stage, grabbing the mic, and saying that Beyoncé had made “one of the best videos of all time.” He came rather close to doing the same thing at last night’s Grammys ceremony, when Beck won Album of the Year for Morning Phase over Beyoncé for Beyoncé. As Beck took the stage, Kanye also ran up, then tossed it aside as a joke — which it sort of was and sort of wasn’t — then ran back offstage. Though it seemed an entirely self-aware, jocular throwback to Kanye’s more rambunctiously vocal days, it had some weight to it, at least for Kanye: both reactions occurred as a result of baffling Beyoncé-snubs.
Kanye confirmed the seriousness of his joke, speaking with E! after the ceremony, saying, “Beck needs to respect artistry and he should’ve given his award to Beyoncé.” He claimed that he “has [his] wife, daughter and clothing line,” and cited not endangering his daughter as the reason he didn’t ultimately say anything last night; he asserted that he would, however, “fight for creativity.” Watch his full explanation below: