Beyoncé Implored Labels And Radio Stations To Be ‘More Open’ With Art In Her iHeartRadio Music Awards Speech

Last night at the iHeartRadio Music Awards in Los Angeles, Beyoncé appeared to accept the special Innovator Award from none other than Stevie Wonder — making it her first major outing since releasing her country album Cowboy Carter.

“Whenever anyone asks me if there’s anyone I could listen to for the rest of my life, it’s always you,” she first told Wonder. “God bless you.”

Beyoncé then started her moving speech. “Innovation starts with a dream, and the road to execute that dream can be very bumpy,” she said. “Being an innovator is doing what everyone believes is impossible… Being an innovator often means being criticized, which often will test your mental strength. Being an innovator is leaning on faith and trusting that God will catch you and guide you.”

“To all the record labels, every radio station & every award show, my hope is that we are more open to the joy and liberation that comes from enjoying art with no preconceived notions,” she said.

To close out the speech, Beyoncé then thanked her inspirations in Prince, Tracy Chapman, Linda Martell (who appeared on the new album), and more.

Check out a video of Beyoncé’s speech while accepting the award below.

Cowboy Carter is out now via Parkwood/Columbia. Find more information here.