J Balvin released his sixth album Jose last month, but its promotional rollout did not come without some controversy. Earlier this month, the singer released a video for “Perra,” with Dominican rapper Tokischa, and he was quickly hit with criticism over the way the visual portrayed Black women. In the video, Balvin is seen walking Black women around on leashes while they wore dog ears. Among its critics was the singer’s own mother, who spoke to Cosmovisión, a Colombian news station, about it. “When I found out [about “Perra”], I called him … [and asked], “Where is the Josésito that I know?” she said. “That song is not … I don’t even know what to say. I did not see my José anywhere.”
Weeks after the controversy, J Balvin has issued an apology on his Instagram story. “I want to say sorry to whomever felt offended, especially to the Black community,” he wrote. “That’s not who I am. I’m about tolerance, love, and inclusivity. I also like to support new artists, in this case Tokischa, a woman who supports her people, her community and also empowers women.”
Balvin added, “As a form of respect, I removed the video eight days ago. But because the criticism continued, I’m here making a statement.” He concluded with an apology to his mother. “Mom, I’m sorry too,” he said. “Life gets better each day. Thank you for listening to me.”
You can watch Balvin’s full apology video here.
Jose is out now via Universal Latin. Get it here.