Why Beyoncé Is Changing 'Heated' Lyrics After 'Renaissance' Album Release

After six years of waiting, Beyoncé dropped her seventh studio album Renaissance on Friday, July 29.

The album has received critical acclaim and shot to number one in over 100 countries over the weekend, but there has also been some backlash over some lyrics in the song "Heated" causing her to change the lyrics.

Track number 11 on the album, includes the word sp**, offending some of her fans and listeners of the album.

In the four-minute-long song, which was co-written by Canadian rapper Drake, Beyoncé sings the lyrics "Sp***in' on that a**, sp*** on that a**." The song has caused offense as in the medical field, the term spastic which the word sp** derives from, refers to the disability "spastic cerebral palsy."

Spastic cerebral palsy is the most common type of cerebral palsy, a disability that affects movement and coordination.

A representative for Beyoncé has confirmed to Variety the lyrics will be replaced. They have also stated the lyrics were not intended in a "harmful way."

The short statement reads: "The word, not used intentionally in a harmful way, will be replaced."

At the moment it is not known what the new lyrics will be. Newsweek has reached out to Beyoncé's team for comment.

The lyrics inspired a thought piece by disability advocate Hannah Diviney, for The Guardian and disability support network Hireup, in which she wrote: "Beyoncé's commitment to storytelling musically and visually is unparalleled, as is her power to have the world paying attention to the narratives, struggles and nuanced lived experience of being a Black woman.… But that doesn't excuse her use of ableist language."

Beyonce renaissance heated lyrics
Beyoncé has changed lyrics to a song in her new album that some have found offensive. Above, Beyoncé performs during the 94th Oscars at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California, on March 27. Robyn Beck / AFP

Beyoncé is not the first artist to alter her lyrics in recent months.

Three-time Grammy winner Lizzo, removed the same word from her song "Grrrls" from her fourth studio album, "Special" where she sang " Do you see this s***? I'm a sp**."

Lizzo changed the lyrics to "Do you see this s***? Hold me back."

Announcing the change, Lizzo took to her social media accounts to address her fans.

She said: "It's been brought to my attention that there is a harmful word in my new song 'Grrrls.' Let me make one thing clear: I never want to promote the derogatory language. As a fat Black woman in America, I've had many hurtful words used against me, so I understand the power words can have (whether intentionally, or in my case, unintentionally). I'm proud to say there's a new version of "Grrrls" with a lyric change. This is the result of me listening and taking action. As an influential artist, I'm dedicated to being part of the change I've been waiting to see in the world. Xoxo, Lizzo"

Fans were particularly surprised Beyoncé had not noticed the term being used after the backlash Lizzo received.

Diviney tweeted: "So @Beyonce used the word 'spaz' in her new song Heated. Feels like a slap in the face to me, the disabled community & the progress we tried to make with Lizzo. Guess I'll just keep telling the whole industry to 'do better' until ableist slurs disappear from music."

A second Twitter user and autistic advocate, Callum Stephen said: "After the outcry from Lizzo using the word 'sp**', I can't believe that nobody in Beyoncé's team was aware of how hurtful the word is to many within the disabled community.

"Surely one of 'Heated's 11 writers and 10 producers must have known?"

A third Twitter user commented: "So so disappointed that Beyoncé has used an ableist slur in Heated.

"It's the same one Lizzo used (& corrected very gracefully)... this was high profile enough that the same mistake shouldn't have happened again. So sick of non-disabled artists not recognizing harm in their words"