The country singer also dismissed his daughter's controversies as Miley "evolving as an artist"

Miley Cyrus’s dad, country musician Billy Ray Cyrus, has defended his daughter’s recent performances as her “evolving as an artist” and providing “a special moment”.

Following a series of controversies surrounding the former Hannah Montana star – the most widely-discussed being Cyrus’ recent performance at the MTV VMAs, where she twerked with ‘Blurred Lines’ singer Robin Thicke, and the singer’s video for new single ‘Wrecking Ball’, where Cyrus is seen completely naked swinging on the destruction implement – the star has come into criticism for providing a bad role model for her young Hannah Montana fans.

“I’m a singer-songwriter first and foremost, and I’m her daddy. I come from that school where it starts with a song, and it’s that magic moment when that song finds the right artist or singer and becomes a special moment in time,” Cyrus says. “Miley harnessed into something very special… she’s just Miley. She’s an artist. She’s real. What’s happened over the years is Miley’s reinvented her sound, she’s evolving as an artist herself. All of what everyone is calling controversy now – that’’ still my Miley.”

“I knew that she wanted to do something really special and something everyone would be talking about,” he said of her VMA performance. “I knew she’d been putting a lot of practice and thought into what happened in New York. Again it became that moment of a singer-songwriter-entertainer finding that special moment, and again controversy lies in that special moment. I don’t know any great artist who was lukewarm and the fans were just in the middle of it. You either love it or you hate it.”