(CNN) -- She might have had the world talking after her controversial appearance at MTV's Video Music Awards last month, but to at least one person, Miley Cyrus is still just who she is.
"She's just Miley," her father, Billy Ray Cyrus, told CNN's "Piers Morgan Live."
"She's an artist. She's real. I think that what's happened over the years, Miley has been reinventing her sound. She's evolving as an artist herself. I think that all of what everyone is calling controversy now, that's still my Miley," he said.
Billy Ray Cyrus spoke at length Thursday night about his daughter's performance at the VMAs.
You know the one.
Wearing a flesh-toned bra and matching underwear, Miley Cyrus appeared on stage with gigantic, dancing bears and stunned the crowd by grinding against singer-songwriter Robin Thicke and yes -- twerking.
The performance was a far cry from her Disney days as "Hannah Montana."
Billy Ray Cyrus said he had known his daughter planned to do "something really special" at the VMAs to get everyone talking.
"Miley's smart enough to know that to come out of the shadows of 'Hannah Montana,' it really takes something extremely drastic, which when you go to that level, it creates passion, and passion is either love or hate. But there's no middle of the road for passion," he said, adding that the performance pushed his daughter to new heights.
"She has risen to a whole new level. I thought I had seen it all -- until these last couple of weeks," he told CNN's Morgan.