Last year Normani dropped one of the most iconic music videos for her song “Motivation”. Her sound, choreography, and style caught the eye of many as she received praise over social media. Fans were dressing up as her from the music video and learning her choreography, especially the basketball trick. However, people continued to find ways to bring her down. Many started to question her style and whether she was a R&B or pop artist. Wondering whether or not she had what it took to be a pop artist. This type of criticizing is what black women deal with in the music industry, especially dark-skinned women.
There are plenty more examples of the backlash and extensive criticism that black women face in the industry. Megan Thee Stallion, Zendaya, and Taylor swift are all tall individuals, however, only one of them is constantly being accused of being a man. People have constantly tried to enforce masculinity onto Megan Thee Stallion. Truth be told, her figure or weight has nothing to do with it. It is simply because she is a dark/brown skin woman. Connotations like such have negative effects on black women and their mental health.
Earlier in the year, Ari Lennox and Teyonna Taylor were compared to rottweilers. The tweet read, “Ari Lennox and Teyana Taylor’s ability to have dangerously high sex appeal while simultaneously looking like rottweilers will always amaze me”. You will not see comments like these made towards male artists. Female black artists’ talents are constantly overlooked and overshadowed by their appearance. It has become more apparent this year as they have been pumping out hit songs and features within the music industry.
Black women not only deserve more in the music because of the disdain regarding their complexion, but because their talent is neglected. ChloexHalle showcase their flawless vocals with every song and performance. The overlooked artists gave us The Ungodly Hour, an upbeat, refreshing release that displayed their growth and maturity. It’s a potent mix of lively performances and strong themes that resonate so strongly. Nevertheless, the artists are always treated as opening acts when in actuality they are the main performance.
Whether people choose to admit it or not, black women are rising within the music industry despite the difficulties they face. Black women should be able to breathe without being analyzed for perfection. I can only imagine how challenging it is being a woman of color in an industry that puts more value on your white and male peers. Being a woman of color in any profession comes with challenges and problems. The music industry has a chance to change its views in today’s world and time, it just needs more help from like-minded artists. Our beloved, talented, and beautiful black women, not only in music but everywhere, deserve better.