Caveat: These incidents are about the institution of whiteness. These are not personal attacks on individuals or so-called “haterade.”
1. All of the accolades heaped on Adele as if Teena Marie never existed. How can it be racist if they both are white? Because Teena Marie's white card was revoked when she refused to sellout and focus on catering to a pop audience. It did not help that she had a personal relationship with Rick James who was a Black man. It is also interesting to know that Adele's music gets played on urban and pop stations where Marie was and is only heard on Black radio. And for that matter why doesn't Jill Scott get played on pop radio if she influenced Adele? But even more telling is the fact that when Blacks like Fishbone do rock music they don't get played on rock stations.
2. Russell Brand comparing Amy Winehouse to Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday at the MTV VMA's when both women died after setting new standards in jazz. Winehouse's work is critically acclaimed but to say that she was singing in the tradition of both is to suggest that her work has the same far-reaching influence as Holiday's and Fitzgerald's when enough time has not passed yet for that to be proven. Most jazz vocalists with any sense of their craft are singing in the tradition of Billie Holiday and Ella Fitzgerald.This line of thinking comes from the idea that whites doing Black music is more commendable because it is something that they are not normally expected to do in contrast to the racist idea that "all Blacks are entertainers."
3. Vibe contradicting itself by giving white singer Amy Winehouse the cover after her death thus destroying Kelly Rowland's shine when Winehouse's music did not represent the Vibe brand. But they did not give a cover to white soul singer Teena Marie despite covering her throughout the years.
4. All of the unconditional praise heaped on Mac Miller’s rhyming skills when he will never even come close to Eminem’s abilities on a bad day. Since when did Donald Trump, who has a history of racist housing practices, and is a birther, care about hip-hop enough to compliment a rapper? And no, this isn’t just about Trump complimenting the success of Miller’s song “Donald Trump” because he obviously listens to Eminem. Don’t agree? Watch the documentary on Jack Johnson called “Unforgivable Blackness” then watch James Earl Jones in “The Great White Hope.”
5. The Rock Hall of Fame inducting The Beastie Boys BEFORE Eric B. & Rakim when they made the true innovations in the artform unless of course this is about the bean-counting perspective of "whatever sells the most must be the best. Twenty-seven years after Run DMC's "King of Rock," The Rock Hall still believes that the rock star is a white male. They finally accepted that he wouldn't hold a guitar but he's still white.
This is a short clip of a recording for J.Dilla’s Rebirth Of Detroit project. Boldy James, Chuck Inglish and Jonathan Taylor are in the studio with Ma Dukes for the CD that will come out sometime this year.
Muema is a New York City based filmmaker working on a project about house music and global dance music culture. He’s currently raising money for the film through Rockethub. He’s already interviewed Tony Humphries, Louie Vega, Barbara Tucker, Joi Cardwell and David Morales among others. Check out the clip and see if you can donate!