Thursday, February 16, 2017

At The Grammys, Beyonce Got the Clinton Treatment

Imagine busting your ass from your teenage years to get successful. You put in immense work. You break a few rules along the way. At certain points, you carve your own path. You completely change the game, and because of it, you come out on top. If you’re a dude, then this is your success story. However, if you’re a woman, you might hit that ceiling and then fall right back down. Such is the way of politics.
Look at Barack Obama. His entire life is an anomaly. His name is Barack HUSSEIN Obama, and he won TWO presidential elections, all in the midst of the most ridiculous Islamophobia in the our nation’s history. Not everyone like him, but he left on top.
Hillary Clinton carved her own path, too. She even put her career on hold for 8 years, and she caught shade from every direction. She revved her career back up, and she got shade for doing that. She dealt with her husband’s infidelity, and she caught shade for staying with him. She became Secretary of State and People freaked out about her emails and Benghazi, neither “scandal” of which was actually as grave as the old white men who lost their shit about them made them out to be. SHe ran for President twice, and the second time, she actually got 2.9 million more votes than her opponent, and she STILL lost. Even now, she’s been low key, and people are talking shit about her NOT being in the public eye in the presidential aftermath. She’s damned if she does, damned if she doesn’t.
The Grammy judges this year treated Beyonce the way America treated Hillary Clinton for the last 25 years. She was up for 9 awards, and she won 2. She essentially went head to head with Adele, and even ADELE said that she didn’t deserve to win as many as she did. You know something's up when one of your COMPETITORS says something is up.
I would say that this is just how award shows go: often nominated, but seldom won. However, there was another trailblazer who chose his own path and didn’t follow conventional rules in the music industry who won big. Chance the Rapper won three of the 7 awards for which he was nominated. Chance’s wins were well deserved. If you follow him, you know he released all his albums as “mixtapes”, and he put them on streaming/downloading sites for free. He’s not on a label, either. He is the definition of independent. I am not sure if there were any “industry” rules that he followed in his career, but it’s been working for him, because he’s seen everywhere from SXSW to Kit Kat commercials. He was rewarded for his work.
Beyonce, on the other hand, did not go a conventional route to release Lemonade. As beyonce does, she released it in the dead of night, as if she were a Tooth Fairy Songstress. The music was accompanied by an album long video that could only be seen on a few platforms. She even did a country-style song, and it was dope! For all her efforts, the music execs who decide who wins a Grammy dragged her. They accused her of trying to “run the table”, because she didn’t use a major label, she blazed her own trail in production and distribution, and she didn’t stick to just R&B.
There is some great irony in the proprietors of an award show that praises creativity admonishing someone for being creative. I’m not even a big fan of Beyonce, and I see how she got snubbed. Lemonade was fire. To say that she was too ambitious because she made a rock/country song? BLACK PEOPLE MADE ROCK AND COUNTRY. There would be no “American Music Industry” without black people, and to say that a black person is “overstepping her boundaries” by making a song in the style of something her predecessors created? Utter bullshit.

Regardless, Beyonce will be all right. She is one half (60%) of a power couple. She has twins on the way, and when those children grow up, I expect that they’ll form a supergroup with Blue Ivy and take over the world, so long as there IS still a world to overtake.

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