“I break tradition. Sometimes my tries are outside the lines.”- Natasha Bedingfield
Oh how Natasha Bedingfield often sings my heart and mind. And you have to love that name.
Anyway, today’s blog was inspired by two events in popular culture.
Last night, I was watching the AMAs on my television and via Twitter. Taylor Swift won quite a few awards and I noticed that my timelines erupted with much support for Kanye’s treatment of Swift a couple of years ago at the VMA’s. For the record, I believed Kanye was rude then and I still believe he was rude now. From where I stood, Swift did nothing to West. She just won an award that he believed belonged to another artist. However, for those of us who don’t mind venturing to radio stations that play Top 100 fare, we know you couldn’t turn the radio on without hearing her songs. She was as inescapable as the Beyonce that she won against.
I digress. So let’s move on to today. A story was released that spoke of how those attending Nascar event booed First Lady Michelle Obama. Mind you, she came to talk about a bipartisan issue. And guess what? The same people who wanted Kanye to shut people up last night were up in arms about the country’s First Lady being booed. Mind you, many presidents and their associates have been booed before. But oh no, now it’s rude to interrupt someone.
Guess what, it was rude then and it is rude now. But I guess all these people will teach their children that it is fine to be rude to the people we don’t like but it’s blasphemous to be rude to the people that we adore. Especially when skin color is involved.
On to the next one. I am a faithful viewer of most reality shows showcasing singing talent and I am a proud alumna of Howard University. Nevertheless, when I watched the Sing-Off, the group Afro Blue that represented my alma mater disappointed me many times. For one thing, they were not consistent. Secondly, as a damn-near connoisseur of these vocal shows, the one thing I can’t stand hearing beyond the second season of a show is “we don’t do that” or “we’re not familiar with that.” And Afro-Blue kept saying it week after week. Once they pretty much said they didn’t know the words to “We Belong Together” by my beloved Mariah Carey, I just knew they were not winning. Did I forget to mention that they wound up in the bottom two on R&B night? How are you the only all-black group and end up in the bottom two on that night. The Sing-Off is an acapella show, not a jazz showcase. I like the Dartmouth Aires. They are entertaining. I like Pentatonix. They’re talented. I could live without Urban Method.
But in all honesty, I couldn’t really get down with Afro Blue. Don’t get me wrong, when they performed well, I applauded. And I understand that by affiliation I am supposed to support them. HOWEVER, anybody who knows me knows that affiliation only means I give someone a little bit more of a chance. Affiliation does not make me deaf, dumb or blind to all that I have learned about music competitions over the years. My support in instances like this is earned because I don’t know them like that and I know what I like.
I guess because I’m black and I went to HU, I’m not supposed to feel that way, right?