Miley Cyrus is accused of cultural appropriation after her interview with Billboard. Miley’s comments over hip-hop culture unleashed the wrath of people on social media.
Miley, who recently debuted the first track from her forthcoming album, also debuted a back to her country roots appearance. People are not having it and are accusing her of dissing black culture as is not longer profitable for her.
Miley Cyrus addressed the hip-hop scene and recent jams
Earlier this month, the perpetual chameleon Miley Cyrus, graced the cover of Billboard and quickly found herself in a controversy, looking really different to what we are used too,
Miley opened up about her new music, her new self, and marijuana use. The pictures that accompanied the interview were a total display of county-ness, cowboy boots, shorts and even a toy pony. The outfit wasn’t coincidental, as the interview confirmed, Miley moved away from her hip-hop influenced music and went more rootsy.
As she talked about her new musical direction, she praised Kendrick Lamar‘s song Humble but noted,
“I love that because it’s not ‘Come sit on my d*ck, suck on my c*ck.’ I can’t listen to that anymore. That’s what pushed me out of the hip-hop scene a little. It was too much ‘Lamborghini, got my Rolex, got a girl on my c*ck’ — I am so not that.”
Miley went on to add: “I was torn on whether I was going to work with certain producers that I really like. But I feel if we’re not on the same page politically…. My record is political, but the sound bite doesn’t stop there.”
These comments were not welcomed by people who consider that Miley’s not only stereotyping hip-hop culture but also dismissing it after taken profit of it.
Miley and the hip-hop scene
Miley’s relationship with hip-hop has had its ups and downs.In 2009, she sang about Jay-Z on her smash “Party in the USA.” Later, she would reveal that she had never heard a Jay-Z song.
That same year, Jay-Z referenced Cyrus on “Somewhereinamerica”: “Feds still lurking / They see I’m still putting work in / ‘Cause somewhere in America, Miley Cyrus is still twerkin’…Twerk, twerk, Miley, Miley…Only in America.”
By the time Bangerz came out, Cyrus seemed to be more in tune with rap. She collaborated with Nelly, Future, Big Sean, Ludacris, Mike WiLL, and French Montana. At around this time, she was accused of cultural appropriation for twerking. For some, the sudden change and the embracement of black culture were only for personal gain.
At the time, Miley was making the transition between former child star into and adult star. For some, she found in twerking and other traditional art forms the way to attract followers with a “rebel” image.
Now, she’s leaving aside all the Bangerz extravaganza to attract a country audience. She was called out for the dismissal of hip-hop culture by several critics pointing out to white stars’ practice of using a culture and then dismiss it.
Zeba Blay wrote at Huffington Post, “Cyrus’ new image… serves as a striking example of how easy it is for white artists to exploit and then discard black and hip-hop culture in order to stay relevant… The ease with which Cyrus throws hip-hop under the bus validates every piece of criticism back when she first debuted her hip-hop persona.”
The dichotomy over black culture
Miley took her Instagram account to respond these criticisms. She pointed out to a possible misrepresentation of the interview and claimed she respects and appreciates all genres of music.
She also said that as she grows old she expands personally and musically. She highlighted the younger generations’ new to hear positive powerful lyrics and said how proud she’s to be an artist without borders and with the opportunity to explore new sound and styles.
It’s certainly true that an artist has the space to try new things, however, the thing is that there’s a stigma over black art made by black artists. Black art made by black people would be just as successful as the art made a white artist who’s “inspired” by it.
Black art made by black people would be just as successful as the art made a white artist who’s “inspired” by it, and it’s not the case, most times this is much more alluring when performed by white people.
Specifically, young star taking their turn into adult stars, which found in black culture a somehow rebel escape, which comes as the savior of their careers.The dichotomy over black culture love is quite exhausting, while the public loves some facets of black culture, black people remain holding absurd prejudices about who they are.
Above all, artists should respect the culture is taking inspiration from, and not belittle it to some sort of stereotypes.
When articles are read it isn't always considered that for hours I've spoken with a journalist about my life , where my heart is, my perspective at that time, and the next step in my career. Unfortunately only a portion of that interview makes it to print, & A lot of the time publications like to focus on the most sensationalized part of the conversation. So, to be clear I respect ALL artists who speak their truth and appreciate ALL genres of music (country , pop , alternative …. but in this particular interview I was asked about rap) I have always and will continue to love and celebrate hip hop as I've collaborated with some of the very best! At this point in my life I am expanding personally/musically and gravitating more towards uplifting, conscious rap! As I get older I understand the effect music has on the world & Seeing where we are today I feel the younger generation needs to hear positive powerful lyrics! I am proud to be an artist with out borders and thankful for the opportunity to explore so many different styles/ sounds! I hope my words (sung or spoken) always encourage others to LOVE…. Laugh…. Live fully…. to be there for one another… to unify, and to fight for what's right (human , animal , or environmental ) Sending peace to all! Look forward to sharing my new tunes with you soon! – MC
Source: Teen Vogue