"Some of these music blogs could actually benefit from hiring people who REALLY understand the culture of R&B to write about R&B. Some of these music blogs could actually benefit from hiring people who REALLY understand the culture of hip hop to write about hip hop. Like you really should know about deep Brandy album cuts before you are giving a “grade” or a “score” to any R&B artist. And ivy league credentials don’t give you any insight on “grading” a rapper’s body of work…when you’ve had no access to the REAL culture. There are SO many gifted writers who truly understand. Who didn’t get hip to R&B & Hip-Hop via the crossover artist of their childhood. Just hire them please, so you can stop insulting peeps’ knowledge. So you can stop acting like it just popped off last year for R&B. Like it just got interesting and experimental. So you can stop praising every rapper who raps over a trap beat, but can’t form literate sentences and then you market it as some hip shit. And that wasn’t a rant. It was an observation and a request."
— Solange Knowles
Please school these children Solange. (This was taken from tweets that she shared this morning.) I cannot think of anything more irritating and reprehensible than having cultural writers write about something they know little of, and having some abstractly-related degrees as “proof” of their qualifications. And to be clear, no shade on formal education. I have 3 college degrees. The point is, having them does not make me an expert on something as intricate as Black music MORE than the experience of listening, studying and embracing (and for some people, creating) said music LONG before said music reaches the final stage of the cycle of cultural appropriation when (primarily White) people deem it “acceptable” and “mainstream.”