The issue of colorism has been a hot topic in the Hip Hop community recently after Tory Lanez called out a director for allegedly swapping out a dark skin model for a light skin model in his music video.
Matthew Knowles recently stopped by Clay Cane on SiriusXM Urban View on Tuesday and their chat included the subject of colorism.
Knowles, who is the father of Beyoncé and Solange, was instrumental in the early success of Destiny’s Child. Therefore, he has been in the game for a while and knows a thing or two.
The host shared that his Texas Southern University students did a study that showed in a 15-year period, Top 40 airplay artists who were black women were all lighter-skinned. This list included Alicia Keys, Nicki Minaj, Rihanna, Mariah Carey, and Beyoncé.
“In the music industry, there’s still segregation, as you know,” Knowles said. “There used to be the black division, race records and programmers, especially at pop radio, has this imagery of what beauty looks like. They wanted that imagery to be the same that’s singing those records. If you look back, even like Whitney Houston, if you look at those photos, how they lighten her to make her look lighter complexion because there’s a perception in colorism…the lighter you are the smarter, the more economically… all around the world about color, even with black folks, there’s a perception.”
“How different do you think Beyoncé’s career would have been if she were a darker skinned woman?” Cane asked.
“I think it would have affected her success. I use Kelly Rowland [as] a great example,” Knowles responded. “The great thing is Kelly did exceptional outside of America, especially in Australia. Kelly sold over 4 million records.”
Check out the full interview with Matthew Knowles below: