The Dream Responds: ‘Blacks Can’t Do Soul’ Taken Out of Context

For “the Special People,” The Dream has cleared up what has become one of his most controversial statements to date — “Blacks can’t do soul records anymore.”

“For the Special People “Yes, we can do Soul records!” The context is that we can’t do them and they be appreciated like they should!,” The Dream said via Twitter late Monday.

Following his statement that “blacks can’t do soul anymore,” which was said in an interview with UK’s The Guardian, music listeners either agreed with or criticized The Dream Monday. Some said he was right in saying Adele is praised for singing more soulful records while Beyonce is not. Others questioned his authority in making such a statement, considering the music he produces for ‘Black’ acts he says require a ‘club’ hit.

According to Terius Nash, aka The Dream, his argument boils down to appreciation. If music from Maxwell (“Pretty Wings,” “Bad Habit”), who he used as an example, was more appreciated, labels and other “powers that be” would accept and possibly push for more soulful music instead of that club record.

“When I was young I knew who Sam,Otis,Teddy…was, they were Gods in my home. Love,relationships real life sh*t! I can go on and on. All im Saying is when someone takes what we once did best and was widely excepted we act like its knew….. Labels tell artist all day “that’s too Slow for Pop Radio” and what happens somebody other than us does it and its okay,” says The Dream. “Do yall get it now ? Our albums are full of Dance and…..Someone else is doing the real heart sh*t. Maxwell does not get the credit he deserves because we don’t give him the credit he deserves…US!”

While The Dream has valid points, what about his music? Why is he producing songs some would say contribute to the problem? According to The Dream, he has no choice…

“I’ve took records of my own off of my albums because of a genuine feeling of “that’s not what we do anymore” not because I want to but….Because its the truth and I feel horrible about it. It sucks. I wish I had that type of a voice. I really do. I would show you,’ says The Dream. “My ability is limited in that space but that doesn’t mean that I don’t know what it sounds like. I Wish I was Sam Cooke for a Day. I Wish!”

So what do we get from all of this? Heartfelt, soulful music is being pushed aside for “numbers.”

“We Gave up the Power of a Beautiful heartfelt voice for numbers of albums Sold,” says The Dream. “So in order for certain artist to come out we do what is necessary instead of what we love. Fear of not having a number 1, not selling 500,000, not getting all the adds are the twisted reality of this business. But that FEAR is what actually hurts music the most. All we care about is first week! Not the vision. Not the people you touch one by one. What’s so Dope about that? Just make it Great! If the label let’s you…”

Now that we’re clear on what The Dream said, what do you think? Is he right?