Mathew Knowles Talks Colorism in Music and How His Daughters Beyonce & Solange Benefits

Mathew Knowles is currently on a promotional tour to support his new book, Racism: From the Eyes of a Child, where he speaks candidly about race relations while growing up in the deep South.

One of the many perplexities he faced while growing up was colorism, a movement that’s still prevalent in today’s social climate.

“When I was growing up, my mother used to say, “Don’t ever bring no nappy-head Black girl to my house.” In the deep South in the ’50s, ’60s, ’70s, the shade of your Blackness was considered important. So I, unfortunately, grew up hearing that message,” Knowles told Ebony.

He continued: “…I talk about going to therapy and sharing–one day I had a breakthrough–that I used to date mainly White women or very high-complexion Black women that looked White. I actually thought when I met Tina, my former wife, that she was White. Later I found out that she wasn’t, and she was actually very much in-tune with her Blackness.”

“I had been conditioned from childhood. With eroticized rage, there was actual rage in me as a Black man, and I saw the White female as a way, subconsciously, of getting even or getting back. There are a lot of Black men of my era that are not aware of this thing.”

Knowles also went a bit further by implying that his daughters Beyonce and Solange garnered their notoriety because of the color of their skin.

She added: “When it comes to Black females, who are the people who get their music played on pop radio? Mariah Carey, Rihanna, the female rapper Nicki Minaj, my kids [Beyonce and Solange], and what do they all have in common?”

The interviewer Jessica Bennett replied, “They’re all lighter skinned,” to which he adds, “Do you think that’s an accident?” She answered, “Of course not!,” to which he concludes, “So you get it!”

Do you think Beyonce would be as famous if she were darker skinned? Do you agree with her father?


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