Wale’s stance about how his dark skin and other rapper’s light skin has affected their musical success hasn’t changed since he last spoke on it. And he was asked to break things down again in a recent interview.
During a Q&A back in May, a fan asked the rapper did his “expressive passion for the music hurt/prevent you from being mentioned with the rest in your class?”
“It hurt me greatly,” the responded. “Also, me being dark-skinned (not half white) rapper, direct descent from Africa did too. But let’s not go there.”
At the time, many assumed he was talking about Drake or his pal J. Cole, both of whom have seen major success from their albums.
When asked about the reply on “The Breakfast Club” Monday, June 18, Wale maintained his original answer.
“Racial ambiguity helps in anything in America. That’s just what it is,” he says. “Probably except for sports. Racial ambiguity helps at some level. But racial ambiguity just helps … Even in acting, you can play Italian, Greek, this, that. If you’re Black you’re just Black, Jamaican, African, maybe. Racial ambiguity just helps.
“It could be for a lot of reasons,” he continued. “It could be because ‘Hey I’m … Middle Eastern with curly hair and when I cut it I look like Drake so I can relate.’ ‘Oh I’m biracial I look like this guy or whatever.’ ‘Oh, I’m white, I relate to some of him and what he’s saying.’ I didn’t mean it like the world is racist. I’m just saying like racial ambiguity helps a lot. … It’s a benefit, I think.”
The comment left many fans with varying feelings.
“Wale is a 🤡, I had to turn off that ‘Beakfast Club’ interview after he said he might not be poppin’ because he’s dark skin 🤦🏾♂️.”
“Wale be coming up with hella excuses as to why his music isn’t doing numbers… now it’s his dark skin 😒.”
“Wale said he ain’t super pop cause he dark skin. Fam…Your music weak. Lil Wayne dark skin fam.”
“Wale allegedly said his music don’t get played and he isn’t taken seriously because he’s dark-skinned. I actually like Wale’s music and I know race is a sensitive issue…But I’m tryna see how him being dark skin is holding his music back.🤷🏽♀️”
But singer V. Bozeman understood Wale’s point.
“I’ma say it and I agree with Wale … Racial ambiguity does help,” she says. “Stop acting like y’all don’t know what’s going on in these streets. The light skin, the dark skin, that’s a whole situation. … It’s a whole different experience with that situation, with the light skin and the dark-skinned. It’s been goin’ on since the beginning of time.”
Several fans agreed while others didn’t.
“Well said Lil Sister people just want to keep the blinders on to a whole lot of stuff.”
“I definitely agree with you Queen💯💯💯.”
“Girl, you still didn’t explain how this is true for wale, a dark skin man who raps. Speak to him specifically. His identity. All you did was project.”
“When they career not successful they blame it on race. Not saying it don’t happen but for real now.”