Eric Benét stopped by TMZ and said today’s R&B music has been whitewashed. He shared that opinion after host Van Lathan asked him if R&B music is dying out.
“The artform that I fell in love with is not dying, it’s still there,” said Benét. “It seems like they want to hear it, but they want to hear it more if it’s not from Black people.”
“Why is it genius when they do it?” he asked. “Listen to Kenny Lattimore’s latest record and it’s like ‘Wow, that’s dope.’ But if it was a white cat that came out with that record he’d be at the Grammys. That’s always been how the music industry has been since Elvis on.”
Benét joins other artists who’ve said something similar about R&B music.
Back in November, Tyrese blasted pop stations for playing white R&B artists but not Black ones. He also asked why his song “Shame” with Jennifer Hudson didn’t get played on Ryan Seacrest’s KISS FM show, because if Robin Thicke would’ve had a song with Hudson things would’ve been different.
In fact, Stephanie Mills said the same thing during an interview last year.
“I think they want R&B, but they don’t want it from us,” she stated. “They want it from Adele and Justin Timberlake and those people. Kenny Lattimore had a wonderful album [but it didn’t get a lot of attention].”
Before Benét’s take on today’s R&B music, he also shared his opinion on hip-hop and said rappers who only talk about murder, drugs and misogyny are the same as white supremacists.
“If all you rap about is killing Black people, degrading Black women, abusing drugs, materialization, living a low life, you are not a artist, you are a Black face for white supremacy,” he wrote. “You are being used to help destroy your own people.”
Afterwards, people like Wale responded, who seemed to agree with the singer but only partially.
“Hip-hop always had an affinity for material things,” he wrote. “It’s a part of the very fabric but does not define the players in said genre. He got a point, but it’s not the only point.”
Fat Joe responded as well and said rap shouldn’t be taken so seriously. He also said the blame should be placed on whoever takes the songs literally.
“I view music as entertainment,” Joe explained. “You have different rappers for different messages. If you gonna go and live your life behind a rap song then you’re the fool. We make gangsta rap. People work out to it. People in the army, navy, fighting wars, they get hype to our sh–. I don’t know what he’s talking about. It’s a shame. I love Eric Benét.”
Benét’ hasn’t responded to Fat Joe or Wale yet, but you can see him talk about R&B music below.