Singer Lana Del Rey has yet again found herself in the crossfire of racial controversy after defending her latest album cover’s lack of apparent diversity with her history of dating and befriending “rappers.”
At first glance her “Chemtrails Over the Country Club” album simply looks like a photo of mostly white women draped in vintage linen dresses at a picnic table. At second glance the only question fans had about the artwork on IG was whether or not it is the best photo to encapsulate the 11 songs.
But before the “Young and Beautiful” singer could be hit with backlash she jumped in her own comments to explain the photo.
“I also want to say that with everything going on this year! And no this was not intended — these are my best friends, since you are asking today. And damn! As it happens when it comes to my amazing friends and this cover yes there are people of color on this record’s picture and that’s all I’ll say about that but thank you,” wrote Rey, but she was far from done.
She continued, “My beautiful friend Valerie from Del Rio Mexico, my dearest friend Alex and my gorgeous friend Dakota Rain as well as my sweetheart Tatiana. There are my friends this is my life. We are all a beautiful mix of everything — some more than others which is visible and celebrated in everything I do. In 11 years working I have always been extremely inclusive without even trying to. My best friends are rappers my boyfriends have been rappers. My dearest friends have been from all over the place, so before you make comments again about WOC/POC issue, I’m not the one storming the capitol, I’m literally changing the world by putting my life and thoughts and love out there on the table 24 seven. Respect it.”
She was immediately condemned for a racially insensitive tone that did little to prove she understands the difference between ethnicity and a stereotype.
“The fact that you think ‘rapper’ equates to a ‘POC’ is the real issue here Karen.”
“When you refer to Black people you need to say Black not rappers.”
“For real, I physically cringed reading that.”
For at least one person the incident was reminiscent of last year’s rant where Rey criticized Beyoncé, Nicki Minaj and others for being applauded for their sex appeal and songs about cheating.
“I’m fed up with female writers and alt singers saying that I glamorize abuse when in reality I’m just a glamorous person singing about the realities of what we are all now seeing,” wrote Rey on social in May 2020.
“She dug her own hole just like she did last year with that wack a** rant about Doja Cat and Beyonce,” commented one person drawing the comparison.