Grammy Award-winning singer India.Arie appears to have reignited her feud with Spotify after the streaming platform placed a photo of a white woman on the cover art for her single “Brown Skin.”
In a heated message posted to her Instagram Stories, the neo-soul songwriter exposed the streamer for the error, writing, “And you wonder why we hate Spotify. I’m on a playlist called I love my Neo soul, and this white lady is the picture they put for my song Brown Skin. I have no words.” At the time of this reporting, it appeared to be one song, “Brown Skin” by India.Arie that used the photo.
The 47-year-old musician referenced her former qualms with the platform, stating, “When I stood up to Spotify nobody stood with me.” She added, “When I try to accept that this is the way the business is / they do sh–t like THIS.” The veteran songstress continued, “Everybody loves black music, but they don’t care about US as people. Cause THIS RIGHT HERE IS A BLATANT SLAP IN THE FACE. AGAIN.”
India aired her frustrations stating that she’s “tried for 2 DECADES thru my music to Help humanity to remember love. To love Black people OUT LOUD. And to just be a force [of] good,” before adding that she “was COMPLETELY COMMITTED WITH ALL OF MY LIFE FORCE.” “HOW IS THIS … where we are now?” the “Steady Love” singer questioned.
The musician even appeared to get ahead of any potential criticisms she may be met with, adding, “and before any [one] talks s–t to me. I don’t care. If you’ve never been in this world–your opinions mean nothing to me.”
India claimed that because many artists heavily rely on Spotify, the platform is seemingly taking advantage. “That’s why they don’t HAVE to treat us well,” she alleged. The singer concluded her message and her mission to seek change in a very complex industry.
“I do so much of this [without] a proper team,” she explained. “Smh. I’m tired. LOL! I’m done trying to make a change for all of us. I’m going to focus [on] me and my wellness.”
Fans were equally upset and rushed to the singer’s defense, including one user who wrote “They wanna be us, but don’t want what comes with being ‘us’.” Another supporter quipped, “Now why is Karen’s daughter Katie on that cover.” A third commented, “I really feel like they do this s–t on purpose ’cause ain’t no way…”
Earlier this year, India.Arie was at odds with Spotify and even threatened to boycott and remove her discography from the platform after controversial podcaster Joe Rogan made many ill-informed comments about race and the COVID pandemic on his show.
She also took issue with the host’s usage of the N-word. During a conversation with CNN’s Don Lemon on his nightly show, the singer admitted she didn’t think Joe “is racist for using the N-word. I think he’s insensitive for using it. So just don’t.”
The podcaster ultimately apologized, and the singer accepted, sharing, “I have to say, I did think he did a fine job with his apology.” She added, “He said a lot of the things I would want to hear someone say. The thing that stuck out for me most was when he said, ‘It’s not my word to use.’ And I think changed behavior is what we’re really looking for.”