Racialicious is a blog about the intersection of race and pop culture. Check out our updates on the latest celebrity gaffes, our no-holds-barred critique of questionable media representations. If you've been on the blog, you know how this Tumblr works, too. Including the moderation policy.
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Posts tagged "music"


The Tennessee singer’s keening soprano shows off its twang, yet sounds totally contemporary. As she ranges across many musical paths — country blues, fiery hymns and more — Valerie June is careful to keep returning home to storytelling with just a few simple words and an acoustic guitar.

Stream Pushin’ Against a Stone now.

(via blackrockandrollmusic)



(via seanpadilla)


Stop everything you’re doing and watch this right now. Trust me.

Aaaaaaaannnnd scene!

One more for the first official weekend of summer: this week’s Racialicious Crush, Unlocking The Truth, doing a Hendrix-worthy version of “The Star Spangled Banner.”

Enjoy your weekend!!

Y’all, just found out about MIA’s latest cut a few minutes ago from the AfroPunk’s FB page

Some fun for your Monday!


British-Somali songwriter, feminist, and musician Marianne Joan Elliott-Said, also known by her stage name Poly Styrene, is most notably known for being the founder of punk rock band X-Ray Spex.

She was born in Bromley, London, and ran away from home at the age of 15 with just £3 in her pocket, hitchhiking from one music festival to another. This adventure ended when she stepped on a rusty nail while bathing in a stream and had to be treated for septicaemia.

After seeing the Sex Pistols performance at the Pier Pavillion Hastings on her 19th birthday she thought that anyone could do what they were doing and so decided to form her own Punk Rock band, putting an ad in the paper calling for ‘young punx who want to stick it together’, and that was the beginning of X-Ray Spex. She eventually became a passionate feminist and posted a blog dedicated to women’s rights and defense of women.

She was described by Billboard as the “archetype for the modern-day feminist punk”; because she wore dental braces, stood against the typical sex object female of 1970’s rock star, sported a gaudy Dayglo wardrobe, and was of mixed race. She was “one of the least conventional front-persons in rock history, male or female”.

Needless to say, she was a total bad ass.

idg why this post doesn’t have more notes


it’s poly fucking styrene omg

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Celia Cruz, La Reina 

(via missturman)

Morrissey doesn’t make himself easy to like, and has proved to be as deft at writing catchy, literate indie-pop songs as he is at erecting barriers that prevent the unqualified enjoyment of those songs. He’s egregiously precious and oversensitive, and has a tendency to come off in interviews as self-important, vain, and smug. He’s a vocal advocate for animal rights, but perhaps too vocal. His passion for protecting all God’s creatures is an admirable one, but the rigid, bratty way he tends to express that passion represents the type of myopic zealotry that stunts movements more often than it fortifies them.

I could accept all of this, though, if it weren’t for the fact that Morrissey is also probably racist. I say probably for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is that Morrissey is not at all shy about litigation where such accusations are concerned. Added to this, as with any damaging rumor that shadows a celebrity, Morrissey’s alleged racism is a conjecture built of equal parts fact, perception, and apocrypha. But in spite of his insistence that he isn’t racist, an assertion he’s repeated over the years, no one has done more to make the case that Morrissey is deeply racist and xenophobic than the man himself.

Take, for example, his 2010 interview with The Guardian, in which he mentioned his feelings about news reports detailing the treatment of animals in Chinese circuses and zoos: “You can’t help but feel that the Chinese are a subspecies,” he said. That comment was so indefensible and so vile that the British anti-racism group Love Music Hate Racism announced it would no longer accept money from the singer, who in 2007 gave the organization a large cash donation to demonstrate his non-bigot bona fides after making similarly disturbing comments in an interview with NME. “With the issue of immigration, it’s very difficult because, although I don’t have anything against people from other countries, the higher the influx into England, the more the British identity disappears,” goes the NME quote.

Before these instances, Morrissey’s defenders had much more to work with. There was the argument that the questionable lyrics of his songs “Asian Rut” and “Bengali in Platforms” were merely examples of a body of songs that includes many skewed views of provocative characters, such as the congenitally deformed woman in “November Spawned a Monster” or the violent stepchild in “The Father Who Must Be Killed.” There’s also the fact that Morrissey was so offended by NME’s 2007 story, he alleged its writer had spliced quotes together and sued the magazine to clear his name, ultimately settling out of court after the magazine agreed to print an apology and retraction. “I abhor racism and oppression or cruelty of any kind and will not let this pass without being absolutely clear and emphatic with regard to what my position is,” said Morrissey in a statement related to the NME fracas. “Racism is beyond common sense and I believe it has no place in our society.”

As comforting a balm as statements such as these have been to Morrissey’s fan base over the years, it’s beyond my common sense to total all of the evidence and conclude that Morrissey is simply misunderstood. If I had to guess, I would say that Morrissey holds some absolutely repugnant views, and attempts to keep them hidden for fear of alienating his fan base and destroying his career. I also believe that’s partly the reason he’s notoriously press-shy; the ratio of interviews in which he’s made sickening comments to the relatively small number of interviews he’s done suggests that he probably says many indefensible things, and it’s just a matter of whether a tape recorder happens to be nearby to capture it.

Joshua Alston, “Confessions Of A Black Morrissey Fan,” The Feminist Wire 3/21/13 

Sending you off into your weekend with the incredible DJ collective A Tribe Called Red, who, according to Colorlines’ Jorge Rivas, are playing SXSW this weekend