Mathew Knowles says Beyoncé wouldn’t be as successful if she was a dark skin Black woman
The former Destiny's Child manager discussed racism in the music industry.
Mathew Knowles is at it again. Beyonce’s father has sparked conversation across social media with his latest comments about colorism in the entertainment business, using the members of Destiny’s Child as a prime example.
The famed music manager hit up SiriusXM’s “The Clay Cane Show” on Wednesday where he discussed racism in the music industry, and how it impacted the careers of his daughter and Kelly Rowland.
Knowles admits that Beyonce probably wouldn’t be the global superstar icon that she is today if her skin was a few shades darker, Variety reports.
“In the music industry there’s still segregation,” Knowles said. “Programmers, especially at pop radio, [have] this imagery of what beauty looks like. They wanted that imagery to be the same as singing those records.”
Knowles acknowledges that his daughter has benefited from colorism, but if she were a dark-skin woman, “I think it would have affected her success,” he added. He then compared Bey’s stardom to Rowland’s as a way to prove how colorism influences an artist’s success.
“I use Kelly Rowland as an example. She’s a great example,” he explained. “But you know, the great thing is Kelly did exceptional outside of America, especially in Australia. Kelly sold over four million records. She just got off script.”
Some of the artists who Knowles believes have benefited from their lighter skin includes Alicia Keys, Mariah Carey, Rihanna, Nicki Minaj and the late-great Whitney Houston.
“If you look back even at Whitney Houston, if you look at those photos, how they lightened her to make her look lighter-complexioned … Because there’s a perception and a colorism: the lighter that you are, the smarter and more economically (advantaged)… There’s a perception all around the world about color — even with black folks, there’s a perception,” said Knowles.
Earlier this year, Knowles spoke out about his own past experiences with colorism, The Washington Post reported. He admitted that growing up, he was taught to believe that light-skinned Black women were more desirable. He also viewed white women as a prize that he could use for “getting even or getting back” at the man.
“In the Deep South in the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s, the shade of your Blackness was considered important. So I, unfortunately, grew up hearing that message,” Knowles previously said.
Check out Matthew Knowles’ other comments about the shades of Blackness on “The Clay Cane Show” below.