Skip to comments.Is Adele “Black” Enough for the NAACP Image Awards?
Posted on 02/15/2012 1:22:44 PM PST by GSWarrior
According to the Web site for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), its mission is a simple yet noble one: to ensure the political, educational, social and economic equality of rights of all persons and to eliminate racial hatred and racial discrimination.
Elsewhere on the Web site, the NAACP offers a detailed description of its annual Image Awards: the nations premier multi-cultural awards show celebrating the outstanding achievements and performances of people of color in the arts (television, recording, literature, motion picture and writing and directing), as well as those individuals or groups who promote social justice through their creative endeavors.
Got that? Okay.
If those definitions hold, what, then, is a singer like Adele doing in a place like this, as a nominee at the 43rd Annual NAACP Image Awards?
She recently received two NAACP Image Award nominationsOustanding Song and Video for her massive No. 1 hit Someone Like Youand, presumably, she will be on hand to win or lose when the prizes are handed out on February 17, live on NBC. Naturally, controversyand publicityensued because unlike fellow multiple-nominee Beyoncé, Adele happens to be white.
But you already knew that. So what, exactly, does Adele or her music have to do with the advancement of colored people?
It makes one wonder who is on the NAACPs nominating committee and what their motives might be? Maybe collecting more press attention by inviting the best-selling artist of 2011 to the ceremony as a double nominee and stirring the controversy pot while theyre at it.
Or perhaps the Adele is the behind-the-scenes key to why the ceremony, which is normally broadcast on the Fox network, found a home this year on the considerably whiter NBC. It will air five days after the GRAMMYs, and if Adele is that evenings big winnerand we have every reason to expect her to beshell be the best bait to lure viewers to the Image Awards short of raising Michael Jackson from the dead and giving him a ticket to the event.
NBC will win, but artists who are truly representative of music of color wont. Unlike past British blue-eyed soul singers like George Michael and Lisa Stansfield, up to now, Adele hasnt even displayed any particularly powerful affinity to American black music (its telling that the artists she covered on her first two albums, 19 and 21, were Bob Dylan and the Cure), and although shes earned the respect of black performers (Jeremih, for one, has covered Rumour Has It live), its not like Adeles singles have been big hits on R&B radio.
Its a little absurd that she would make the Outstanding Video shortlist while Kelly Rowland, a black performer who had the best video of the year by anyone of any color, was left off for Motivation. Meanwhile, conspicuously absent from the list of nominees in the music categories: Rihanna, the top black female artist at the moment, whose music or whose, um, image, apparently, isnt black enough for NAACP recognition.
So why is Adeles? Shes a great singer, and she sings with great soul, but shes not a soul singer. There is a distinction, you know, and it has less to do with being a certain color than sounding a certain color. The late Teena Marie may have been white, but she was a soul singer right down to her core. Every note that comes out of Adeles mouth sounds like a gift from God, but theres no mistaking the color of the wrapping paper.
While Im not a genre purist, and I dont support musical segregation based on race, by its very definition, the NAACP is a segregationist organization. Not in a way that screams, Blacks only! but in a way that is meant to promote and advance minorities, people of color (which would include 2012 Image acting nominees Sandra Oh and Sofia Vergara). Theres no getting around that aspect of the NAACPits not written in stone, just into its name.
Maybe its time to rethink the acronym and what it stands for (it hasnt been okay to call blacks colored people in my lifetime), as well as defining the NAACPs purpose when it comes to the Image Awardss music categories and the need for them to begin with. It makes sense to honor minority actors in TV and film because they are largely overlooked at the Emmys and the Oscars. This year, the acting nominations for Emma Stone and Bryce Dallas Howard, both of whom are white, feel appropriate because The Help was a film that detailed the black-white experience in the Deep South of the 1960s, and of the principal cast, theyre the two who were left out of the Oscar discussionand nominations.
But mainstream music award shows already do a pretty good job of honoring and featuring black talent. And its not like Adele isnt going to get her due everywhere else. Do we need to add the Image Awards to the list of Adele-propping organizations? Arent all of those GRAMMYs shes destined to win on February 12 enough?
One could argue that the NAACP Image Awards isnt even seriously dedicated to advancing or celebrating black music. What else would explain the absence of a category to honor rap, the premiere black musical art form in 2012? This means Adele is nominated and not Nicki Minaj, a popular rapper who is possibly the best role model on the charts today.
If image were the primary concern, and one would expect it to be with an Image award, Minajs is more than worthy of merit. She has done as much as anyone to bridge genres and color-based demographics. Her biggest hit, Super Bass, received some of its earliest praise from Taylor Swift and Selena Gomez, and shes collaborated with artists as variedand whiteas Eminem, Natasha Bedingfield, David Guetta, Christina Aguilera, Britney Spears, Ke$ha, the Lonely Island and Madonna. Minaj also has been as much of an advocate for gay rights as Lady Gaga without being patronizing about it. Meanwhile, Adele collects accolade after accolade and basks in the glow of her spotlight.
Im not saying that Adele doesnt deserve everything shes gotten. She doeswith the exception of this. If she wins either of the Image awards shes nominated forand considering how weak the Outstanding Video category is, how could she not?in what way will that be advancing people of color, or their music?
You can bet if Adele does win Outstanding Video, Kanye will make another appearance onstage.
Is Adele racist enough to even attend a race based awards ceremony?
I could careless what the racist socialist liberal marxist NAACP does, or says.............
I forgot about that.
If Adele is black, then so is, like, everybody on earth, including Norwegians.
I hope she dedicates it to all the white people.
Who would want an award given by the Klan With a Tan?
The writer is so spot on about calling blacks “colored” people. that is just so politically incorrect. It was a term used by uppity white women referring to the hired help.
But they’ll not change the acronym NAACP because it’s how they do. Once upon a time the NAACP was a noble organization, the creation of Martin Luther King, he who had a dream that all people would be recognized not for the color of their skin but the strength of their character.
Nowadays glory-seekers like Rev. Al and Jesse Jackson use this organization to jump on the good intentions created by MLK though the strength of someone’s character matters not a whit to them.
It’s how liberals do....they take something that was once respected and revered then use it to squeeze out all that they can for less than noble reasons.
It’s why they want to change the word “abortion” to contraception. Because when they start losing, they start changing words.
All the while peeing upon our feet and telling us it’s raining.
Martin King created the NAACP in 1909, decades before his birth?
The rookie Hussein isn't.
well I guess I’m wrong.
I do know that this organization grew under his tutelage.
But you caught me. I really thought he started it.
I said a whole lot more in my comment, kind of insightful stuff, but you caught me.
Yes you did.
You were also wrong about “colored” being mainly used by “uppity white women” addressing their help, what ever “uppity white women” are.
So glad I have you to tell me how things are.
I stand by what I said. Your mileage may vary. It’s how this forum works.
It’s not the skin color, it’s the amount of body fat.
Well you thought MLK created the NAACP, and you seem to be racist, against “uppity white women”, I had to correct you.
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