Cheryl’s controversial R&B podcast has continued to face scrutiny from figures in the entertainment industry, with Game of Thrones actress Nathalie Emmanuel, comedian Gina Yashere and TV presenter Trisha Goddard among those criticising.
The former Girls Aloud singer has hosted a BBC Sounds show titled You, Me & R&B, which is described as a ‘passionate love letter’ to the genre.
However, Cheryl has faced backlash for being a pop singer who has never recorded an R&B or soulful song throughout her career, with critics arguing the position should have been given to a Black R&B singer.
Without naming the pop star directly, GoT actress Nathalie appeared to address the controversy in a tweet, which said: ‘Like RnB music hasn’t been appropriated enough… Had it’s narrative controlled over and over by those who weren’t the originators.
‘Like we don’t have incredible, iconic Black British RnB talent & creators… but they won’t get a platform like this…. Because… well we know why.’
Comedian Gina, who is from the UK but now lives in the US, shared her thoughts on the situation in an Instagram video.
She said: ‘It’s come to my attention that Cheryl Tweedy has been given an R&B radio show.
‘For Americans, this woman was a member of a band called Girls Aloud, you know what, I don’t even know why I’m calling them a band, they’re not a band, they’re a bunch of mediocre girls thrown together who can’t play a flute, a trumpet or a ukelele or a didgeridoo between them.
‘… They were famous for making bubblegum pop. This is the woman that they’ve chosen to give an R&B radio show to because they couldn’t find any Black R&B singers, any Black woman that could have done that job.’
‘No Beverly Knight, no Micha Paris, no Emeli Sande, no Estelle, no Jamelia. We have a myriad of Black women who actually make R&B, who actually know R&B.’
The comic continued: ‘This is why we need more Black people in the higher echelons of the organisations making decisions because you know damn well there’s no Black person in that room when that decision was made.
‘That is like giving Piers Morgan a feminist podcast or making the BNP head of hip hop. Who is making these f*****g decisions? This is why when these companies come out with these statements of diversity and inclusion and erasing the injustices of the past, I take it with a pinch of salt because it’s just lip service.
‘They’re just trying to stay relevant by saying the right things at the right time.’
In her caption, Gina added: ‘And I’d say @cherylofficial should do the right thing and step her ass down but the force-field of white privilege is too strong.
Daytime TV icon Trisha agreed with Gina’s sentiments and commented: ‘Absolute f**kwittery!’
BBC Radio 1Xtra presenter Nadia Jae also weighed in: ‘Thank you to the UK/US R&B artists who send me their music for @nadiajaernbchill and those who listen on radio 1 relax and 1xtra. It’s the highest listened to R&B playlist on Sounds. Real ones know.’
Comedian London Hughes had tweeted earlier in the week: ‘I’m not sure why some of you are shocked that Cheryl Cole is doing an ‘Rnb’ podcast, when the biggest soulful singer that we have in the UK is Adele. White women have always been allowed to take up space in UK ‘Black music’ Word to Rita Ora, Jess Glynne, Jessie J, Joss Stone etc.
‘There was a time in UK music in the 2010’s where every song you heard on the radio that sounded like a soulful Black woman…. Was in-fact a cute skinny white girl from Essex.
‘Sorry but due to systemic racism the UK music scene doesn’t have its own Beyoncé’s, Rihanna’s, Whitney Houston’s, Mary J Blige’s, Diana Ross’s, Janelle Monet’s, Normani’s or Dionne Warwick’s… So until then, you’re getting this Rhythm & Blues brought to you by Cheryl Cole.’
A BBC spokesperson addressed the controversy when previously approached by Metro.co.uk, and said: ‘We feature a wide range of voices spanning different genres across our extensive music output. Many of our shows are fronted by DJs who are experts in their fields, others are hosted by people with a passion for their topic.
‘Cheryl’s You, Me and R&B shares personal stories from her youth, soundtracked by her favourite genre.’
Credit: Original article published here.