It appears many industry companies are following the advice of Republic records and abandoning the word “Urban” as some form of solidarity with Black Industry people sans our permission or approval of course. I have talked to very few black people who see the benefit UNLESS “urban” is replaced with Black. But I’m not seeing any replacement word just the removal altogether.
Otherwise it’s just Hip Hop and R&B which actually opens up the genres to include anyone and everyone (just wait and see how people get pissed about the music award shows in the near future)
Urban radio is struggling for an identity right now and in the process, iHeart just created an all-Black News Network, something a black industry company could have created in their sleep but failed to do so. If iHeart, truly the most innovative media corporation in the industry, is unafraid to call it the “Black Information Network” why should urban stations be afraid (or ashamed) to be called “Black Radio Stations.”
Black music contributions are way beyond R&B and Hip Hop, there’s Jazz, Blues and many other genres that we created but were seldom credited for and should be able to claim. There is nothing wrong with that.
Black radio was shunned by advertising companies who didn’t want to promote their client’s products on “Black” stations in the 60s thru the 90s forcing many Black stations to water down their identities and completely removing the word “Black” from all aspects of the station. This included Black talk shows and Black news. Now Black news has returned and will most likely fill many AM formats. What are urban radio stations going to do if?
As we witness the power of the word “Black” WORLDWIDE why shouldn’t we take advantage of the opportunity to identify ourselves instead of letting other people do it as w have in the past? Don’t you find it strange that as the world is moving CLOSER to the word and concept of “Black” several companies in the industry are trying to move AWAY from it? Right now, we have no competition and many people are still confused about the “Rhytmic” format, still wondering what the hell that is? Finally, what are we going to do in our moment of strength? Get stronger or remain invisible?
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