In the piece published last week, Kravitz revealed that he has yet to be invited to “a BET thing or a Source Awards thing.”
“And it’s like, here is a Black artist who has reintroduced many Black art forms, who has broken down barriers — just like those that came before me broke down."
"That is positive. And they don’t have anything to say about it?”
He also expressed his confusion over why his success “is not celebrated by the folks who run those publications or organizations."
"I have been that dream and example of what a Black artist can do.”
After Kravitz's remarks were published, many involved with Black media outlets spoke out, some even writing pieces on the topic.
Michael Harriot wrote an opinion piece for The Grio, that stated:
“Having worked in Black media for most of my career, I can assure you that there is not a single Black-centric outlet that would reject Kravitz if he wanted to appear at one of these celebrations."
“Most Black publications would kill for an exclusive interview with someone like Kravitz. Most of the platforms he references have published stories on the Black origins of rock and roll. I know because I have written some of them.”
Given the interpretation and subsequent backlash following his comments, Kravitz shared a statement on X that read:
"It's important to me to set the record straight on recent media reports based on an interview I did."
“My Black musical heritage means a lot to me, and I owe my success to my supporters who have taken this journey with me over the span of my career."
He explained that his comment was "specifically referring to Black award shows in particular.”
"The comment was meant to express a concern about ensuring that Black artists are being recognized for their work in what is now being called 'non-traditional' Black music, which it is not."
"Rock and roll is the music we were instrumental in creating and is a part of our history. We must retain our heritage and celebrate that together."
Kravitz finished by recognizing the impact BET and "countless others" have made.
"BET and countless others have paved the way for this type of recognition. I hope that by sharing my concern a spotlight will be shone on this issue."
He signed off:
"Love and peace."
People on social media appreciated Kravitz taking the time to clarify his comments and were in agreement with his message.
@LennyKravitz I 100 % agree. \nWe must not lose the roots of rock and roll music, by exclusion of one genre, that may not fit the more mainstream,\u201cR&B or HipHop\u201d genres seen as Black Music. \nI\u2019m from Louisiana, where Jazz, Blues, and Rock roots are in the African American diaspora\u2019s genesis.— (@)
Many, however, felt no explanation was necessary.
@LennyKravitz Those of us in the Black Community who have consistently purchased your albums and supported your work were not offended. We, too, question why we haven't seen your talents showcased in black award spaces. We've always loved you and we shall continue, regardless of the accolades.— (@)
@LennyKravitz Bruh, \n\nYou didn't have to clear up A DAMN THING!!!\nThose of US Black Folks who listen to Music outside of the garbage that passes for Black (Popular) Music these days know the deal.\n\nYou continued on a Music path WE practically created.\nMuch Respect.\nKeep doing what You're doing— (@)
@LennyKravitz Lenny, I\u2019d read the article and your intention seemed quite clear and understandable. I firmly believe some people \u201cfaux misinterpret\u201d information to create a self-serving narrative. You have been honest and non problematic as far as this fan sees. Rock on \ud83e\udd18\ud83c\udffe— (@)
It's certainly commendable on his part to address the backlash and clarify his statements.
Well done, Lenny.