Gay singer MNEK says music industry is segregated

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English singer-songwriter MNEK, who is black and gay, says that the music industry treats his race and sexuality as obstacles to accept his creativity. Speaking to Billboard, MNEK said that there is “a long way to go” in improving opportunities for queer musicians in the industry, especially if they also happen to be people of color. “I don’t want to blame anything on racism or homophobia, but there’s a lot of segregation that what I do comes with,” he said.He released his debut album, Language, two weeks ago, but has been working in a music industry as a singer and songwriter for more than a decade. “[The listeners] are used to seeing quite heteronormative ideals from pop stars, male and female, and so when it’s someone who straddles the line or does something different, yeah, it can be looked at as wrong, which it isn’t, of course,” he noted, confessing that he often has to replace every ‘he’ in his songs into ‘she’ just for the song to reach the audience.

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