Music

A Brief History Of Solange Knowles Speaking Her Mind

Solange has never shied away from expressing herself, but until now, it usually hasn’t gotten physical.

1. August 2008 — Shutting down local news

“I have to say, that was not a very professional introduction before. Please don’t tie me into family and my brother-in-law’s establishment,” Solange said on television while promoting her second solo LP, Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams, after an interviewer mentioned a controversy surrounding Jay Z’s 40-40 club.

2. October 2010 — Calling out Katy Perry for “polluting” kids

Michael Buckner / Getty

“Seriously, [sic] Iontlike the fact dat Julez thinks he gotta sneak watched ‘California Gurls’ on u Tube. Katy Perry is polluting the chirrens,” Solange tweeted. “It is like kiddie porn tho. All them damn colors, candy and shit….and then daisy dukes, breast shooting cream…”

3. January 2011 — Speaking out against Beyoncé pregnancy deniers

Craig Barritt / Getty

Just a couple days after Blue Ivy’s birth, Solange defended her sister’s privacy: “It has really gotten out of hand. I’ve been doing my best at keeping my mouth shut… but the ignorance is really sad and upsetting… We are supposed to be super human and watch people we love get slandered, lied on, and ridiculed. It is one of THE hardest things to accept.”

4. August 2011 — The Miami banana incident

Thinkstockphotos

“I have literally had my last leg with discriminating police!” Solange wrote on Twitter after being denied entrance to a club in Miami while holding a big inflatable banana. “Miami police department will be notified… A police officer just pulled a weapon on me… I have done NOTHING illegal, against the law, or anything of the sort,” she continued, in a series of since-deleted tweets. “I could have left quietly, but I am sick & tired of this scenario being played over & over again. It is time to do something about it. I am a mother raising a young black child in America. I’m going to die trying!”

A rep said Solange was filing a police report, while Miami police denied wrongdoing or that a weapon was pulled.

“We have investigated and found that this incident did not occur in our city,” Miami Police Department spokesman Delrish Moss said in a written statement.

5. June 2012 — Expressing disdain for the “Natural Hair police”

After natural hair advocates criticized her “unkempt” hair, Solange wrote on Twitter: “I’ve never painted myself as team natural vice president. I don’t know the lingo and I don’t sleep with a satin cap… My hair is not very important to me…so i don’t encourage it to be important to you… I don’t want to talk about no damn hair… no mo…Just having a moment to express my disdain for the Natural Hair police of the world.”

6. November 2012 — Discrim-FRO-nation

Terrible Records

“My hair is not a storage drawer,” Solange wrote after her afro was searched by the Transportation Security Administration in Miami.

7. January 2013 — #DeepBrandyAlbumCuts

Hulton Archives / Getty

In a series of nine tweets, Solange expressed frustration with music critics who acted like R&B “just popped off last year.” She continued: “Some of these music blogs could actually benefit from hiring people who REALLY understand the culture of R&B to write about R&B. Like you really should know about deep Brandy album cuts before you are giving a ‘grade’ or a ‘score’ to any R&B artists… ivy league credentials don’t give you any insight on ‘grading’ a rappers body of work…when you’ve had no access to the REAL culture.”

Her comments sparked a conversation about how white critics cover black music.

8. April 2013 — No one’s “vocal muse”

How can one be a "vocal muse" to their own melodies ,story telling, and words they wrote?

— solangeknowles (@solange knowles)

“Y’all got it all the way wrong. Ive been writing and producing my own voice since 02, nigga … I find it very disappointing when I am presented as the ‘face’ of my music, or a ‘vocal muse’ when I write or co-write every fucking song … Sexism in the industry ain’t nothing new,” Solange wrote on Twitter, seemingly in response to how she thought Pitchfork depicted producer and writer Dev Hynes’ role in her True EP, which included this statement: “Hynes has met an ideal female vocal muse in Solange.”

10. October 2013 — Putting Instagram trolls on blast

In an interview with Concrete Loop, the singer explained that she left Instagram after commenters slammed pictures of her son, Juelz:

“One of the reasons I went off of Instagram — because I was on there for a little while — is because, you know, I would post pictures of my son or my friends, and they’d be criticized. My whole thing is that I’m completely, fully capable of handling negativity for myself. But to put that kind of access to negativity behind people who didn’t even ask for it was really troubling to me.” (She has since returned to the platform.)

11. September 2013 — Subtweeting Miley Cyrus’ VMA performance

13. November 2013 — Addressing Dev Hynes’ comments about their friendship

After Dev Hynes, the songwriter and producer with whom she collaborated on True, wrote about their falling out on his Tumblr, Solange posted this string of tweets:

“When you do [a] tumblr post, speak about things in interviews, tweet, issues then belong to the public. I have been minding my biz… I have only ever praised you and spoken about you positively, even when our perspectives were totally different…I still support your artistry & am extremely happy for your success. I just wished you were honest about the making of my album… That’s all I’m going to say on this. You know more than anyone niggas love drama. Also u know very well I have reached out. Bless…Ps: Your phone been going straight to VM for long time.”

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