Solange bites the hand that feeds, among other things

Beyoncé’s little sister harbors resentment over racially insensitive remark by New York Times writer Jon Caramanica


Solange, Beyoncé’s less attractive, less talented little sister, will not abide any CACs making fun of her interest in Brandy deep cuts.

Yesterday, she had to put New York Times music critic Jon Caramanica on notice for telling her not to bite the hand that feeds, probably several years ago.

I spent the two and a half minutes I’m willing to spend researching a topic consulting the Google for why Solange would be upset with Caramanica, who seems like the kind of person who might pretend to like a Solange album. The most I could come up with is that, years ago, some CAC indie rock kids were mocking Solange for her interest in “Brandy deep cuts,” and she must have gone off on them. Caramanica then warned her, perhaps jokingly, that she shouldn’t bite the hand that feeds.

In other words, Solange was attempting to build a career around bringing Jay Z to Grizzly Bear concerts and singing karaoke versions of “Stillness Is the Move” by Dirty Projectors (I wonder if she ever had any run-ins with Heathcliff Berru — or does he not fuxwit black chicks?). A few CACs actually went along with it. Black people couldn’t be made to give a shit. And now here she was arguing with the small handful of people who ever bought a Solange album.

Biting the hand that feeds is sensitive subject matter for Solange, because how exactly does Solange eat? She only ever released two albums, the most recent of which was seven years ago, and I can’t imagine she recouped on either of them. Five years ago, she released an EP on a label owned by one of the guys from the aforementioned Grizzly Bear. She couldn’t have received much of an advance. it was released right around the same time an article appeared in New York magazine about how the members of Grizzly Bear can’t afford health insurance, despite “Two Weeks” having been in some car commercial.

A few things:

1) I heard that licensing your song for a TV ad, i.e. selling out, doesn’t pay nearly as much as it used to, because everyone has to do it now that no one buys albums anymore. It used to be, you could retire on it.

2) Still, you’d think they could afford health insurance. I’ve been paying for health insurance out of my own pocket since ’06 (when I got kicked off my parents’ plan, natch) on what I made working part time and running a blog no one reads.

3) Grizzly Bear never did have another hit, nor has Dirty Projectors (unless you count the hit on Heathcliff Berru), and they were among the most successful indie rock acts of that era, along with the mighty Vampire Weekend, which essentially broke up the other day. I wonder what their financial situation is like these days.

The members of Grizzly Bear will have to forgive me for saying this, but the fact of the matter is that they’re at increased risk of contracting the HIV, and you’ve got Martin Shkreli out here jacking up the price of AIDS medicine to the point where only Magic Johnson and Charlie Sheen can afford it. They can’t afford to not have health insurance.

But I digress.

To supplement the vast amount of money she’s not making as a musician, Solange also has a blog. The other day, this blog ran a feature on Brandy, who — quiet as kept — has continued to release new music since “The Boy Is Mine” was poppin’ back in like ’98 and must have a new album out. This brought up a lot of deeply felt emotions for Solange, stemming from when her few fans were mocking her on Twitter.

Solange is what’s known as a grievance collector. Because she’s got a lot of free time, and because she’s apt to be criticized, she sits around and obsessively catalogs all the times she’s been offended.

It’s possible that this term, like street harassment, has been around since the late ’70s, if not before, but I first became familiar with it last summer when I saw, on my lunch break at the warehouse, the video of that guy who filmed himself shooting two people filming a local TV news broadcast and then posted it to Twitter.

Later I read that the guy sat around and obsessed over every single time a CAC said or did to him something kinda racist, which, as a black man in America, I don’t even know how he found the time to write all that shit down. Sometimes you gotta let that shit slide, if only because we only live to be like 60 years old. There’s better things we can be doing.

RIP Big Kap

Solange has been harboring resentment about the Brandy deep cuts meme, and Caramanica’s admittedly accurate take on it, since like 2012. It may have even played a part in that time she pulled a Ray Rice on Jay Z.

It was never fully explained why Solange was upset with Jay Z. Did he cut her allowance? There’s no way she hasn’t been living off of her sister for her entire adult life at this point. At the time, there was speculation that Jay may have stepped out on Beyoncé. Solange also harbors a lot of resentment having to do with her father’s “outside children.”

The problem with continuing to be upset about things that happened several years ago is that eventually it’ll cause you to lash out. That might take the form of throwing a multi-tweet bitchfit on Twitter, which is completely unacceptable for a man, but also unseemly for an adult woman, or swinging on a guy in an elevator, knowing good and well he can’t so much as raise his hands to protect his face without having his career ruined, without becoming the next Heathcliff Berru.

She’s fortunate that Jay Z was like 56 when that happened. Reasonable Doubt-era Jay Z would have backhanded her into Bolivian.

Solange needs to focus on finding things she can do so that she’s not sitting around sweating ancient Internets beefs from back when Grizzly Bear still had a career. If she can’t become a better, more talented person, she can at least find ways to occupy her time. She might consider actually writing some of the posts on her blog, if only to have something to do.

Take it easy on yourself,


Originally published at .

Life in a Shanty Town

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Byron Crawford

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Best-selling author of The Mindset of a Champion, Infinite Crab Meats and NaS Lost @byroncrawford

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