June 2, 2012

The Grio's List of Best Selling Albums Do NOT Celebrate Black Music Month

Let's start off by saying that Marvin Gaye's 'What's Going On' is one of the BEST albums of All Time. It's simply timeless and very much relevant today. Right up there is 'The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill' as well. Now we realize that not everyone can appreciate real jazz, but Miles Davis' 'Kind of Blue' is the best album in the history of recorded music.

Now let's move on to a list curated by the website The Grio titled All-time black albums.  What's going on here? To kick off this year’s Black Music Month, theGrio highlighted 16 black artists who have earned their place on the list of all-time best-selling albums in the U.S. The problem with highlighting these 17 albums (which include two from Mariah Carey and one from Hootie and the Blowfish???) is that it does not celebrate the artistry, the creativity, and the essence of what Black music means to African American people. It's not the reason Black Music Month was created and celebrated in the first place. Now maybe if there was a way to separate out the amount of dollars that Black people spent on albums from the amount of White dollars that was spent- then maybe... that's sounds silly! About as silly as highlighting the top selling albums in the U.S. as the All-time Black albums during Black Music Month.

'Black Music Month: All-time best-selling black albums in America' is the title of the post from Marquis Francis. However the page editor at The Grio decided to go with the post title 'All-time black albums' on their front page. So our criticism is directed towards the page editor and not Mr. Francis.

-The Grio is a website geared towards African American readers from NBC News 

1 comment:

  1. Aside from the fact most lists are trivial matters to begin with, I don't agree the Grio's list is wrong, improper, or irrelevant to Black Music Month. An argument can be made those albums on the list were the most influential to Americans on the whole.

    I actually have a copy of Davis' 'Some Kind of Blue' and other albums some experts consider masterpieces but found little commercial success, even among African-Americans. It just goes to show there's no accounting for tastes.


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