In an interview with The Guardian, openly bisexual pop superstar Halsey is asked about the wisdom of including Migos rapper Quavo on her album, as his comments on homosexuality and subsequent apology caused a bit of an uproar earlier this year.
Surprisingly, she defends him, saying it’s not her job to police other artists.
“I think he’s misunderstood,” she says. “Just because I choose to be a socially conscious artist, and I’m pretty good at it, that doesn’t mean every artist is going to be equipped to be politically correct. I don’t think he’s inherently homophobic, I think he’s in a tough place of trying to explain what he means. I agree his apology was bullshit but I can’t police everybody.”
When I suggest that one place she surely can police everybody is within the walls of her own album, she pauses. “Yes, I can,” she adds, “and there’s a lot of people I wouldn’t put on my record. Iggy Azalea: absolutely not. She had a complete disregard for black culture. Fucking moron. I watched her career dissolve and it fascinated me.”
So…. Quavo’s homophobia isn’t worth policing but Iggy Azalea disrespecting black culture is a bridge too far?
Elsewhere in the article she comes off as bit of a reclusive whackadoodle:
When asked about her song, “Angel On Fire,” she said the real story is far more bleak. “It’s about me having a party at my house that I’m not attending,” Halsey says. “I locked myself in my bedroom, went to sleep and let everyone party until 6am. Then I did it again. And again, and again …” Over the course of several months last year, she’d invite people to parties at her LA home, then hide. When asked why, she begins reasonably (“I like entertaining people, I just don’t like having to do it myself”), then sounds like a sociopath (“It’s awesome because the next week people come up to you and say: ‘Your party was sick!’”). And then, when we discuss one specific line in Angel On Fire – “nobody seems to ask about me any more” – it all comes out.
“Everyone thinks they know what’s going on in my life, because they read it on the internet,” she says. “I’ll buy a table at a restaurant, I’ll buy bottles, I’ll pay for everyone, then we’ll go to the movies. People I barely know. I’m trying to make friends, I’m trying to get to know people. Nobody says thank you because they’re like: ‘Ashley has money.’”
This extends, she says, to her family; they don’t call to see how she is, which clearly troubles her, but not as much as the fact that she doesn’t want them to call, because if they did she’d only tell them how tired and busy she is. Fame and success are often dangerous not because of what they do to you, but because of what they do to the people around you. Right now, Halsey seems to feel pressure from both sides. “I used to be this social queen,” she sighs. “I could go anywhere, make anyone like me, go to any party, talk to anybody. I used to have no shame in walking up to someone on a plane or train and sitting down and chatting to them. I used to just talk. I used to be obsessed with people; now, I’m terrified of them.”
Fascinating how fame affects different people differently. That is some Warhol-level nuttiness.
But back to the Quavo/Iggy Azalea controversy.
This just in:
Via Headline Planet:
Amid controversy over remarks Halsey made in an interview with The Guardian (and the subsequent trending of a “#halseyisoverparty” hashtag), the artist issued a response on Twitter.
The openly bisexual Halsey addressed what some perceived as defense of Quavo, who came under fire earlier this year for a comment he made in an interview with Rolling Stone. Quavo’s perspective on rapper iLOVEMAKONNEN was deemed homophobic by many fans and journalists.
Halsey clarified that she was not defending Quavo, with whom she collaborated on the song “Lie.” She noted that she did not know about his comments when they collaborated, had not spoken a word to him, and had no intention of pursuing a friendship “unless he wants to make a legitimate apology.”
The artist meanwhile stood by the interview comments she made about Iggy Azalea.
Responding to a Tweet that claimed she defended Quavo and attacked Azalea in the interview, Halsey Tweeted, “The quavo comments taken out of an off record convo about music industry homophobia. NOT a defense. Don’t regret the Iggy comments sorry.”
“Honestly? I didn’t know that Quavo had made homophobic comments when I collaborated him,” continued Halsey. “We’ve never spoken a word to each other and I have no intention of pursuing a friendship there, unless he wants to make a legitimate apology.
HOWEVER. I don’t regret saying that Iggy has a disregard for black culture.”
Halsey ultimately deleted the Tweets in which she referenced Azalea, but comments specific to Quavo remain on her feed.
When subsequently confronted abut “defending a rapper [she’d] never spoken a word to regarding LGBT issues,” Halsey noted, “I think thats an important point. I AM queer & I TRY to be understanding & want people to be educated. But im truly sorry for my misjudgment.”
Not content to simply address the Quavo and Azalea remarks, Halsey also made broader points about social consciousness.
“I work tirelessly to represent & support marginalized communities I love & am a part of. I’m sorry if my actions have ever seemed otherwise…I only meant to say that people can struggle being socially conscious if they don’t have the information/vocabulary. So we must educate them…And I’m proud to watch the young people around me work hard to educate themselves and others to stay woke every day.”
“Quavo” is featured on “Lie,” a track on Halsey’s recently released album “Hopeless Fountain Kingdom.”
(Photo: Record company handout)