Renowned YouTube music critic Anthony Fantano recently talked about whether White people can enjoy Jay-Z. This was in response to a viewer question who asked what he thought about people who said that Jay-Z’s recent single, “The Story of O.J.” wasn’t for White people.
I mostly agree with Fantano’s answer: yes, White people can certainly enjoy Jay-Z’s music, yes they can enjoy rap, and yes rap is already ingrained in our musical culture. However, I observe that Fantano changed the question from “Is Jay-Z’s music for White people?” to “Can White people enjoy Jay-Z’s music?”
When someone says, “This music is not for you,” they are not trying to say “Stop enjoying this music.” Or, at least I don’t think they are. The question referred to arguments in the YouTube comments on Jay-Z’s video, but I couldn’t actually find these arguments. Instead what I found was a bunch of White people rather defensively asserting that they did enjoy the music.
What are they even reacting to? Did they read some YouTube comments that I can’t find? Or is it a matter of misinterpretation, in the same way that Anthony Fantano himself subtly changed the original question?