I wrote the other day that new anthems for Black Lives Matter by Alicia Keys and HER Music just weren’t selling. Great songs, important themes, but no traction. That hasn’t changed.
But now it’s clear that Beyonce’s “Black Parade,” released on Friday night, has been a dud. The single has 15,000 downloads since Friday night, and a total of 50,000 in sales that includes just 35,000 worth of streaming sales.
What’s going on? In the early 70s when race and politics found their way into music, we had hit after hit with topical references by Marvin Gaye, the Staples Singers, the O’Jays, etc.
I thought “Black Parade” would light a fire, and stay at number 1 for some time. Instead, it’s fallen to number 15 on iTunes and will drop like a rock tonight after new releases hit the charts. Alicia Keys’s “Perfect Way to Die” is no where on the chart and HER Music’s “I Can’t Breathe” has dropped to number 50. None of them are getting any radio play, even from black or urban or R&B stations.
So where is black owned Radio One and Cathy Hughes? She invented the Quiet Storm. It’s time for a thunderstorm on her stations!