Music made and performed by black artists is unique. It carries a special vibe that is at once both classic and futuristic. It's why hip-hop was named the most important revolution in pop music and why even the reigning country-pop queen Taylor Swift nabbed rapper Kendrick Lamar for her "Bad Blood" track.
These are the responses from stars on the BET Awards red carpet Sunday night when asked to describe music made by African Americans. As new artist Jidenna, who has one of the summer's hottest tracks right now, "Classic Man," put it, black music is that which "you feel in your soul as much as you feel it in your body."
"The beauty of black music is the diversity," he said. "That's what I hope I'm bringing. I don't want us to be narrow. We're not a narrow or monolithic people. We need the classic. We need the ratchet. We need it all."
The BET Awards, held each year during Black Music Month, honors the best of the best in black entertainment. Artists including Nicki Minaj, Beyonce, Chris Brown and the Weeknd took home awards while performances included a reunion of Sean "Diddy" Combs' once-powerful hip-hop label Bad Boy Records with cameos by Mase, Lil' Kim, 112 and Faith Evans.
On the red carpet, to observe the end of Black Music Month, celebrities including soul songstress Avery Sunshine, crooner Anthony Hamilton and R&B veteran Omarion gushed over their choices for the most iconic voices in black music. Their choices varied from hip hop to rock and roll, gospel to pop.
We've compiled their picks into a Spotify playlist below. Take a listen and let us know who you would add.
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