there has been no greater tension within the tradition of black pop music than that associated with the performance of ‘black’ styles by white musicians and performers. in the past, it has been all too easy to identify many of these white artists under the rubric of ‘blue-eyed soul’ – a term that is as much a social construction of raced identities as it is a marketing ploy. using paul c. taylor's essay ‘funky white boys and honorary soul sisters’ as a reference, i'd like to argue that there are artists who transcend, to varying degrees, the kinds of ‘affective obstacles’ that make it difficult for some audiences to derive pleasures from so-called ‘white’ performances of black musical idioms.
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