Robin Thicke Okay, so unless you knew Robin Thicke when he first started his career as Thicke, a hippy-dressed soul singer with long hair (don’t care), you, like me, were probably shocked to find out that he was NOT black.I became a fan immediately after first hearing “Wanna Love You Girl,” and my first time hearing it was on the computer, before the music video came out, before he had done a public performance of it.So when the video dropped and my sister bought me his CD, I was pretty confused.I wasn’t mad though, because I remember thinking, “damn, he’s kind of cute! Joss Stone Many British singers with deeper voices tend to get the “blue-eyed soul singer” card thrown at them whether they love it or hate it.Boy, was I shocked to see that black woman with the powerful, rolling voice was a white woman with really dark, really short hair who liked to wear WAY too much makeup.Either way, that song has stayed in my i Tunes rotation for years.Joss and her heavy voice, known for being breathy one minute then growling the next, was someone I assumed was of the black persuasion when I first heard the song, “Fell in Love With a Boy.” Well, she wasn’t of course, and since then, she’s garnered a lot of success and love, including some big ups from iconic singers like Patti Labelle and the chance to sing alongside The Roots, James Brown and more.In fact, the comment most “liked” on You Tube is by an individual saying they could have swore he was black. Maybe because this song just played, and played, and played on the radio for all these years without most people trying to seek out some sort of video (there doesn’t actually seem to be an official video).
It wasn’t until videos popped up for some of our favorite jams that we didn’t see a black man or woman, but a white man or woman–and it surprised the hell out of us.A lot of these singers are probably your personal favorites by now, some you may have never heard of, but don’t lie, you know you were telling your friends at one point or another, “Oh snap, I just assumed he/she was black…”You’re not the only one. A few weeks back, I made the morning jam on our social media Bobby Caldwell’s “What You Won’t Do for Love.” The video posted was of the singer and his band performing the beloved track live, and while most people reminisced on how much they genuinely loved the song back in the day, many people made it a point to let the world know they didn’t know he was white.Just a heads up, if you were thinking this was going to be one of those posts that idolizes “blue-eyed soul singers” or says folks are out here trying to “sound black” (as if there’s one way to sound black), you’re mistaken.This is a list about a few individuals with voices that we accidentally assumed at one point and time belonged to black people.
That’s the jam though…Lisa Stansfield When I was younger, riding in the back of my mother’s van, the local hip-hop and R&B stations used to play the mess out of some “Been Around the World,” so for many years, I just assumed that Stansfield was a black woman who really missed her baby.That was until I clicked to a video channel called one day and finally saw a video for the song.