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Lenny Kravitz Says He Hasn't Always Felt 'Celebrated' By Black Media

Lenny Kravitz performs at the iHeartRadio Music Awards on March 27 in Los Angeles.
Lenny Kravitz performs at the iHeartRadio Music Awards on March 27 in Los Angeles.

Lenny Kravitz performs at the iHeartRadio Music Awards on March 27 in Los Angeles.

Lenny Kravitz recently shared that he has often felt overlooked by Black publications and media organizations.

The rock star explained to Esquire in a profile published online Wednesday that he didn’t understand why he was rarely recognized by outlets and award shows dedicated to celebrating Black artists like him.

Kravitz first appeared on the cover of Vibe in 2001 — nearly a decade after the magazine published its initial issue. The singer delivered six studio albums by the end of that year.

“To this day, I have not been invited to a BET thing or a Source Awards thing,” he told Esquire, naming other Black media fixtures that he’s felt overlooked by.

“Here is a Black artist who has reintroduced many Black art forms, who has broken down barriers—just like those that came before me broke down. That is positive. And they don’t have anything to say about it?”

He added that he didn’t know why his success wasn’t “celebrated by the folks who run those publications or organizations.”

“I have been that dream and example of what a Black artist can do,” he said, adding that he’s “not here for the accolades” regardless.

“I’m here for the experience,” he said.

The last Source Awards show took place in 2005, though recent years have seen talk of bringing the event back. The BET Awards, which first premiered in 2001, aired its 23rd annual ceremony in June.

The Source magazine and Black Entertainment Television did not immediately return requests for comment.

Lenny Kravitz speaks at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on Nov. 5, 2022, in Los Angeles.
Lenny Kravitz speaks at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on Nov. 5, 2022, in Los Angeles.

Lenny Kravitz speaks at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on Nov. 5, 2022, in Los Angeles.

Elsewhere in the Esquire interview, Kravitz discussed pushback he has received throughout his music career as a Black artist navigating a rock music establishment that is predominantly white.

“I got a lot of negativity thrown at me by all these older white men,” he said.

Kravitz is set to release his upcoming album, “Blue Electric Light,” in March.

He released a single off the record, titled “TK421,” last month.

The song’s accompanying music video featured Kravitz baring it all, joyfully dancing nude for a significant portion of its running time.

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