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Ray BLK told to not become a singer because she's black


IT'S NO secret that black women - and specifically dark skin black women - continue to face adversities and discrimination across various fields.

Despite constant discussions around diversity, which would lead you to believe things are improving, institutional racism, prejudice, colourism and more are consistent issues that black women face - and singer Ray BLK has spoken about her experiences in a new interview.

Speaking to BBC Newsbeat, the Nigerian-born singer revealed she was once told to be a songwriter, not a singer, because of her skin colour.

She said when she started out, a producer said "as a black woman, there's no point".

"But I refused to follow that, I believed in myself and my talent and I wasn't going to let it be a disadvantage," said Ray BLK.

The 25-year-old continues to defy those odds, becoming the first unsigned artist to win the BBC's Sound Of prize in 2017 and prides herself on inspiring other young girls to "stay focused and not watch what everyone else is doing."

Speaking at her former secondary school in Sydenham, south London, she shared some advice she would give to her younger self and other young students at Sydenham School, which included that she would say not to be on social media.

"I would tell my 16-year-old self just to stay focused, and not to watch what anybody else is doing."

She also said she would tell her teenage self "not to be seeing how this person looks and why I don't look like that, and why this person's getting this and that. And just to remain focused on my own journey."

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