Solange Knowles Writes Powerful Essay After Hostile Incident at Kraftwerk Concert

Knowles reflected on a racially-charged incident in which a group of women threw food at her and her family.
September 11, 2016, 11:40pm
Screenshot via Vimeo.

On Friday night, Solange Knowles took to her Twitter to discuss an uncomfortable, racially-charged incident that occurred between the singer and a group of women at a Kraftwerk concert. "Let me tell you about why black girls / women are so angry," she began in a series of since-deleted tweets that detailed the incident. According to Knowles, the women demanded Knowles, her husband, her son and her son's friend, "sit down now," after dancing at the show. Later, the women allegedly threw a lime at Knowles. "I'm just going to share my experience," she began, "so that maybe someone will understand, why many of us don't feel safe…"


But in this moment, I'm just going to share my experience…
So that maybe someone will understand, why many of us don't feel safe…

— solange knowles (@solangeknowles)September 10, 2016

…in many white spaces… We don't 'bring the drama'…. Fix yourself.

— solange knowles (@solangeknowles)September 10, 2016

Today, Knowles posted an essay to her Saint Heron website expanding on the incident. Writing in the second person, Knowles connected the history of white supremacy, past incidents she has faced and her interaction at the Kraftwerk concert.

"Imagine. Telling your son and his friend Rasheed about a band you love and one that played a pivotal role in the history of hip-hop. Something that as a family you all feel very connected to," she began. "About 20 seconds later, you hear women yell aggressively, "Sit down now, you need to sit down right now" from the box behind you. You want to be considerate, however, they were not at all considerate with their tone, their choice of words, or the fact that you just walked in and seem to be enjoying yourself. You are also confused as to what show you went to. This is a band that were pioneers of electronic and dance music. Surely the audience is going to expect you to dance at some point."

Knowles continues the essay by recounting the media fallout, the reactions on Twitter, and how they relate to larger incidents across the country and globe regarding prejudiced treatment toward people of color.

"After you think it all over, you know that the biggest payback you could ever had," she wrote, "was dancing right in front of them with my hair swinging from left to right, my beautiful black son and husband, and our dear friend Rasheed jamming the hell out with the rhythm our ancestors blessed upon us saying … We belong. We belong. We belong. We built this."

Read the entire powerful and necessary essay here. In 2015, we wrote about what it is like to be a brown kid in dance music.