This is What It's Really Like to Be an African American Country Music Fan

It's so important to hear about this country music fan's experience

June 4, 2020
Rachel Berry, What it's like to be a black country music fan, what it's like to be an african american country music fan

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Think of the last time you purchased a pair of concert tickets. What are some things you would normally take into consideration before buying them? 

For many music fans it's ticket price and where their seats are. It's pretty easy. 

Unfortunately, that's not the case for Rachel Berry, an African American woman from New Jersey who's gone viral on Instragram after sharing her reality when it comes to being a country music fan; and her message is something every country music fan needs to hear. 

In her heartfelt post, she explains that before she evens buys tickets to a show, she Googles the name of the city and then adds the word "racism."  If the first two or three links that pop up are about acts of racism in that town, she doesn't go.

You know how when you stand up at a concert to dance with friends? You might have someone kindly ask you (sometimes it's TELL you) to sit down; but not Rachel. Her biggest fear is that if she stands up, someone will yell a racial slur at her and tell her to sit down. 

And picture this- when you're walking through the parking lot or campgrounds at a music festival, what do you look for? Your friends or where the party's at; not even thinking twice about anything else, except for maybe how much you've had to drink. For Rachel, she says she feels nervous just walking through the parking lot, saying, "I have felt uneasy walking through a crowd of tailgaters. and seeing Confederate flags flying high from their trucks.  I find myself almost wishing I was invisible so I could walk through the crowd without being seen or noticed." 

Could you imagine?

We could never accurately describe how she's feeling or what she's going through, so please read her Instagram post and at the very end, she sums it up best by saying, ""We ALL have to stand together and stand up for what's right.  We all bleed red.  There should be no racial divide.  Period."

**not sure who will actually read this but figured I’d give my viewpoint on what’s going on in the world & hopefully open up some eyes on what goes on in the mind of a country music fan who’s in the minority* This girl loves country music and she loves going to country music concerts. However, I would be lying if I said that she has never felt uncomfortable when she’s at one. When I hear a song that moves me and makes me want to stand up (which is often if you know me), I’ve realized that I unconsciously think quickly in my head, moments before I stand up, “what if someone yells a racial slur at me?” Hearing “SIT DOWN” is very common for my friends and I but what if someone were to throw in an extra word at the end, just for me? Before you buy tickets to a show, have you ever looked up the name of the town/city and then “racism”? I have. There have been a few shows that I have had to pass on because the first 2 or 3 links that popped up were about acts of racism that have happened there. I’ve also had to plan out stops on long road trips. There’s a possibility that getting out of my car and walking into a gas station or rest stop where I’m not welcome could end badly. Festivals and fairs are also touchy. I love them. A great music lineup, being with friends, the food & drinks, the amusement rides and the games ... what more could you ask for? But I have felt uneasy walking through a crowd of tailgaters and seeing Confederate flags flying high from their trucks. I find myself almost wishing I was invisible so I could walk through the crowd without being seen or noticed. I don’t say all of this for sympathy because it is what it is and everyday I’m still working on how to become comfortable in my own skin. But all I ask from not only the country music community, but every human being on this Earth, is that if you see or hear something that is wrong, speak up. Call people out on it. Don’t just ignore it, look away or laugh. Educate yourselves, your children & your families. For change to happen, we ALL have to be more vocal. We ALL have to stand together and stand up for what’s right. We all bleed red. There should be no racial divide. Period. #blackouttuesday

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[H/T: CMT>