Chloe Bailey Says She's 'Learning It's OK' To Be Who She Is
The 23-year-old opens up about being considered "overly sexy" and "doing too much."
October 20, 2021 at 8:19 pm
You're damned if you do, damned if you don't, and Chlöe Bailey is learning that all too well. As of late, Beyoncé's protégé is either compared to her mentor, told she's "doing too much," ridiculed for her "overly sexy" performances, or praised for the multifaceted, talented, superwoman she is.
The "Have Mercy" singer recently appeared on The Mike Muse Show with host Mike Muse on Sirius XM's Urban View and discussed her journey toward being comfortable in her skin and confident in her sexuality as a young Black woman working in the industry.
In reaction to the artist's performance at the 2021 MTV VMAs and most recently on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Muse compared Bailey's stage presence to the feminist movement. "The reaction towards you and how you have embraced your body during this time period for me has been shocking. Because I think about the feminist movement, in particular within the art space," said Muse. "I think about women like Madonna and Janet [Jackson]. I think about Grace Jones; I think about all these dynamic black women. Even Tina Turner has this sexuality to her that she embraced, Donna Summer."
"Being myself isn’t a rebellious act," the singer said. "Maybe because I’m kind of tearing down society’s norms. Maybe that is a rebellious act. But it wasn’t intentional. If being yourself is being a rebel then yeah."
Chloe on why people think she “does too much -— Chillin’ HAVE MERCY A BOP! (@beenchillin__) October 19, 2021
“I honestly don’t know, However I will not change, so people can keep saying that & I will keep being myself & the world will keep spinning” @ChloeBailey TALK YO SHIT SIS🔥🔥🔥👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾 pic.twitter.com/zDRGtIOpUr
Earlier this week, Bailey shared a similar sentiment on the Spout podcast while discussing the harsh judgments she and "Rumors" singer Lizzo face.
"No one has said I can't sing, no one has said I can't dance, I'd rather be too much of something good, than too little of anything," Bailey said.
When asked how she felt about fans dishing out criticism and saying she's "doing too much," Bailey somewhat understands the root of the critique. Seeing Black women live unapologetically can be a bit jarring to some.
"Well, take me out of the equation. It's always shocking when a Black woman is confident in the skin that she's in and isn't afraid to show it. So all of those women that you named, even though, if that was years ago, that will continue to happen even way after me because the world isn't comfortable with that," she told The Michael Muse Show. "And I think as long as women who have inspired me and my peers continue to break down those walls and those barriers and say, screw what anyone else has to think, I will love who I am, and I will be proud about it and speak up loudly about it, then no one can really hold us back."
Y’all need to leave Chloe Bailey alone. This obsession of saying she does “too much” is really you being uncomfortable with her confidence as she finds herself.— OLONI BABY (@Oloni) October 14, 2021
As Bailey navigates through her journey of owning her sexuality on and off the stage, she says that ignoring the haters is something she hasn't mastered yet.
"I'm learning that my voice matters. And I have to believe in myself before anyone else will because they won't, And no one will fight for you unless you fight for yourself. So that's one of the biggest lessons I have learned these past two years for myself. And I'm learning it's okay to be who I am," the singer said. "And if anyone has anything to say about it, it does not matter. It's irrelevant because who I am is not who they are."
On the positive, when asked about her forthcoming debut solo album, Bailey confirmed the project would showcase her multi-faceted nature.
"I can't wait for people to hear it whenever it's ready because they'll get me completely Chlöe 360. People just see one side of me, even 'Have Mercy,' I love it so much. That's the song I wanted to come out first, and I love it, but that song is just the tip of the iceberg. Like people don't really, I don't think if someone was like, 'oh, this would be the next song that I hear from Chlöe,' I don't think they'd be able to pinpoint it. And I never want to be predictable ever. I'm such a huge fan and lover of music that it's not right, and it's not fair to just do one sound," said the young performer.
Watch the entire interview below: