• SHARE

A little-discussed truism of R&B is that female vocalists benefited more from Michael Jackson than male vocalists did, and none more than Karyn White. Only gays and black teenage girls seemed to appreciate White’s potential as a revolutionary force in black dance music, someone whose natural gift for melody and a rocker’s instincts pushed the mediocre material that characterized late ’80s R&B over the top.

White was washed out to sea in the Whitney-Mariah tidal wave that swept through the business in the early ’90s, her nervous, totally human vocal gymnastics replaced by a faux gospel passion. Beyonce Knowles, the lead singer and kingpin of Destiny’s Child, is closer to White in terms of musical sensibility than any other big-name singer now shaking her scantily clad rump on MTV. But even if she was influenced artistically by White as a child, she grew up in an industry atmosphere that favored the big effect over all other considerations.

Unable to view this article?

This could be due to a conflict with your ad-blocking or security software.

Please add japantimes.co.jp and piano.io to your list of allowed sites.

If this does not resolve the issue or you are unable to add the domains to your allowlist, please see out this support page.

We humbly apologize for the inconvenience.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.

SUBSCRIBE NOW