After leaving empty-handed after 11 Grammy nominations since her debut in 2008, Jazmine Sullivan is equal parts frustrated and determined.
Sullivan recently celebrated her return from a five-year hiatus with the release of her studio album, Reality Show, which debuted at No. 2 on Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart.
However, at this point in her career, the soul singer can’t help but question why her successes haven’t mirrored those of Adele, the singer she is often compared to. While fans take to Twitter to beg for collaborations between the two powerful voices, others have the same question as Sullivan, with many conversations concerning the undervaluing of R&B by Black artists while the opposite is true for white artists.
“I guess I’m glad that people are recognizing me in some way, and kind of see there’s a little injustice in how Black soul artists are received,” Sullivan recently told the AP. “But, at the same time, I try not to focus so much on the negativity.”
The singer continued on in the interview, saying that while there “…may not be as many people [who] listen to Adele, there are people who are listening. There are people who appreciate me. There are people who love my music.”
Now that Sullivan has returned to the spotlight, the stage and the studio alike, she’s focusing less on feeling marginalized due to her skin color and more on connecting with fans and continuing to keep a positive attitude.
“If I go to a show, and it’s sold out, and if people are singing the lyrics to the songs, that’s the kind of stuff that makes what I do so great,” Sullivan says.
And on not winning a Grammy?
“I work really hard on my music. They acknowledge the effort and hopefully I’ll take it home one day.”
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(Photo: Jonathan Leibson/Getty Images for Samsung)