R&B singer Tank explains why haters wont stop him from performing at Pride events
R&B singer-songwriter Tank has hit back against haters who are accusing him of being gay for singing at a Pride event.
Featuring on the Drink Champs podcast, the Grammy-nominated star reflected on the backlash he received in 2017 for performing at a Washington DC LGBTQ+ Pride celebration.
“In terms of the Black community, you know, there’s a stigma,” he said on the podcast. “There’s a hate that goes along with being gay. And oftentimes in our language to even degrade a person, we use gay as the adjective. So that carries on into entertainment.”
He expressed disappointment for what he described as a “continued disdain” for the LGBTQ+ community within the Black community. He later professed that this doesn’t influence who he performs for.
“My friend said, ‘What do you think about performing at a gay Pride parade in DC? I said, ‘Well s**t, what kind of band [do] they have?’ He said, ‘They’ve got this kind of band’, and I said, ‘I’m on the way,'” Tank explained.
The homophobic abuse continued, however, with several comments on the podcast clip suggesting that Tank’s support of the gay community is actually because he’s secretly queer himself.
He hit back at those comments in a later post, saying: “As you can see by these comments, the hate will never stop.
“The divide will continue as long as people lack love and understanding. You calling me gay or making up s**t to support your gay claims about me won’t make me gay… lol.”
In fact, Tank has been in an on-and-off relationship with his longtime spouse Zena Foster since the early 2000s. The two married on July 22 2018 and have two children together.
He’s best known for the song When We, which has just under 77 million listens on Spotify and more than 118 million views on YouTube. He was nominated for a Grammy four times – twice in 2008, once in 2011, and again in 2014.