The man who speaks in Auto-Tune, T-Pain, has opened up on his feelings towards homophobia in the world of hip-hop, telling VladTV that while today’s radio may be more gay-friendly, hip-hop is not and that there are artists who will refuse collaborations with openly gay peers like Frank Ocean.
Asked whether he thought the rise of Macklemore was an indication of hip-hop becoming more gay-friendly, T-Pain said, “I think the radio is getting more gay-friendly. I don’t think urban music is getting more gay-friendly because if that was the case, Frank Ocean would be on a lot more songs.”
“I know n-ggas that will not do a song with Frank Ocean just because he’s gay, but they need him on the f-cking song and that’s so terrible to me, man. It’s like, ‘Dude, my lifestyle ain’t going to change how people see you… What I do ain’t going to affect nothing that you got going on.”
T-Pain explained that prior to Ocean’s coming out in an open letter posted to his Tumblr page, he had collaborated with superstars Kanye West and Jay-Z on their Watch the Throne project, “and then when he came out it’s like he can’t get in the studio with Jay and Kanye right now.”
The artist was also asked about his assistant, who is openly gay. T-Pain explained that some of his peers and friends will avoid him if seen with his assistant, to which the singer-rapper said, “It’s like, dude if you ain’t gay, then gay things shouldn’t bother you, gay people shouldn’t bother you.”
He went on to criticise the “no homo” culture endemic in hip-hop and condemning ostracisation motivated by homophobia, saying, “it’s in [a person’s] genes, it’s not a f-cking choice. The man came out like that and you can’t just disown this man because he’s living a certain life.”
In an interview with the same outlet, VladTV, Lord Jamar of legendary hip-hop group Brand Nubian criticised both Macklemore and Frank Ocean for a perceived disingenuousness in using a “gay agenda” to increase their fame and make money in the hip-hop and pop worlds.
Watch: T-Pain Interview with VladTV