Great, hilariously snarky reminder that cultural specificity matters and not everything is conceived/created/executed/distributed to be consumed or presentable for the White gaze. The mainstream is White even though almost all of the most popular contributors get their influences from non-White, mostly taken for granted sources.
“Mainstream” “universal” “relateable”… all frequently serve as code words for “would a stereotypical White audience feel alienated, threatened, or confused by this? What if it has a White face on it? Ok, let’s sell it.” Although many different groups will consume this cultural product after it gets the stamp of approval, the gatekeepers are most often White or holding to “mainstream standards.” This appropriation is especially true when it comes to music as Alex so keenly notes.
Anything that is paradoxically already in pop culture and not entirely produced with the White gaze in mind will be diagrammed, dissected, analyzed until it is at the disposal of the “mainstream.” See: Twerking or Beyonce’s album with culturally specific references like “What’s Love Got to Do with It?”