Leigh-Anne Pinnock has spoken out about racism in the music industry, admitting there was a time when she felt “invisible” in her band Little Mix.
Pinnock, 27, said she didn’t think she had as many fans as the rest of the girls – Perrie Edwards, Jesy Nelson or Jade Thirlwall -when the group first started out.
The musician told ASOS Magazine, “During the first couple of years of being in the band, I did feel invisible. I remember crying to my manager regularly, I just couldn’t seem to find my place and didn’t know why.”
“I didn’t feel like I had as many fans as the other girls. It was a strange feeling. I never thought that it was because I was the darkest member of the band. I felt overlooked. So I did everything to make myself more noticed, convinced I wasn’t good enough,” she added, according to Glamour.
Pinnock also recalled how Frank Gatson, Beyonce’s creative director, gave her some advice, telling her that as “the black girl, you have to work twice as hard.”
The British star went on: “Now I don’t feel alone because I’ve seen lots of women speak out about this. I know there are girls of colour out there who have felt the same as me.”
“We have a massive problem with racism which is built into our society. It’s scary. But the more people that speak out, the more change we can start to make.”
Pinnock said she turned to books such as What a Time to Be Alone, The Slumflower’s Guide by Chidera Eggerue and writings by Nia the Light, the Zimbabwean & English YouTuber, for support over the years.