It's hard to imagine a time in recent years that Bruno Mars hasn't had a hit song all over the radio. He dominates the charts with his fusion of modern pop, soul and a whole lotta funk— so of course when you get a chance to sit and talk with him, you'd want to talk about the one thing he has got a firm grasp on; music. That's exactly what he dished to Latina magazine's Jesus Trivino in a recent interview. Not music in general though, but his thoughts on "Black music" in America.
"When you say ‘Black music,’ understand that you are talking about rock, jazz, R&B, reggae, funk, doo-wop, hip-hop and Motown. Black people created it all. Being Puerto Rican, even salsa music stems back to the Motherland [Africa]. So, in my world, black music means everything. It’s what gives America its swag."
There are too many people who'd want to sit and argue with Bruno's statement. Most likely those who classify The Beatles as the best thing to happen to music— ever, but the "24 Karat Magic" singer wasn't stating things just based on personal opinions. There are actually some scientific facts to back up his statements.
Two London universities wanted to see what music or artist had the most impact on society since the 1960's, and after all of their data was in - hip hop came out on top. While some music historians would argue this until they were blue in the face, you can't fight science—of course unless you're in the Trump administration. Hip hop has not only influenced music, but the culture overall by changing the way people speak, act and dress.
Of course "Black music" is not just hip hop, but it's just one of the many genres that Black people have played a heavy hand in building the foundation to which other styles could evolve from. So like Bruno said, "Black music means everything," and music today would be nothing without it. Rhythm and blues gave way to modern rock since Elvis clearly adapted his style from lesser known Black artists that came before him. Then of course we hear modern day hits thanks to the grandfathers and mothers of R&B and reggae. Let's not forget Motown— to which the world would be a lot more bland if Berry Gordy hadn't started that up in 1959.
Some people want to take credit for everything, but when it comes to music it's hard to argue with Bruno Mars when he points out that black music is basically why we even care about music in the first place.