Gwen Stefani is facing backlash after defending her Harajuku days and claiming how her first visit to Tokyo led her to believe “I’m Japanese, but I don’t know it”.
The singer has previously been criticized for using Japanese culture to promote her music and merchandise.
This 53-year-old Italian-American She also touched on her Harajuku Lovers fragrance line, which has faced growing backlash since it was first launched in 2008 amid allegations that she appropriated Japanese culture at various points in her career.
In an interview with American beauty magazine Allure, the California-born singer mentioned her father’s work at Yamaha, where he regularly visits Japan, where the company is headquartered, before being asked about the fragrance line.
“That’s a culture I’ve had Japanese influences, it’s rich in tradition but also futuristic, with a great attention to artistry, detail and discipline, which fascinates me,” says Stephanie.
She later traveled to Tokyo’s Harajuku district, telling the magazine: “I said, ‘My God, I’m Japanese, I don’t know’. I am, you know.”
Stephanie added that she’s a “huge fan” of Japanese culture, adding: “(Being) inspired by other cultures should be fine, because if we’re not allowed to, it’s dividing people, right?”
Social media users have been criticizing Stephanie, calling her “for too long on this bullshit” and how “disappointing” she has chosen to “double down” on her position.
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But others stood by the singer, claiming criticism “will prevent musicians from exploring different inspirations from other cultures”.
who is stephanie married country star blake shelton, had previously been criticized for how she used Japanese culture to promote her 2004 debut solo album Love. Angel. music. baby.
It was during this period that she was supported by Japanese-American dancers known as Harajuku Girls.