Gwen Stefani has dealt with her fair share of cultural appropriation accusations in her career, some that date back to the early 2000s. A portion of these claims came as a result of her use of Harajuku Girls backup dancers and Japanese street fashion over the years. The singer has often denied these accusations and it’s something she did once again when the topic arose during a recent interview with Paper Magazine.
“I had this idea that I would have a posse of girls — because I never got to hang with girls — and they would be Japanese, Harajuku girls, because those are the girls that I love. Those are my homies,” Stefani explained. “That’s where I would be if I had my dream come true, I could go live there and I could go hang out in Harajuku.” She added, “If we didn’t buy and sell and trade our cultures in, we wouldn’t have so much beauty, you know? We learn from each other, we share from each other, we grow from each other. And all these rules are just dividing us more and more.”
Stefani also seemingly threw some indirect criticism at cancel culture by comparing today’s times to that of the past.
“I think that we grew up in a time where we didn’t have so many rules,” she said. “We didn’t have to follow a narrative that was being edited for us through social media, we just had so much more freedom.”
You can read Stefani’s full interview with Paper here.