Lana Del Rey premiered the title track of her upcoming album Chemtrails Over The Country Club today, and after she did that, she chatted with Annie Mac for a live interview on BBC Radio 1. It was during that conversation that Del Rey offered her thoughts about the controversial comments she initially wrote when sharing the album art yesterday; Her comments addressed race and the people included in the art, comments that some thought were tone deaf.
The relevant part of the BBC interview went:
Del Rey: “Before I even put the album cover up, I knew what people were gonna say. So when they actually started saying things, I responded and I just said, ‘I’ve got a lot of issues, but inclusivity just ain’t one of them.’ It just isn’t. You can’t just make it my problem. My friends, my family, my whatever… They’re not all one way and we’re not the ones storming the Capitol. [laughs] We voted for Biden. My girlfriends come from all over the world, they have children from all different types of people. And I’m mentioning all this, like, to people who are listening because people really wanted even more people of color on my album cover. Which you know is, to a point, a photo just sometimes is what it is.”
Mac: “So you are saying people pressured you to put more people of color so that it could look, what, representative, that type of thing? Or totalistic?”
Del Rey: “That was the issue that was coming up. But I said that actually half the people in this photo are people of color. […] I thought about it for the better half of that day and I thought, ‘Well, I don’t want to be discouraged because this is what happens often with this, like… I actually am representing a certain thing, but people will say that I’m not.’ It’s kind of like being in opposite world.”
Mac: “Those women are your friends. Am I right? Those are all people that are dear to you?”
Del Rey: “Oh yeah, they are my longest-term, nicest friends. I also felt uncomfortable having them somewhat brought into the controversy, but I spoke to them as well and they were like, ‘We don’t care. You should not care about everything you’re doing… Your friends are from all over the place and you’ve never represented yourself in any other way.’ I think back to all my songs and videos and starting with more of a hip-hop sound… I mean, I just don’t feel like that’s my issue. I feel like there have been certain things that people have touched on that have made me be like, ‘OK, maybe I have to look at that,’ but this is not one of them. I wasn’t being preemptive, I was definitely responding, but […] I just feel like if that’s really what people are gonna say, I have an answer for them, which is that if you look closer, you will see people of color. It’s a black-and-white image, so zoom in, you know? It’s just weird.”
Listen to the full conversation here.
Chemtrails Over The Country Club is out 3/19 via Interscope. Pre-order it here.