Despite the public backlash from her performance at President Donald Trump’s inauguration ceremony, Chrisette Michele says she wants to fight for the people. How she plans to do so remains under wraps as she told “The Breakfast Club” Wednesday morning (Jan. 25) how she’s been dealing with backlash and praise from those of lighter shades.
The singer explained why she decided to perform at the ceremony, citing previously she performed for Barack and Michelle Obama at the White House. “I needed them to see us,” she said. “I needed them to see what we have to say, what we look like, how we talk. With the entire campaign experience, I think that many of us were wondering, who is he talking to?” Michele admitted she turned her phone off when she agreed to perform. She also seemed to think she was doing a tremendous service to those who wanted to stand against Trump. During her performance with gospel singer Travis Greene, the singer wore the latest Alice and Olivia/Basquiat collaboration to make a statement with her performance.
“I knew that people wouldn’t understand. I refer to myself as a wolf in sheep’s clothing, but really, I was a sheep in wolf’s clothing,” she said “I was as afraid as we all are right now, knowing that I had to put on some kind of armor. I call it the armor of God. That’s why I went there and sang gospel.”
Calling the backlash a figure of “change,” the singer says she’s already receiving calls from politicians who can combat Trump’s destructive plans against immigrants and other groups. “It’s only been three days; we got four years ahead of us. I’m hoping there can be change in the next ten days, two weeks, etc. God is control, that’s all I was saying on stage.” Dropping John Lewis’ name several times, Michele says she plans to meet with him (and people like him) to create a political uprising. She also says she’s been receiving support from “behind closed doors” from celebrities and white people who aren’t fans of Trump.
In addition to her upcoming spoken-word project No Political Genius, she’s creating a show of the same name that centers on people of different races facing similar problems. Congressmen and other community leaders will also be included in the series.
When it comes to the memes and backlash, Michele isn’t worried. “It’s okay for them to come for me,” she said.”They’re entitled to a broken heart. People are going to come for you no matter what you do [but] what am I supposed to do, cry? I’m never going to cry over someone calling me a coon or a bi**h. We’ve been called that s**t for years.”
Watch the interview in full below.