There’s a common misconception children of celebrities have it easy — money, fame and the silver platter it arrived on. But as Snoop Dogg’s daughter recently confessed, having famous parents doesn’t always equal happiness.
In a new interview with V Magazine, Will Smith’s daughter Willow opened up about some painful childhood memories in which she felt persecuted for her “alternative” musical tastes.
“[B]eing a Black woman in the metal crowd is very, very different on top of the pressures that the music industry puts on you,” she said. “Now, it’s like an added pressure of the metal culture, the metal world, and just rock in general. I used to get bullied in school for listening to Paramore and My Chemical Romance.”
Despite the gauntlet of criticism she endured at school, Willow moved forward and is making the kind of music she wants to make, which includes a collaboration with Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker called “Transparent Soul.” The track appears on her upcoming rock album.
“I’m so excited that I’m going to be having a song on the album with Avril Lavigne; she is so iconic,” Willow said. “From 13 to 16, she was my idol. It’s really nice to be able to have a quintessential pop-punk record with the pop-punk queen.”
While her father Will Smith rose to notoriety in the Hip Hop world, Willow is knocking down doors in the pop-punk scene and hopes to inspire other young Black women to follow suit.
“Just through the music that I’m putting out right now and the representation that I can bring to the mix, I just hope that the Black girls who are listening to my music and listening to this album see that there’s more of us out there,” she said. “It’s a real thing, you’re not alone.
“You’re not the only Black girl who wishes she could flip her hair to the side, and wear black eyeliner, you know what I mean?”
Listen to “Transparent Soul” with Travis Barker above.