Jesy Nelson has admitted that former Little Mix bandmate Leigh-Anne Pinnock warned her against “blackfishing” last year — because she insisted that her dark tan and curly hair are both natural.
The pair have been embroiled in controversy after messages purportedly sent by Lee-Anne were leaked by an influencer asking them to do a video exposing Jesse to being “Blackfish”.
It’s a term that’s used when a white man uses black culture and aesthetics to his own advantage – Jesse’s look in the music video for his debut single Boys Sparking Controversy when released last week with.
Addressing the backlash, Jesse claimed she wasn’t criticized for her image before going it alone, but we revealed earlier today that Leigh-Anne herself warned Jesse against the look when she was last seen. In the summer the girl was in the group.
And in an Instagram livestream with collaborator Nicki Minaj this evening, the star confessed that the conversation took place — after pleadings, while American rapper Nicki brutally lashed out at her former bandmate.
Referring to Leigh-Anne and bandmate Jade Thirlwall, Jesse said: “I was in a group with two women of color for 10 years and it wasn’t brought to me until the last music video I did with them. I didn’t when Leigh-Anne messaged me…”
Before she could continue, Nikki interrupted to say more about the saga.
Defending his image, Jesse also told the livestream audience: “I never intended to offend people of color with this video and my song.
“I also wanted to touch up on the whole tanning thing when I was in the video with you [Nicki]I didn’t have a fake tan. I was in Antigua for three weeks before this.
“I’m really lucky that as a white girl I’m so tan. Leigh-Anne even told me in the group: ‘Are you sure you’re not mixed race because you go darker than me!’
“My hair is naturally curly, I got it from my dad – I wanted to get a wig that emulated the same texture as my hair and I didn’t really feel like I was doing anything wrong. “
Earlier in the stream, Jesse was laughed at as Nikki brutally put Leigh-Anne down – calling the new mom a “clown” and accusing her of being “jealous and insecure”.
She said: “When you try to bring someone down because you see that they are constantly trying and advancing their career, you are a clown. And let me tell you, a lot here in America All women are. Get that tan and big lips.
“If you’ve ever done business with someone you send a text message to when they try and do something else, trying to end them – you already finished your f***ing yourself You won’t go anywhere because your heart is not right.
I’m really lucky to be so tall as a fair girl. My hair is naturally curly.
“Unless someone is pretending they’re a race they’re not and lying, sweetheart, text them and elevate them above your f***ing a** because when you clown are s**t I want to talk to you and talk to you like you’re a clown.”
While Jessie nodded quietly in agreement, Nikki said: “You don’t have to try to ruin anyone – you’re in this women’s group and don’t talk about it for 10 years and now you’ve seen He has a video coming out with Sister? Print out those text messages and give him your a**.
“If you want a solo career, just say it – you can go out and do your music, you don’t have to attack anyone else. It screams insecurity, you are jealous – only jealous people Do things like this, and now you look like one big jealous burden.”
In addition to calling Jesse “Blackfish”, Leigh-Anne’s alleged messages also claimed that Jesse “blocked and cut” his Little Mix bandmates.
An insider told us earlier today: “Leigh-Anne chatted with Jesse, trying to explain why she was upset and why it might be offensive. She felt she had to address it while making a documentary on racism. Would have to do, but it clearly fell on the deaf ear.
When you joker**t I have to talk to you and talk to you like you’re a joker.
“For Jesse to now claim that it’s never been mentioned to him before is really rude. It’s upsetting that he hasn’t taken it on board.”
Jesse stated that he has only faced accusations of “blackfishing” since leaving the group, insisting: “The whole time I was in Little Mix, I never got to. Then I came out [the band] And people were suddenly saying this.”
But a source close to the band claims that even Little Mix’s management warned him about it when he braided his hair three years ago.
The messaging scandal came after the Little Mix girls unfollowed Jesse on Instagram all three weekends — as does an account belonging to Perry’s dog Hatchi.
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