Leigh-Anne Pinnock has revealed that she’s made her solo creative team “60 per cent black” after years of feeling isolated in the music industry.
The former Little Mix singer, who became a part of the girl group on 2011’s X Factor and went on to win three Brit Awards and achieve five UK No 1 singles with them, said she spent years being the “only black person in the room”.
In a new interview with Rolling Stone UK, Pinnock, who has now gone solo, added: “Now I’m on my own, I have the control to make sure 60 per cent of my team is black, ’cos why not?”
“Music is so heavily influenced by black culture, so why are all the people at the top white?
“I can control these little things. I don’t have to be the only black person in the room now, that just doesn’t have to be my reality.”
Pinnock was in the band with Jesy Nelson, who departed from the group in December 2020, and continued as a trio with Perrie Edwards and Jade Thirlwall before they went on hiatus in 2022.
In 2021, Pinnock shared her struggles as the only black member of Little Mix in the BBC Three documentary Leigh-Anne: Race, Pop & Power.
She discussed racism from fans and how isolated and insecure she felt when not seeing black people in powerful positions in the music business.
She added to Rolling Stone UK about dealing with racism: “As the time went on, the feeling wasn’t right, and I’d be thinking, ‘Was that racist?’
“Just little things I was questioning, but also feeling quite alone with it… I just pushed it down and down and down. I think that’s why I’m still trying to heal from it.
“It was so weirdly traumatic without even knowing it, because I was just getting on with it. I was still smiling, still living my life, but this thing was just there all the time.”
Pinnock’s debut album is slated for release next year.