Kane Brown Talks Getting Bullied For Being Part Black
Kane Brown is blowing up in the country music world after winning big recently at the AMA’s for the favorite country song, country album, and for best male country artist. It’s been a minute since a Black man was honored in country music (remember Hootie and the Blowfish?), but the thing is, Kane says he never knew he was BLACK.
He was born to a white mom and a part Cherokee, part black dad who was out of his life, Brown admitted recently to PEOPLE that he was once confused about his racial identity.
“I’m biracial; I didn’t know that until I was 7 or 8 years old,” the country newcomer, 25, tells PEOPLE in this week’s issue, opening up about his amazing journey to Nashville stardom. “I thought I was full white, which honestly, I can’t even really say because I didn’t see colors.”
Here is Kane as a baby.
Around this age, he says kids called him the N-word.
“I found out that I was biracial and I still wasn’t thinking anything of it, but then I started getting called the N-word,” he says. “I didn’t even know what it meant. I learned what it meant, and that’s when it started affecting me. I got in fights over it when I was little.”
Kane says he did nothing to combat the name-calling, he just “got over it”…
“I just kind of got over it,” says Brown, who has since channeled his troubles into his music. “They just made me stronger. I guess it was God. Hopefully I can help kids and they can end up being stronger in the long run, too. Once I got to high school and hit my growth spurt, nobody really messed with me anymore,” the “What Ifs” singer reveals. “I just kept to myself. I kept my circle small. I had my friends that I knew wouldn’t do anything to hurt me and I would also stand up for them, and those are still my friends today.”
These days, the 25-year-old singer keeps an even smaller circle. Here he is with his wife, Katelyn.
Despite being a great country artist, being interracially married to Katelyn and not “seeing color” he STILL gets called the N-word online.
“When I first got into country, I started getting some of those comments like, ‘He’s an N-word.’ Stuff like that,” admits Brown, who married music management student and fellow singer Katelyn Jae in October. “I used to screenshot it and put it on Twitter, like, ‘There still racism in the world.’ But I didn’t get into country music just to prove a point. I try to stay away from all negativity.”