Juneteenth marks a triumph in history, but it also reminds us that there is still much to be done. Discrimination and inequality still exist, and it’s up to each of us to continue to work towards a better future.
Although it’s a holiday that can evoke both sadness and joy, Juneteenth provides the opportunity to celebrate the strength, unity, and cultures of people from Black communities around the world.
While Juneteenth was only recognized as a federal holiday in the U.S. in 2021, it has been celebrated by people around the world for more than a century.
It commemorates the day when the last African American slaves were liberated in the United States, on June 19, 1865—more than two-and-a-half years after the Emancipation Proclamation.
But today, we’re grateful to live in a more free world where Black people are able to create content that touches people’s hearts, makes us laugh, and inspires justice. Perhaps most importantly, and certainly for the first time in history on this scale, members of the Black community are able to do this on their own terms. That is something worth celebrating in and of itself.
In honor of Juneteenth, we present to you five creators from the Black community who are leading the creator economy in a variety of ways. If you aren’t yet following these talented creators, this is the sign you’ve been waiting for.
D’Angelo Wallace arrived on the scene in early 2018 with an unassuming video upload entitled “i tried following a WLOP digital art tutorial (with adequate results).” In it, a lesson; one of many Wallace would grace us with over his recent-yet-profound tenure as a creator so far.
Level-headed and thought-provoking, Wallace emerged as a voice worth listening to for people of every time and creed. His poignant commentary and critiques of culture, or as he might put it, “anything I want,” have shaped public discourse around important topics ranging from media analysis to social dynamics.
Every one of Wallace’s videos is an elegant exercise in critical thinking, and adding his perspective into your life will broaden your horizons and deepen your understanding of the world we live in.
Smokin’ and Grillin with AB
“This is the Filet-O-Fish McDonald’s wish they made. Let’s get it.” The man’s got a point. There’s a certain je ne sais quoi that cannot be reproduced at mass scale, least of all in cooking. It’s lacking a critical ingredient, one that the Michelin star-worthy chef of Smokin’ and Grillin’ with AB pours on with generosity: heart.
In his own words, chef Aaron Brown “takes the mystery out of cooking” and teaches his passion and his art to millions of viewers across the globe. Set to the backdrop of smooth tracks and guided by Brown’s soothing voice, Smokin’ and Grillin with AB will teach you how to prepare all the dishes your soul craves most, like smothered chicken, banana pudding, stuffed peppers—and everything in between.
Keeping a clean and organized space is a job with no beginning and no end. They say cleanliness is a state of mind, and to that end, college student Lexi Vee’s positive content is living proof. The perfect backdrop to getting your own life in order and keeping up on the requirements of day-to-day life, Vee’s content is like having your best friend right there with you to keep things interesting and connected.
Authentic and genuine, Lexi Vee is the perfect inspiration for everything from styling curly hair, to cleaning your room, to studying for finals. By turning chores into meditation and errands into mini adventures, Lexi Vee’s uploads are gentle and welcome reminders that at the end of the day, the little things are the big things.
Jellysmack is proud to present our Jellysmack original channel, Crowned Ladies. Crowned Ladies is a beauty and self care channel that covers everything from makeup tutorials to hair styling and latest product line releases from most loved industry brands.
The channel spotlights incredible Black stylists and beauticians sharing their favorite beauty tips and tricks. The tutorials are complemented with salon chair talk that covers everything from little known history facts to the latest gossip about today’s chart-topping musicians or whatever else if on the ladies’ minds. Now in its third year, you can find Crowned Ladies content on YouTube, Facebook, and Snapchat.
We Honor and Celebrate Juneteenth
While we commemorate the achievements of those who paved the way, it’s important to note that we have not “arrived.” There is still work to be done, distances to go, bridges to be built, and healing to transpire. We recognize these accomplishments as a reminder that we can, and have, made progress.