It’s easy to find bands and brands plastered all over t-shirts in the majority of clothes shops, but certain groups of fans across pop culture still take issue with people donning their favourites without evidence they’re a ‘real’ fan.
Women are often subject to this criticism when it comes to band t-shirts. From over a decade ago - when a teenage Miley Cyrus had to justify her reasoning for wearing merchandise from bands like Iron Maiden - to more recently when the Kardashians have fallen prey to similar remarks.
It’s an odd qualm if you really think about it. Nobody wearing a NASA branded Primark hoodie is professing to be joining the space program any time soon.
TikTok star Zaria was met with eyeroll-inducing criticism from metalheads after wearing a Metallica t-shirt in a couple of her videos. In one comment she was asked to name at least three Metallica songs, presumably because some audience members couldn’t fathom that a female R’n’B singer would be able to do so.
She took matters into her own hands and produced a brilliant response that has since accumulated over 400,000 views, and growing due to coverage from the likes of Billboard magazine.
The response video is simply amazing.
“Really, only three?” she asks in the TikTok’s intro. The singer barely breaks a sweat in her hilarious response, playing across riffs from four of their songs with total ease. She covers classics such as Master of Puppets and Enter Sandman with total synchronicity.
“Social media doesn’t do a good job of showing you the full range of who someone is. I am a huge Metallica fan, I grew up playing guitar. Just because I sing R’n’B music, doesn’t mean I can’t like metal.”
In a grand finale, Zaria also finger taps - a skill that frustrates even the most established of players - to the song One for anybody willing to criticise her “for not doing leads”.
Zaria is taking further ownership over the criticism by campaigning to get her favourite band to notice the covers on her Instagram.