Major world events like the Vietnam War and the civil rights movement have given us some of the most memorable songs in music. There’s something about a world altering event that inspires our artists to create and the murder of George Floyd and the growing awareness surrounding anti-Black racism is no different. Here are eight Black Lives Matter/George Floyd inspired songs to get you through.
TOBi feat. ft. Haviah Mighty, Shad, Jazz Cartier, & Ejji Smith // 24 (Toronto Remix)
This is hip-hop as it was intended to be. A message, great bars and a great beat. This song and video was released before the murder of George Floyd, but is still so relevant. From the bars to the sound and artistry, It reminds me of the Toronto I grew up in back in the 90’s. There’s elite lyrical ability being displayed from beginning to end. We need to see more Canadian artists come together like this for the culture and for a cause.
Timal Garnier // Fallin’ World
Quebec artist Timal Garnier dropped “Fallin’ World”, a bilingual anthem address the issue of racism. Aside from the powerful and fiery cover art, he quotes some famous lines from Martin Luther King Jr.
Kalix Breezy // No Justice No Peace
I absolutely love the video for Kalix Breezy’s “No Justice No Peace”, from the cinematography to the dance moves. According to the rapper, songwriter and co-producer, this song is not about politics, hate or violence but about uniting and making changes that would better the world we live in. The song reflects his pride and the soul of a Black man who is tired of seeing that after all the revolutions and changes that occurred over time never really eliminated the systematic racism and the oppression experienced by the Black community.
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Dip Black // Son Rise
“Son Rise” from Dip Black is set to be released this Friday, but he’s given us a little preview on Instagram. Known for his intensity as a rapper and performer, it’s refreshing to see him change it up and direct that emotion towards a serious issue like racism. We look forward to hearing the full song this Friday.
Lecrae // Deep End
This is a different Lecrae than we’re used to and we like it. On “Deep End”, Lecrae gets vulnerable about how he feels about the recent racial injustice and his wrestling with God over this issue. He has been receiving some flack from Christians over his new direction in recent years, but we’re all for it.
Anderson.Paak // Lockdown
As we’d expect from Anderson.Paak, this is protest music with a groove. With lyrics like, “You should’ve downtown…” the song is literally talking about the anti-racism march in downtown Los Angeles. In the video, we see a face mask wearing Anderson.Paak and the crew walking around post protest, bruises and all.
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DJ Prosper // Strong Black Man
DJ Prosper and Melly Mel put their own spin on Beyoncé, Saint Jhn and Wizkid song “Brown Skin Girl” called “Strong Black Man” it features footage from the anti-Black racism march in Ottawa. The song and video are a tribute to George Floyd with the caption stating, “Dedication to the ones that are feeling tired. In hope to uplift and keep the motivation to strive for greatness.”
Joy Oladokun // Who Do I Turn To?
Joy Oladokun has been dropping a flurry of songs since the murder of George Floyd, including “Mercy”, “Breathe Again”, and our featured song “Who Do I Turn Do?” On these songs the folk/R&B singer-songwriter gives voice to the emotions a lot of us are feeling, demonstrating a refreshing balance of vulnerability and bravery. If you need help processing your emotions or you just need a good cry, just put these songs on repeat and let Joy Oladokun speak to you.