Joey Bada$$’ Performance Is A Powerful Reminder That This Is OUR America (Video)
On Friday (April 7), Joey Bada$$ will release what is shaping up to be his most brazen work to date: All Amerikkkan Bada$$. The Brooklyn, New York MC has always had a political bent to his work, but it seems in recent months he has taken advantage of every opportunity to release message-driven statements, whether on wax or in interviews.
In what may be his first televised performance in support of the new LP, Joey used the stage at The Late Show with Stephen Colbert to once again provoke the thoughts of those listening. Last night (April 3), he performed “Land of the Free,” arguably his most political single to date. Draped in an American flag stylized the same way as the single’s artwork (notably, in the form of red and blue paisley, symbolic of Bloods and Crips flags/colors), he delivered a mature, centered act that allowed his words to be understood and absorbed. Musically, it was a slightly stripped-down version, and Joey’s breath control and use of the stage rivals those of artists many years his senior.
With lyrics including “Obama just wasn’t enough” and “Donald Trump is not equipped to take this country over,” “Land of the Free” is no doubt a modern-day protest record. While Colbert’s show is certainly a left-leaning program, this remains a tumultuous time for people of color and millions of Americans threatened by the administration’s policies. Having garnered three-million nightly viewers (and averaging upwards of a million on any given night), The Late Show is arguably one of the country’s biggest stages. That makes Joey Bada$$ more than just a rapper performing his latest record on TV. For those watching who may not listen to Hip-Hop, nor care to listen to it after this broadcast, this 22-year-old kid from Flatbush let them know that the movement for justice lives.