Jidenna Shows The Classic Man Is Also A Rapping Man (Video)

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Nigerian-American artist Jidenna has proven himself to be one of the most original artists of his generation. With the success of his 2015 singles “Classic Man” and “Yoga,” the Wisconsin-born singer has helped make Janelle Monáe’s Wondaland Records a hotbed for recording artists who are unique as they are talented. Earlier this year, he was nominated for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration alongside collaborator Roman GianArthur for the platinum-selling “Classic Man,” but lost to Kendrick Lamar (who is featured on the song’s remix).

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To date, Jidenna has not released a solo project, but there are reports that will change later this year with Long Live the Chief this Fall. Today (August 18), he releases a compelling video for “Chief Don’t Run,” a song that showcases Jidenna’s skills as an MC without any of his previously demonstrated singing abilities. The song is an exercise in bravado, replete with boasts of success and accomplishment, but its video is also very powerful. It depicts the struggles of single motherhood, tensions between people of color and police, with Jidenna playing multiple roles. By the time its over, his African heritage makes a vibrant display of power, and a tense situation is diffused.

Jidenna will be performing on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” on August 25.