Following my previous blog post listing my top 10 anti-racist songs for 2019, below are 10 more inspirational pieces, with strong anti-racist sentiments, released this year from artists spanning various genres. Lyrics contain some explicit language.
1. Kano's 'Hoodies All Summer'
My favourite album of the year so far – a collection of songs so powerful that I have decided to include the whole record as a recommendation to anyone concerned about racism in the UK and beyond. Kano has produced a searing social commentary on what it is to be Black in Britain today over a soulful melting pot of genre spanning sounds ranging from hip hop to dancehall, garage to grime. This vital soundtrack for our times will speak volumes to anyone who has felt marginalised or ostracised from mainstream society – an instant classic.
(S.Y.M) They want throw banana skins at John Barnsey's They tell us to go fuckin' back to our own country But they won't even give us back our own countries Every entrance to a door, has a footprint left by the ones that came before”
2. Frank Turner's 'Sister Rosetta'
Tribute to the “Godmother of rock and roll” who broke down barriers of racism and sexism in the music industry during the 1940s and 1950s.
Don't let her be forgotten In a church in Arkansas Remember her teaching the cotton club The glory of the Lord Don't let her be forgotten Rosetta deserves more Remember her teaching a nation On a train platform in England In 1964
3. Rapsody's 'Iman'
Taken from the North Carolina rappers new album, Eve, which is self described as a “love letter to all Black women”.
Go ahead and treat yourself better You're worth much more, so much more You better treat yourself better You're worth much more
4. Kele Okereke's 'Jungle Bunny'
The Bloc Party frontman deals with daily racial anxieties that pervade modern society on the first single from his upcoming album 2042.
The police man said he'd been a fan As he slapped the cuffs onto my wrist The security did not fuck around When they bounced my black as from the club
5. Chance the Rapper's 'Zanies and Fools' (feat. Nichi Minaj)
Perhaps the most conscious track from the Chicago rappers debut album, The Big Day.
So they legitimized us, but behind us It's still black folks at the back door still For every small increment liberated, our women waited
6. The Meringers' 'America'
Scranton punks, The Menzingers, express their anger towards the current American administration in typically rollicking fashion. Accompanied by a fantastic video too.
Oh, ain't it a shame what we choose to ignore What kind of monsters did our parents vote for? Lately I feel like I'm in puppet vichy, france tryin' to teach the devil how to dance
7. Raphael Saadiq's 'Riker's Island Redux' (feat. Danial J. Watts)
A devastating exploration on pain and loss, Raphael Saadiq’s new album, Jimmy Lee, focuses on the death of his brother. This particular cut from the record addresses racism with a poetic monologue from actor, Daniel J Watts.
No matter how much I cow tow tap dance and jump through a bunch of hoops I'll still be the one who winds up in a jumpsuit I'll still be the one who winds up with the gun wounds
8. Little Simz's '101 FM'
London MC, Little Simz, is in reflective mood on this track from her critically acclaimed record, GREY Area.
Tears in my eyes real tears when Ken got nicked (Ken got nabbed) Tore everyone apart but the law don't give two shits (Don't give two fucks) Just another black boy in the system doing time in bin (True) But he had a heart full of gold, good intent with a smile so big
9. Skepta's 'Glow in the Dark' (feat. Wizkid)
North London grime pioneer, Skepta, followed up his Mercury Prize winning album, Konnichiwa, with the superb Ignorance is Bliss in May. This track showcases his political side with support from Nigerian singer/songwriter, Wizkid.
I knew what it was to be black way before I was on the GQ cover How you gonna question me about colour? What you know about Nelson Mandela? Man, I get anti as ever Yeah, I can do serious, I can do mean Tell a supremacist that I'm supreme
10. The Killers' 'Land of the Free'
Not particularly known for their grand political statements, bona fide rock and roll superstars, The Killers, offer a heartfelt lament inspired by events under the current American administration and past events in the US.