Charles Hamilton and Rita Ora Pay Homage to the Civil Rights Movement in “New York Raining” Video
Charles Hamilton has probably felt misplaced in time for a while now. The eccentric Harlemite was probably a few years ahead of the curve when he broke through in the middle 2000s, using the rap blog world as his chosen arena. But now, after a long absence and readjustment, Hamilton is back, and his scope has widened more than ever. In his new video for "New York Raining," Charles and guest Rita Ora hearken back to 1950s- and '60s-era civil rights movements, complete with unjust policing to tear apart a happy relationship. It's a carefully made video, one that gives the song a new dimension, having already been played on the contemporary Fox drama Empire.
Charles on his choice to pursue a socially relevant vision for the video:
With the recent increase in reports of police brutality, I feel strongly about vividly depicting the struggle we as African Americans historically had to go through to reach equality, an equality that is eroding in modern times. We as African Americans cannot forget about the sacrifices made by Rosa Parks, Dr. King and many of our foremothers and forefathers. We cannot allow our quest for "the finer things" to blind us from our roots. Granted we were once kings and queens, decked out in the jewels of The Nile, but we were faced with an unforeseen adversity. Our resiliency bespeaks our strength and needs to be a mainstay in the minds of this and future generations.
Every so often, a music video is spawned based on the climate of society. The video for "New York Raining" walks on the path of Public Enemy, Talib Kweli and others by creatively depicting a simple yet poignant message: Black lives matter.
In the video, I am a part of the Civil Rights movement, where I fall in love with a fellow freedom fighter. But as we all know, love requires time, devotion and surrender. With time against us, our devotion to the struggle, and the ability to surrender completely gone, the love affair depicted is seen as forbidden. But the strength of love overcomes it all.
In additino to "New York Raining," over the weekend Hamilton stopped by BBC Radio 1 to deliver a freestyle that the network has dubbed, appropriately, Fire In The Booth. Listen to that in its entirety below:
Related: Download Charles Hamilton’s Entire Discography for Free
An Anonymous Person Leaked Two Unreleased Albums Of Charles Hamilton
Charles Hamilton Raps and Produces Live at SOBs in New York City: Show Recap
Charles Hamilton Signs With Republic Records