Watch Murs’s “GBKW”

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Murs released a video for his single “GBKW” (God Bless Kanye West).

The title of the song is a bit of a misnomer. The track is not really about Kanye at all, but about the stress and dangers of being a young, Black man in America. Murs takes us back to the storytelling days of hip-hop, channeling his inner Slick Rick, and delivering a three-verse song that acts as a modern-day parable. The first verse outlines difficulties a young, Black man might face from gang members in his own community. The second verse imagines the same young man accosted by Mexican gang bangers. In the final verse the young man decides to get a gun for protection, but this time his antagonists are the police. It doesn’t end well for the young man, but it was bound to happen; as Murs says, “This is a story with three different plots/In any of the three the hero could have been shot.”

The video is in black and white which matches the somber lyrics. The visuals mimic the lyrics which describe the plot in detail. We follow the young man as he grows progressively more desperate, eventually psyching himself up in the mirror with his newly-obtained gun. Every so often Murs appears in the video, sometimes in a “GBKW” shirt, always with his bushy beard and large fro. He stares directly into the camera as he raps, challenging the listener with his earnestness.

“GBKW” is the first video off of Murs’s new album “Captain California.” The album is available for pre-order now. It will be available everywhere on March 10.

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