Five political music videos that went viral before “Lavender”

Snoop Doggy Dog is no fan of Donald Trump. Throughout the 2016 election campaign, he spoke openly against the new US president and decided to make his voice heard through a music video released 50 days into his administration.

The release is a remix of the song, ‘Lavender’, and features BADBADNOTGOOD and Kayranada. During the course of the video, Donald Trump is literally portrayed as a clown in a suit, who gets a gun pointed directly at his head by Snoop. The song also grapples with issues such as police aggression towards black men. Snoop Dogg is not the first rapper to get political in a music video however.

  • Kendrick Lamar – Alright


The video for ‘Alright,’ a track featured in Kendrick’s To Pimp a Butterfly, is a visual masterpiece. Shot in gritty black and white and full of interesting imagery, the exact meaning behind the track is disputed, although for a time, it was adopted as the unofficial anthem for the Black Lives Matter movement. Once again, police brutality is a subject discussed.

  • M.I.A. – Borders


English-Tamil rapper, M.I.A, tackled the ongoing refugee crisis through a striking music video for the song, ‘Borders.’ Her conventional glamorous appearance and honeydew lyrics are jarringly juxtaposed against a background of refugees on boats, climbing fences and generally looking very desperate. “What’s up with that?” is the refrain she sings, when asking why nothing is being done to help these people.

  • Run the jewels – Early


This video is an animation with a style similar to that of the graphic novel, V for Vendetta. In it, a hard-hitting tale of police brutality and maltreatmentofAfrican Americans is told. Additionally, the surveillance state, the injustices of capitalism and rioting, are all topics addressed through the video.

  • Jeezy – My President


In this track, Young Jeezy and Nas surprised many fans by collaborating to make a hit symbol. The pair had been beefing since 2006 when Young Jeezy took offence to some of the content in Nas’Hip Hop is Dead album. Working together to make this track, the duo expressed their elation at the election of a black president, Barack Obama. The video captures the feeling of hope experienced by many different groups across the United States following Obama’s election victory in 2008.

  • Eminem – Mosh


In this animated music video, Slim Shady’s ruthless critique of the United States’ military industrial complex is brought to life. Specifically, Eminem rails against George W Bush’s decision to escalate operations in Iraq, and at the US population for electing such a leader. At the end of the video, an animated Slim Shady leads an angry crowd toward George Bush in protest.

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