Published Feb 19, 2021In celebration of Black History Month, Just John, Charmaine, Amaal and Andye covered songs by Missy Elliott, Queen Latifah, India.Arie and Michael Jackson for the first annual Black Alliance compilation, and the Warner Music Canada artists have now shared accompanying performance videos.
As previously reported, Charmaine covered Queen Latifah's "U.N.I.T.Y" and Just John interpreted Missy Elliott's "My Struggles," while Amaal covered India.Arie's "Brown Skin" and Andye took on Michael Jackson's "Man in the Mirror."
You can watch all four Spencer Edwards-directed performance videos below.
"I covered ["U.N.I.T.Y"] because I'm all for black empowerment as a whole," Charmaine said of her cover choice in a statement. "Queen Latifah did an amazing job creating a record with a message regarding Black men and women supporting, as well as loving one another respectfully."
Just John explained that he chose "My Struggles" because "Missy was so ahead of her time. She paved the way with her sound with Timbaland and you get delivery, originality, style, literal movies in every music video. Missy has made and continues to have an everlasting imprint on culture in so many ways. That's the kind of artist I want my career to be like, iconic, experimental, timeless and always pushing the agenda. The energy of her work with Timbaland reminds me of the kinship myself and Dom Dias have as rapper/producer heavy collaborators."
Of her "Brown Skin" cover, Amaal expressed, "The melodies are so captivating, and the poetic lyrics are powerful! It epitomizes self-love, empowerment, and the beauty of melanin skin. I've always gravitated towards songs that are both anthemic with inspirational messaging combined with a backdrop of melodic chords/vocals that bring you to tears and this song truly does it best! "
In selecting "Man in the Mirror," Andye reflected on trying to master Jackson's dance moves in his younger years, and felt its motivational message was "a perfect fit" for our current moment.
Black Alliance Vol. 1 also features Myles Castello's cover of Sam Cooke's "A Change Is Gonna Come" and Jacksoul's take on Bill Withers' "Use Me" featuring late frontman Haydain Neale.
Stream and purchase Black Alliance Vol. 1