Sampa The Great Takes the Music Industry to Task on 'Time's Up'
The artist boldly calls out the exploitation of Black artists in the music industry with a stunning, 90s hip hop-inspired visual.
Zambian-born, Melbourne-based MC Sampa the Great returns with her latest track "Times Up," featuring fellow Melbourne-based artist Krwon. The track is the latest single from her 2019 album The Return.
"Times Up" is a bold indictment of racism in the music industry. "Allyship should never be performative," said the artist about the track—echoing the thoughts of many Black people across industries in light of global Back Lives Matter protests.
"As we continue past blackout day, all music orgs/labels should be put to task in bringing forward their initiatives for real change in the industry." The artist criticizes the way in which the industry exploits Black art and artists for profit.
She released the song along with a striking visual which features her and collaborator Krown in spacey settings and eclectic outfits. Directed by filmmaker Sanjay De Silva, the video draws inspiration from the quirky, experimental hip hop music videos of 90s and also reflects the anti-establishment energy of the song's themes. Silva previously worked with Sampa the Great on the music video for her award-winning song "Final Form."
The artist also teamed up with Melbourne-based mental health organization Pola Psychology to address the mental health needs of African youth within the city. "At a time like this, it's important to let my friends and the wider African community know that this support exists and our health matters," said the artist of the initiative.
Watch the music video for "Times Up" above and revisit her critically-acclaimed album The Return below.