anderson .paak testifies with new “king james” verse

March 16, 2019
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Ever since Lebron took on his royal moniker, while greatly expanding the idea of how a late stage capitalism-era superstar athlete engages with America’s politics and social policies, there’s been cultural space for a song such as the one Anderson .Paak dropped on Friday. 

Wisely, .Paak’s “King James” is not simply a great old-school-R&B-jam paean to a living basketball legend and Black activist, and more a set of uplifting verses about a community fighting injustices levied against itself and those who are dispossessed. It’s .Paak getting his best Curtis and Marvin on, shouting out not just Lebron but Colin, threatening to jump any wall that’s gonna be built, and bringing the people with him. More than anything, it’s a rallying cry. “You’re coming with me!” the singer repeats again and again on a chorus filled less with bomb-throwing bravado than soulful rebellion. Yup, we’re on our way.

Anderson .Paak’s new album, Ventura, is coming in mid-April.