Jay Z released a new song addressing police brutality against black Americans late on Thursday, July 7, in the wake of the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile.
Beyoncé's husband also released a statement that explained he had started recording the song, "Spiritual," over a year ago, after the death of black teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, in August 2014, but sadly feels it's time the song was heard.
It's Jay Z's first material since 2013's Magna Carta….Holy Grail. The song has been released via Tidal but is available to nonsubscribers too.
"I made this song a year or so ago, I never got to finish it," the 46-year-old musician wrote in his accompanying statement. "Punch (TDE) told me I should drop it when Mike Brown died, sadly I told him, 'this issue will always be relevant.' I'm hurt that I knew his death wouldn't be the last……."
"I'm saddened and disappointed in THIS America — we should be further along. WE ARE NOT," he added.
"I trust in God and know everything that happens is for our greatest good, but man…..it's tough right now," he went on. "Blessings to all the families that have lost loved ones to police brutality. -j."
Jay Z also quoted Frederick Douglass, a social reformer.
A demonstration against the deaths of Castile and Sterling in Dallas on Thursday night resulted in five police officers losing their lives as snipers opened fire on police.
Jay Z's lyrics include the words, "I am not poison, no, I am not poison. Just a boy from the hood that got my hands in the air. In despair, don't shoot, I just wanna do good."
He also refers to his daughter, Blue Ivy, in the song. "Can't even raise my little daughter, my little Carter. We call her Blue cause it's sad that, how can I be a dad that, I never had that."
Listen to the track below.