Two legendary forces in hip-hop connect today to deliver a socially conscious anthem over a funky soundtrack, "The People." Chuck D encourages everyone to come together in face of society's ills, a message that seems especially relevant in the wake of the protests in Ferguson and the injustice of Mike Brown's death. The song was actually supposed to drop in the summer, but it resonates even more today.
De La Soul explained on their Soundcloud, "Originally 'The People' was supposed to drop in June, around the same time the Chuck D/Hot 97/Rosenberg situation took place. We chose to hold off and not add fuel to any fires. Our next aim was for a Black Friday release. Coincidentally, the Ferguson tragedy took place and now the non-indictment verdict. Somehow this song was destined to be a part of something more than just dropping a joint. We hope it will lend itself to something positive in these difficult times."
They also speak on the idea for the record: "The idea for the song came from a couple of samples, and the track's vibe is earnest and has a pressing tone to it. The lyrics are commentaries of our struggles and successes, our weaknesses and strengths... the experiences... and trials and tribulations we have faced as human beings, a race, and as individuals."
The song can be downloaded for free at De La Soul's website.
We are the ones with the same childhood dreams
But adulthood brings nightmares and screams
We be the raw excuse to slang
I mean, we the people they stereotype for gangs