As we’re held up in our homes under an indefinite national quarantine, many of our plans have sadly come to a grinding halt. There are still businesses we can support from a distance, like the Black establishments Blavity previously reported on.
And there are still Black creators whose grind isn’t on hold, despite the world being at a standstill.
1. Childish Gambino’s "3.15.20"
Donald Glover, also known by his musical alter ego Childish Gambino, snuck in a surprise album on March 15, which was deleted only 12 hours after its release as Blavity previously reported. Don’t be discouraged though, the album was uploaded again days later with the song titles replaced by timestamps in hopes to encourage listeners to fully listen to the work, according to Genius.
2. jessica Care moore’s "We Want Our Bodies Back"
Jessica Care moore is an OG of modern Black poetry. Her work has always been centered in Black womanhood with a hip-hop undercurrent. According to Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith, Moore’s We Want Our Bodies Back is “a lyric encyclopedia, a psalm book, a conflagration of fire and fierce black joy. And jessica Care moore is the 21st Century poet warrior America desperately needs." This latest work will be published on March 31 under HarperCollins.
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My book arrived in the mail and its gorgeous!!! I am so honored to be the first black woman poet on @harpercollins since Gwendolyn Brooks. This collection is my strongest so far. I have poems for Sonia Sanchez, poems for Ruby Dee, poems for Ntozake, title poem for Sandra Bland. @amistadbooks ???????? @serendipitylit @jessicacaremoor @bradwalrond #wewantourbodiesback Order online today!!! In bookstores everywhere #march31 #poet #author #frenchflaps #womenwriters #poetbeforeinstagram 😉 #flapsonflaps Cover art by @cesar_does_it Amazon link to buy in bio! Thank you @talibkweli @bootsriley @tracy.k.smith for your beautiful blurbs. We couldn’t put everyone on the back…thank you for having mine. #honored
3. The Weeknd’s “After Hours”
The Weeknd released his fourth studio album on March 20 as we were in the throes of the pandemic. But, his cinematic visuals and trippy R&B are just the tickets to put us in a dream state or, at least, kill some time.
4. Michael Arceneaux’s "I Don’t Want To Die Poor"
Arceneaux's 2018 memoir I Can't Date Jesus was a New York Times bestseller and placed the Howard alum on the literary radar. His hilarious, sarcastic insight is a perfect voice for Black millennials who are “over it.” I Don’t Want To Die Poor keenly discusses the perils of private student loan debt and is an “unforgettable and relatable examination about what it’s like leading a life that often feels out of your control,” according to publisher Simon & Schuster.
What happens after college? Paying off student loans! Michael Arceneaux (@youngsinick) has a new essay collection (I DON'T WANT TO DIE POOR) coming 4/7, which details his debt woes. Have a financial question for Michael? Ask it below & he might answer in an upcoming video! pic.twitter.com/7fnzaqrsAX
— Atria Books (@AtriaBooks) January 2, 2020
5. PartyNextDoor’s, "PARTYMOBILE"
OVO Sound’s PartyNextDoor hasn’t dropped an album since 2016’s PartyNextDoor 3. The elusive artist with moody, chillwave alt R&B graced us with another classic on Friday with PARTYMOBILE, with the track "Believe It" that features thee Rihanna. The artist’s work is typically best for relaxing at home by yourself, and his timing couldn’t have lined up better.
6. Thundercat’s "It Is What It Is"
The multi-instrumentalist and fashion gawd Thundercat is offering up It Is What It Is on April 3 so that we can jazz-funk ourselves around the house. Thundercat has a reputation for his masterful live shows, collaborations with Flying Lotus and features. One such feature on Kendrick Lamar’s “These Walls” earned the artist a Grammy. In these uncertain times, it, most certainly, is what it is.
7. Terry McMillan’s "It’s Not All Downhill From Here"
Waiting To Exhale and How Stella Got Her Groove Back are undeniable canons in Black women’s empowerment, and that’s what Terry McMillan has been providing since the late 80s. McMillan is arguably the godmother of Black girl magic as most of her works feature a modern, Black female protagonist. With all this downtime, why not curl up with a good book? McMillan’s new work, It’s Not All Downhill From Here
releases on March 31.
— O The Oprah Magazine (@oprahmagazine) March 10, 2020
While it's rather difficult to not let the current state of affairs get you down, art can make it a bit more bearable.