Tuesday’s Tunes: Jamila Woods Speaks Truth With ‘ZORA’

This soulful Chicago native's latest release is a tribute to walking your own path and going with the flow.

In the wake of Jamila Woods‘ highly anticipated sophomore album, LEGACY! LEGACY!, expected later this year, the poetic Chicago native has released a powerful track which pays tribute to the influential African-American author, Zora Neale Hurston. “ZORA” is a life-giving R&B tune that describes the process of being on the come-up and stopping at no obstacle as you gather your own wisdom and self-knowledge.

The track flows with an insistent yet smooth percussive rhythm, a vintage hip hip beat that is propelled by the modernity of eclectic neosoul influences and fiery lyricism that is crowned by Woods’ unique vocals. It’s safe to say the new album, LEGACY! LEGACY!, will also be filled to the brim with her specific brand of soul – though the tracks themselves will each be named after influential figures from black culture, among them Eartha Kitt, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Sun Ra, James Baldwin, and Octavia Butler.

Regarding this latest track, it encompasses the unapologetically bold yet calculated and truth-seeking attitude of the late Zora Neale Hurston. In a letter to a fellow writer that just so happens to have been written on this exact day, March 5th, in the year 1943, Hurston concluded:

You are right in assuming that I am indifferent to the pattern of things. I am. I have never liked stale phrases and bodyless courage. I have the nerve to walk my own way, however hard, in my search for reality, rather than climb upon the rattling wagon of wishful illusions.

Fire. Here’s to more boundary pushing visionaries, past, present and future. Go forth, seek truth, and then speak it, however it looks. Take the lead in your own unique form of expression!