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WATCH HERE-On Juneteenth, Jake Clemons releases a new music-video for his 2022 "Born Like Me" single

June 19, 2024

In commemoration of Juneteenth, Jake Clemons has released a new music-video for his 2022 single, "Born Like Me." The single was written by Clemons, and he was joined on the track by Allison Russell, members of the Highlander Research and Education Center, and Tom Morello. It remains available for purchase and/or streaming on all major platforms.

The new music-video was shot at Jake’s high-school alma mater, The Virginia Governor’s School for the Arts (GSA) in Norfolk, VA. It was written and directed by GSA alumnus Daniel Russell (Missy Elliot, SZA, Cardi B, Khalid and Jason Derulo/Meghan Trainor.) The “Born Like Me” video features Jake Clemons' original song with 25¢ String Quartet performing an additional musical intro composed by Chace Moss, as well as a musical outro composed by Courtney Jay Connor, and visual performances by members of the school’s theatre, film, dance visual arts and music departments.

You can watch the new music-video below:

In his official press-release, Jake states, "'Born Like Me’ as both a song and a music-video is one of my most deep-reaching artistic efforts to date. The song was written at a time when the turmoils of the unjust executions of our American brothers and sisters were being captured on camera and highlighted amongst a wide media backdrop. A time when the realities of such painful discrepancies in our justice system were being brought into focus as voices crying for a stronger sense of humanity were ringing in the streets.

"The stories of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor’s last moments among the living drew me in to recount the harshness of their earthly departures. This was happening to the folks ‘born like me.’

"I firmly believe that each of us are connected. All of humanity is ultimately made up of one single beautiful family, and it requires us to love and protect every part of it to make us whole.”

In addition to being written and directed by Russell, the music-video for “Born Like Me” was produced by Lachlan McClellan and Matt Friedman, and was executive-produced by Deborah Thorpe and Michelle Cihak, with Ethan Wen serving as the director of photography.

Jake also states in his official press-release, “While envisioning a vehicle to communicate the sentiment of this song visually, I chose to reach out to my high-school alma mater, the Governor’s School for the Arts (GSA) in Norfolk, VA. I felt strongly about the importance of a powerful youthful representation coupled with a sincere level of artistic excellence to help tell the story, and there is no better resource for this than GSA. We teamed up with a fellow alumnus, award winning director Daniel Russell, and featured the incredible talents of each artistic department of GSA: Film, Theatre, Dance, Visual Arts and the Music.

"I am extremely proud of the profound efforts put forth by these amazing high-school students, as well as the incredible leadership of the amazing staff. The goal was to connect every viewer to these stories, for them to feel a deeper sense of humanity as a part of a family, to fuel a conviction as they look at their neighbors and broader communities. I wanted for each viewer to feel compelled to declare for themselves that these terrible atrocities are not happening to ‘those people’ but, in order to make the statement true in their own voice, that all of this is happening to those ‘Born Like Me.’”


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