While you were either partying, working or sleeping on Saturday night, D’Angelo was making waves with his first ever live performance on SNL, and the legendary soul singer was sure not to use this golden moment as a wasted opportunity.
The singer, who recently made headlines for coming out with Black Messiah (one of the best albums of 2014) after a 14 year hiatus, joined together with his band The Vanguard and kicked off their set with slow jam “Really Love”. And while the first performance was chillingly good, the stage for the second performance sent a very clear message to the public.
Standing over a chalk outline and looming in front of background singers adorned with shirts that bore the powerful phrases “Black Lives Matter” and “I Can’t Breathe”, D’Angelo belted out his second song “Charade” as an obvious ode to the many innocent lives taken from our community at the hands of the law – most recently, Eric Garner, Michael Brown and Tamir Rice. D’Angelo also wore a black hoodie as a tribute to the late Trayvon Martin.
D’Angelo is among a small handful of artists who have been using their opportunities to perform on late night shows to display their anger and heartbreak over our countries racial unrest. Just a few months ago both J.Cole and Kendrick Lamar performed similar acts displaying their solidarity and support for the #BlackLivesMatter movement.
We can only hope that more artists can unite and do the same. There is strength in solidarity.
Take a look at D’Angelo’s SNL performances below: