Damian Marley has released his first single Nail Pon Cross from his upcoming fourth studio album Stony Hill which is set to be released on October 28, 2016.
Sampling the blistering, bass heavy rhythm from Jamaican vocal trio Black Uhuru’s 1984 hit “Solidarity” (produced by the legendary reggae drum and bass virtuosos Sly Dunbar and Robbie Shakespeare) Marley’s succession of ingenious rapid-fire rhymes, delivered in his inimitable sing-jay style, caution against rash assessments of people irrespective of their background, color or social standing. “I wasn’t thinking about anything grandiose when I was writing the lyrics, just day to day personal relationships,” Marley told Billboard in an exclusive interview. “The song touches on the judgments we see in the media and in politics, but it is really about how we pass judgment on each other.”
“You must understand that a man is just a man/ Don’t you judge him for his ways and flaws/ Speak of love tomorrow you’ll be doing good my brother/ You’re working for the greatest cause,” Marley sings on the track that serves as a lesson on casting the first stone, a relevant message in this strife-filled presidential election season.
The video for Nail Pon Cross (Jamaican patois for “nailed on the cross”) directed by Darren Craig, was filmed in Los Angeles in mid-July and is scheduled for a debut on Tidal on Aug. 9. It evokes a preeminent example of heartless condemnation—the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. In its climactic scene Damian, dressed in a long sleeve shirt, jeans, a bandana around his forehead replacing a crown of thorns, is nailed to a cross alongside a young African-American male, a Mexican immigrant, a Muslim man and a Los Angeles cop. “At one point in time centuries ago, crucifixion was a widely used form of capital punishment,” Damian emphasized (several media houses report this barbaric act is still practiced in Saudi Arabia and Yemen). “So we are not reenacting the crucifixion of Christ but showing the crucifixion of many. Whether people like it or not, the most important thing is to raise conversations about the judgments made against people.”
Read the full story on Billboard.