There is a beauty in Black love and intimacy, which Ari Lennox and J Cole pays tribute to with through her visual for ‘Shea Butter Baby’. The track, originally featured in Mike WiLL Made-It’s ‘Creed II: The Album’ movie soundtrack, evokes a strong sense of black intimacy. Ari’s vocal performance and metaphoric lyricism on the track paints a pure and empowering love that is comforting, passionate and gentle. Displayed in the visual are Ari, and her lover, sharing these intimate moments throughout flashes of their times together. Their kisses show support while each other is on a personal task, while her words describe more intimate kisses and embrace as they make love, and their gentle touch brings about a sense of comfort and security. J Cole joins in on the track to poetically add to the descriptions of black love and the feel and experience of its intimacy. He describes his desire for that love, the way he can’t escape and longs for it, while there are flashes of Ari and her partner, enjoying each other dancing, and others with Black women surrounding and intimately touching a man in a chair.
The visual is a beautiful depiction of the all too adulterated idea of Black love. Ari’s performance along with J Cole’s describes a longed for feeling of empowering, pure, gentle, protective, and intimate love. The visual comes ahead of her forthcoming album, ‘Shea Butter Baby’. Check the visual for Ari Lennox and J Cole’s ‘Shea Butter Baby’ below.