Feeling overdue for a new adventure in your life? The first step is believing it’s possible — and trust us, it is.

- The Root -

Advertisement

Pharrell and Jay-Z Release Music Video for New Song 'Entrepreneur,' Featuring Some Familiar Faces and Shade to Black Twitter

Illustration for article titled Pharrell and Jay-Z Release Music Video for New Song Entrepreneur, Featuring Some Familiar Faces and Shade to Black Twitter
Screenshot: Pharrell Williams (Youtube

Pharrell has followed up his curated issue of TIME magazine with Black leaders of “The New American Revolution” from earlier this week by dropping a new song and accompanying music video on Friday.

Advertisement

The track “Entrepreneur” features Jay-Z, whose own Black entrepreneur cred is well-established and is frequently boasted about by the rapper himself.

I have to say I like the music video much more than I like the song itself, as I am pretty weary of rich Black men chiding the rest of us as if it’s our fault we’re not as rich as them.

Advertisement

Jay-Z himself has been on this tip for a while and he does so right off the bat in this new song, rapping: “Black Twitter, what’s that? When Jack is paid, do you?”

Jack of course, is Jack Dorsey, the CEO of Twitter, while in the preceding line Jay-Z is referring to the infamous influence and voice that Black users have been able to carve out of the platform, including numerous Black creators and entrepreneurs who have successfully used Twitter to launch their careers.

Black Twitter for the most part laughed off the chiding and did some ribbing of Jigga themselves, including comparing him to Stringer Bell from The Wire:

Advertisement

And calling out his own habits of hobnobbing with white CEOs like Dorsey:

Advertisement

Back to the music video for “Entrepreneur”, though, in which there was much to admire. Despite Pharrell singing a refrain of “Black man, Black Man, Black Man,” the video for the song features both Black women and Black men who are doing boss things.

There’s teacher TyAnthony Davis, who founded Vox Collegiate in LA to address low-performance for students in his district.

Advertisement

There’s Tyler the Creator of Odd Future and Grammy Award-Winning fame, looking appropriately proud as a stream of his accomplishments are listed in the video.

There’s Beatrice Dixon of Honey Pot, the Black woman whose all-natural feminine product company was targeted by white reviewers online who were upset at a commercial in which Dixon says she became an entrepreneur to show little Black girls they could do it too.

Advertisement

There’s Issa Rae, who went from a web-series creator to an Emmy award winner and head of her own entertainment empire.

There’s Vincent and Arlene Williams of Honey’s Kettle, a restaurant which they operate with their children, and even Nicholas Johnson, who this year became the first Black valedictorian in the history of Princeton.

Advertisement

The video also has a really powerful ending featuring Broadway performer and choreographer Robert Hartwell, which I won’t spoil.

Watch the full video for “Entrepreneur” by Pharrell feat. Jay-Z below to experience it for yourself:


Join the discussion! The Root is hosting its first-ever, virtual Root Institute, presented by Target, featuring several of the leading minds in our community talking about politics, culture, health, community building and social impact. Subscribe for updates today!

Writer, speaker, finesser, and a fly dresser. Jamaican-American currently chilling in Chicago.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter

DISCUSSION

What people like Jay-Z and Pharrell fail to recognize is that, while there is always room for greatness and the cream will rise to the top, not everyone is, can be, or needs to be great. They need to recognize “White Privilege” and how middling, below average white people get to fail up, have hire pay, and unlimited opportunities while minorities don’t have just don’t get the same shake.

Instead of flaunting his gift and showing a standard that is not meant for everyone, Jay-z needs to recognize the disparity he grew up in and why there is only one Jay-z. Just because we aren’t meant to run an empire or be a Princeton grad doesn’t mean we don’t deserve our fair shot at a comfortable life. Don’t put that unrealistic expectation back on us..

And let’s not start with nepotism, the wealth disparity, or just plain racism and how that effects supporting black entrepreneurship. Unless it’s sports or entertainment, white money won’t get behind black business.. That’s a whole other problem that this song can’t/won’t address.. It’s basically a Tony Robbins speech.. All hype with zero actionable information.