Between her songs and the visuals that accompany them, even fans of Amaarae would ponder over which one they love. With each audio-visual release, the Bronx born, Ghana-based, New Jersey and Atlanta raised afrofusionist continues to deepen her own lane while challenging herself artistically.
On her latest release, FANCY, which is the lead single off her forthcoming EP “Angels You Don’t Know”, Amaarae offers her fellow women confidence to be themselves and thrive unhinged. Off the opening lines of the first verse, Amaarae stamps out who she is: a bad bitch. In her unmistakable falsetto voice, she declares the following lyrics with no hint of apology: “I like it when you call me zaddy/ Won’t you sit up in my big fat catty?/ We can roll it, I got that Cali/ I got smoke for whoever wan try me”.
In the accompanying video for FANCY, Amaarae, along with North Productions’ David Nicol-Sey knitted a video befitting the lyrics of the song. Shot partly at the Tema port, Amaare pulls up, along with her fellow “bad bitches” in a blue Aston Martin, wearing an all-black, cowrie patterned gimp suit. The visuals transition from the port to a cyber chatroom room, where, along with her lady friends, engages with their online clients. (A nod to Onlyfans?).
The colour heavy, aesthetically pleasing video shines light on some of Amaarae’s own musical or artistic heroes like the iconic Missy Elliott, whose videos were often groundbreaking. One finds the striking influence from the opening scene of FANCY, courtesy her costume. Some of the scenes pay homage to Missy Elliott’s 2009 classic “She’s A Bitch” directed by the legendary Hype Williams.
The closing frame of the video where Amaarae hangs her head out of the window of the moving car bares similarities with a scene from Beyonce’s “Formation” video. The pinhole, closet scene where she and her babes were jamming away offers nod to the Icelandic band Dream Wife’s “So When You Gonna” video.
The importance of visuals in driving home a narrative about a song or the artist’s brand is not lost on Amaarae. Her October 2019 video “LIKE IT” which celebrated the sexually marginalized in society and “LEAVE ME ALONE”, released a month ago positions Amaarae as an artist who aims at spotlighting people within her gender class.
Amaarae’s efforts at curating her art- music and visual looks – is akin to the passion of a chemist in search of a curable solution. No minor detail is left to chance. And, that Tyler, The Creator “IGOR” poster might be Mutombo Da Poet’s idea.