Today, much buzzed-about South London singer/songwriter RAY BLK has shared the visual for her latest track ‘Chill Out‘ featuring SG Lewis. The clip premiered yesterday exclusively on Vogue.com and the track is the latest taken from the quickly rising artist’s mini-album Durt, which was released on October 28th. The new video and mini-album come fresh off the heels of previously released singles ‘My Hood‘ featuring Stormzy and ‘50/50‘.
The stunning visual was shot on location in the parish of Portland, Jamaica earlier this summer and was directed by Phillipa Price, known for her work with the likes of Rihanna, Pharell, BANKS and Brooke Candy. The clip features RAY BLK performing the track with Jamaica’s Gully Queens, a community of LGBT individuals living their unapologetic truths in the midst of dangerous living conditions in the country’s capital, Kingston. Unwilling to hide or compromise their sexuality, and disenfranchised/homeless for various reasons, the gully (a sewer drain) provides the group with a sense of community and acts as a welcome sanctuary while providing them some safety.
The clip sheds a light on the country’s institutionalized homophobia, and carries the song’s core message, which Ray says is about those who are told how to live and act based on societal pressures. Ray and the group perform the song in gritty environments, while styled exclusively in high-fashion Stella McCartney, in part showcasing the attitude of the group who try to live their best lives with a sense of optimism while knowing their safety can flip on a dime.
“Shooting this video was the most eye opening experience. I saw how different life is outside of the western world where there are people losing their lives because of who they are,” says RAY BLK on the clip. “I believe if you see injustice and do nothing, you’re part of the problem. So, after hearing about the Gully Queens, I thought it was something that needed to be brought more to light. In the process I got to meet these incredibly strong women who were so happy in the face of adversity. I feel like this video solidifies what the song is about, which is female empowerment“.