The Atlanta rapper Gunna is a bit of an unlikely activist. Lyrically, Gunna rarely gets political. A week and a half ago, Gunna released Wunna, an album of surprisingly pretty melodic excursions. It’s really good, but it’s not the type of music that might incite anyone to work to change an unjust system. This past weekend, however, Gunna used an album-release livestream as a chance to raise money for family of George Floyd, the man who was murdered by Minneapolis police last week.
Over the weekend, Gunna played a concert on the terrace of a Los Angeles mansion. It was livestreamed on YouTube, and Gunna announced that proceeds from the stream would go to the George Floyd Memorial Fund. He also included links to a number of activist organizations, including Black Lives Matter. On Instagram, Gunna wrote that he’d been planning the livestream for weeks and, rather than cancel, he wanted to address the issue’s he’s been seeing: “this live performance is for all the black lives lost to the hands of police murders. We will be sending all the funds raised here to the organizations that support the cause.”
In the video, Gunna performs with a live band — guitarist, drummer, two keyboardists. They do a pretty good job evoking the floaty, headphone-friendly atmosphere of the record. Gunna paused repeatedly to dedicate the performance to George Floyd, and he ended it by dancing to N.W.A’s “Fuck Tha Police.” You can watch the full set below; it starts at the 20:28 mark.
Wunna is out now on Young Stoner Life Records/300 Entertainment. Right now, it’s the #1 album in America, and it’s the first Gunna album to reach that mark.