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Sampa the Great Shares Video For 2019 Track, ‘Time’s Up’

“Time’s Up” sees Sampa the Great and Krown rallying against a music industry which seeks to appropriate black art without supporting black artists.

Abdul Yusuf*

Sampa the Great has continued her hard-working streak in 2020, sharing the clip for her tune, “Time’s Up”.

First featured on her 2019 album, The Return, the track sees Sampa teaming up with Melbourne rapper Krown to deliver a scathing attack on the music industry which seeks to appropriate black art without supporting black artists.

“‘Time’s Up’ is a track that was made to reflect a conversation between 2 young black artists about the Australian music industry,” Sampa explained of the song. “With the current atmosphere it’s an important time to address systemic racism within the music industry, especially as it slowly rebuilds.

“Allyship should never be performative and as we continue past blackout day, all music orgs/labels should be put to task in bringing forward their initiatives for real change within their industry.”

Working with long-time collaborator & director Sanjay De Silva, the track’s accompanying video takes the message of the song, and puts it into context alongside references to a handful of iconic Nineties-era music videos.

“We’re playing with the tongue in cheek aspect to the song and dialling it way up by incorporating metaphors like the padded room to represent the way the industry sees black artists, to the imagery of the industry literally shaking Sampa’s culture out of her for their profit,” De Silva explained.

“We referenced some very specific ’90ss music videos throughout, from Tupac’s ‘Hit Em Up’, to videos from Busta, Da Bush Babees, Jamiroquai, and De La Soul. Each one is utilized to convey a powerful message about how the music industry has treated and continues to treat and exploit black artists.”

The release of the video to “Time’s Up” comes following a rather exciting period for Sampa the Great. While her 2019 album became her second release to win the Australian Music Prize (a first time feat for any artist), Sampa also performed for the Roots Picnic, the Black Girl Magik movement, and shared her short film, The Return, via YouTube. Most recently, US artist Denzel Curry hinted at another potential collaboration with Sampa.