Music

Noname ‘Is Not Going To Apologize’ For Keeping Jay Electronica’s Verse On ‘Sundial’ Despite An Earlier Backlash

todayAugust 14, 2023

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Ahead of the release of her third studio album, Sundial, Noname once again stirred up some controversy when fans protested the presence of New Orleans rapper Jay Electronica as a featured artist on the song “Balloons” due to accusations of antisemitism. In response, Noname threatened to withhold the album, but instead decided to merely delay the single’s release, dropping it with the rest of the album on Friday. That didn’t stop the more motivated detractors from continuing to decry Electronica’s verse, but Noname responded on Instagram, saying she is “not going to apologize for a verse I didn’t write.”

Noname denied being antisemitic, instead declaring herself “against white supremacy,” and allowed that “if you feel I’m wrong for including, that’s fair.” However, she stood adamant that “your disappointment truly means absolutely nothing to me and I say that with love.”

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Jay Electronica has drawn criticism for supposedly antisemitic beliefs due to his membership in the Nation Of Islam. He has also sampled sermons of the controversial leader Louis Farrakhan in his music and lyrically references a trope from the biblical book of Revelation, “the synagogue of Satan,” which had been used in the past to justify hatred of Jews.

Electronica’s “Balloons” verse touches on his association with Farrakhan lines like, “I’m on fire, I’m plugged in directly to Messiah / I run with the mighty ‘Khan as we expose the liars.” And while it seems that some fans would like Noname to distance herself from the elder rapper — who had an affair with Kate Emma Rothschild, who is Jewish, in the early 2010s — it doesn’t look like she’ll be caving to their demands anytime soon.

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