James Billett Teams Up With Black Minds Matter For ‘What Will They Say About Us’


Fifth Element PR

Born out of frustration but projected with the calmness and earnest delivery which characterised his previous release, James Billett partners with Black Minds Matter UK to release ‘What Will They Say About Us’. Another socially-conscious anthem about the state of the planet, ‘What Will They Say About Us’ was written long before the death of George Floyd. In becoming relevant once again, the song itself is also proven to be correct - we are stuck in a pattern of mistakes that we cannot help but repeat.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with James Billett for the release of ‘What Will They Say About Us’ - the video is truly powerful and is sure to draw a lot of attention to this essential cause. We really appreciate the support of this fantastic artist.” - Agnes Mwakatuma, Founder of Black Minds Matter UK

Black Minds Matter UK was formed just days following the death of George Floyd, and in response to the deterioration of Black mental health. They aim to provide free mental health services across the UK for Black families and to make mental health topics relevant and accessible for all Black people in the UK. With the release of ‘What Will They Say About Us’ on July 17th James Billett once again positions himself as a philosophical observer in defence of the maligned, watching the world repeat mistakes again and again with a quiet incredulity and condemnation of human behaviour.

“I wrote ‘What Will They Say About Us’ because I couldn’t help but write it,” says Billett. “The song is a call to break the cycle of repeated mistakes… The world today seems unrecognisable at times, and this felt like a release of the pent up frustration from watching the world fall into patterns we’ve seen too many times before.”

Telling the stories of others requires a degree of insight and empathy, which Billett certainly has in abundance. Lyrics such as “all I see is ignorance breeding superior believing/as the story repeats history weeps as we do it all over again,” reveal a frustration which is held under the surface of Billett’s tranquil composure, illustrating how these long-held beliefs can be fought with reason as well as rage.

Once again, the music video sees Billett take the back seat, performing his song as more of a soundtrack to the stories of which he sings, than the main focal point. The video sees the impact of police brutality and assault on marginalised groups, as Billett laments in the background at the sorry state of the world in which we now find ourselves. In this way, he is able to cast himself in the role of fireside bard, telling the stories and legends of others from an observational point of view.

In the past, Billett had already begun establishing a music career for himself. He was signed to a major record label and gathered momentum and interest, before deciding that it wasn’t right. Walking away from a path to stardom so perfectly laid out for him would not have been an easy decision to make. “I started to hate the idea of becoming famous if all it meant was wearing the right things and singing songs you didn’t like,” says Billett. Having felt stifled creatively and trapped during his time on the label, James Billett was then free to write his own songs, not only about love and heartbreak, but about more political topics such as the #MeToo movement, police brutality and gay rights.

With the release of ‘What Will They Say About Us’ James Billett continues to pitch himself as a voice for the voiceless. ‘What Will They Say About Us’ is released 17th July 2020, in partnership with Black Minds Matter.

August 11, 2020 4:57am ET by Fifth Element PR  

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