Tiffany Wilson, “Me & You”

Tiffany Wilson, "Me & You"

Love is a battlefield—and so is America’s cultural landscape. Some artists recognize parallels between the way individuals struggle to communicate their fears, needs and desires within an intense, one-on-one equation, and the way groups struggle to do the same within a broader social context. Soul music has long had a keen eye for this micro-to-macro metaphor, artists singing about romantic love in one song and neighborly love in the next. Or conversely, romantic strife and systemic oppression.

In her 2016 album See Sharp, Tiffany Wilson picks up that template and applies it to contemporary concerns like police violence, female empowerment and racial equity. With a voice bolstered by formative years in Memphis’ gospel scene, she sings of romantic as well as humanist love, and the connection she draws elevating and humanizing both types. That humanity rings loud and clear on “Me & You,” a standout track and anthem of solidarity that pretty much spells out Wilson’s mission of unification through music.

The song says a lot, and now it’s bolstered by a powerful video, which we’re premiering today. Directed and produced by Darian Nieves, it flashes between harrowing images of protests and racial violence and Wilson—resplendent in multi-colored braids, Cazal specs and a giant hat—marching through Seattle and accumulating a troupe of like-minded freedom fighters. She calls out the crucial question in the chorus: “When we gonna choose a better way?/And pour a little love in every move we make?/What we gonna do?/Change gon’ take me and you.”

Goosebumps.