Chuck D performed a new version of “Fight the Power,” with verses from Nas, Black Thought, and more at the BET Awards.
The BET Awards came out the gates swinging with a performance from Public Enemy’s Chuck D for “Fight the Power” that featured new verses from Nas, YG, the Roots’ Black Thought, and Rapsody.
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“Yo Chuck, I’m fighting the power right now/Thanks to you, Flav and PE putting it down,” Nas raps during his verse.
The performance featured footage shown of the Martin Luther King Jr. memorial in Washington DC, various protests across the country, and more.
“It’s the perfect storm,” BET Executive Vice President Connie Orlando, told Variety earlier this week. “The BET Awards has always been a platform for creativity, culture, and excellence. It has always spoken to what is going on in the world and our communities… That’s what makes this award show so special.”
Host Amanda Seales also spoke about airing the show during the current political climate: “I need to be thoughtful and I always am, but really making sure that I’m not taking anything for granted in terms of what this stage means at this time. When I say ‘at this time’ I don’t just mean about the uprising [against racial discrimination],” Seales told People. “But about the fact that BET is celebrating 40 years. It’s the 20-year anniversary of the BET Awards itself. So all of these things converging really is not something I take lightly and I’m looking forward to stepping into those shoes with grace.”