As nationwide protests surge in response to the police killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, so do anti-police brutality anthems, like N.W.A.’s “F*ck Tha Police.” The 1988 single has reportedly seen a huge spike in streaming, as people across the country rally for police and social justice reform.
According to Rolling Stone, “Fuck Tha Police” saw a 272 percent percent increase in streams from May 27 through June 1, which is when many of the protests began. Likewise, Chart Data reports that Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp A Butterfly cut “Alright” has seen more streams than ever and that Childish Gambino’s “This Is America” accumulated over one million streams on Tuesday (June 2).
Additionally, Beyoncé and Kendrick’s “Freedom” collaboration has seen an increase in listens, along with viewership for Michael Jackson’s video “They Don’t Care About Us.” Fans are also playing James Brown’s 1968 song “Say It Loud — I’m Black and I’m Proud” and Nina Simone’s “I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to Be Free” more than ever.
Speaking with Lil Wayne on Young Money Radio, “F*ck Tha Police” producer Dr. Dre responded to seeing the “extremely painful” death of Floyd.
“It felt like that cop had his knee on all of our necks, meaning black men,” he said. “It’s extremely painful because it keeps going on. It continues to go on and it’s like, ‘What can we do to make this thing stop?’ What the f*ck is supposed to happen?”
“The f*cked up part is, they’re so brazen with it, broad daylight with cameras on,” Dre continued. “He’s got his knee on this guy’s neck for that amount of time, and he doesn’t give a f*ck. His hands are in his pocket and he might as well been whistling. That’s f*cked up. It’s like, ‘What the f*ck are we supposed to do to make this stop? What can happen to make this stop?’ This shit is baffling.”
Revisit “F*ck Tha Police” below.