Last month, Usher liberated a powerful new ballad titled “I Cry,” a song that shows him opening up emotionally in lieu of recent tragedies among Black lives. Now, the Nasri Atweh, Jeff “Gitty” Gitelman, and Ben “Bengineer” Chang-produced single gets a mostly black-and-white visual to match, which sees a teary-eyed Usher singing while images of Black lives fighting for equality flood the screen:
“This video is in honor of the courage and bravery of the activists and organizations who are demanding a change to broken systems rooted in hundreds of years of racism. It includes iconic photography from the great humanitarian and Black artist, Gordon Parks.”
Recently, Usher performed “I Cry” during Global Citizen’s “Global Goal: Unite for Our Future” concert, an event created to help address the Coronavirus pandemic. Speaking with Billboard, Usher revealed the feelings that helped to spawn the creation of the song:
“I think it started before we were here. I think as you grow older, you become more empathetic and understanding of the world’s problems. Maybe it is the fact that you do have the ability to be able to give some perspective, right? When you have managed to have been successful or have some idea of success. I don’t know if it was more of a philanthropic thing that started it because I mentor the youth through New Look Foundation, but all of those things sparked some idea of empathy that led to becoming more conscious of what’s going on in the world around me.”
Check out both the new visual for “I Cry,” as well as the aforementioned performance, below. As with his previously released drops “California” featuring Tyga, “Don’t Waste My Time” featuring Ella Mai, and the Lil Jon and Ludacris-assisted reunion cut “SexBeat,” “I Cry” is expected to appear on Usher’s forthcoming sequel to his 2004 classic Confessions.