This Is America (Childish Gambino song)

"This Is America"
This Is America (single cover) 2018.jpg
Single by Childish Gambino
ReleasedMay 5, 2018 (2018-05-05)
FormatDigital download
GenreTrap[1], afrobeat[2]
Length3:45
Label
Songwriter(s)Donald Glover
Composer(s)
Producer(s)
  • Glover
  • Göransson
Childish Gambino singles chronology
"Terrified"
(2017)
"This Is America"
(2018)
Music video
"This Is America" on YouTube

"This Is America" is a song by American rapper Childish Gambino (Donald Glover). Written and produced by Glover and Ludwig Göransson, it was released on May 5, 2018, at the same time that Glover was hosting that day's episode of Saturday Night Live. The song features background vocals by American rappers Young Thug, Slim Jxmmi, BlocBoy JB, 21 Savage, and Quavo.[3][4]

The song's music video was directed by Japanese filmmaker Hiro Murai, a frequent Glover collaborator.[5][6] According to RCA Records, the song is not the first single from Childish Gambino's upcoming studio album.[7][8] "This Is America" debuted at number one on the US Billboard Hot 100, becoming both Childish Gambino's first number one and top ten single in the country.

Composition

The song features a gospel-style choir and background contributions from various American rappers. Young Thug, Slim Jxmmi, BlocBoy JB, 21 Savage and Quavo each deliver an ad-lib.[6][9] Young Thug returns to supply the song's outro.[4] The lyrics primarily address being black in the United States and gun violence in the country.[10] It also touches on police brutality.[11][12] Pitchfork's Stephen Kearse described the song as a representation of the "tightrope of being black", with the song "built on the sharp contrast between jolly, syncretic melodies and menacing trap cadences".[13]

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