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Earlier this month, rapper Murs released a music video for his latest track, “Animal Style.” In the clip, Murs plays a gay character from the song experiencing coming out issues with boyfriend. The straight rapper ends the video sharing a kiss with his male partner.
“New Video!!! View it with an open mind and share it if you feel so inclined. There is no excuse for the hate,” Murs wrote on his Twitter account with a link to the video he knew would raise many reactions.
In “Animal Style,” Murs plays closeted guy Roderick who is in love with his boyfriend, John. The two share affection in secret when they are not surrounded by their high school peers. One day, John gets really excited from good news and kisses Roderick in front of his friends. Roderick, still on the down low about his sexuality, pushes John away, but his friends have already seen and spread the word. John and Roderick separate for awhile, but then reunite where Roderick kills John then turns the gun on himself. The music video is a visual representation of Murs' hip-hop track where John and Roderick kiss at the end.
"I just felt it was crucial for some of us in the hip hop community to speak up on the issues of teen suicide, bullying, and the overall anti-homosexual sentiment that exist within hip hop culture. I felt so strongly about these issues and this song that I had to do a video that would command some attention, even if it makes some viewers uncomfortable. Even if it came at the cost of my own comfort,” Murs wrote about the video, according to The Advocate.
Murs' gay awareness clip in hip-hop comes after the time fellow rapper Frank Ocean came out to say he's been in love with a man. The Advocate further reports that rappers Jay-Z and Will Smith both voiced their support for marriage equality after President Barack Obama let America know his pro stance on the topic. In the "Animal Style" video, Murs wears a "legalize gay" t-shirt.
“Animal Style” was lifted from Murs' 2011 album Love & Rockets, Volume 1: The Transformation.
See the “Animal Style” music video here (contains explicit lyrics)
Photo still courtesy of DD172& BLUROC record labels